Home School Reform News REPORT: More Than Half Million Students Have Left Public School System Amid...

REPORT: More Than Half Million Students Have Left Public School System Amid Virtual Learning

By Marlo Safi

Public schools across the country may face a crisis as enrollment levels plummeted following closures of in-person learning, the Associated Press reported.

The AP and Chalkbeat’s analysis of 33 states’ data on K-12 public school enrollment showed that more than 500,000 students have left the system. The 2% decline is significant, because trends have previously shown that overall enrollment was increasing until schools began to close in 2020, shifting education entirely online for thousands of students.

NEW: A @Chalkbeat + @AP analysis of fall enrollment data from 33 states shows that K-12 public school enrollment has fallen by ~2% or 500K+ students. Of that ~30% is attributable to a drop in kindergarten. w/ @lamarr_lemee @LeahMWillingham + @larry_fenn https://t.co/4HyudiJn5k

— Kalyn Belsha (@kalynbelsha) December 22, 2020

The enrollment decreases could begin to affect funding, since it’s tied to head counts.

The analysis reportedly doesn’t yet include 17 states that have released their data on enrollment numbers, meaning analysts expect the number of students that have left the public school system to grow.

Kindergarten enrollment accounted for 30% of the decline, as many families may have chosen to either skip it because it’s not required or pursue a different education setting for young children.

It was unclear from the analysis how many families opted for private schools, which may have opened while local school districts remained closed, or homeschooling. In Massachusetts, public school enrollment dipped by 3%, and half of the students that left were instead being homeschooled or enrolled in private schools, but 7,000 students were unaccounted for.

States that reportedly experienced the most significant decline in K-12 public school enrollments include Mississippi, New Hampshire, Maine, North Carolina, Michigan and Virginia.

In Wisconsin, a study showed that 34 districts that started the school year with virtual learning saw a 3% decrease in enrollment, while the state’s school enrollment declined 2.67%. Meanwhile, private school choice programs grew by more than 2,700 students as public schools saw declines of 36,000.

Virginia’s largest school system, Fairfax County Public Schools, has had 8,700 students withdrawn from the district, marking a 5% enrollment decrease. The district’s own report also found that students were increasingly failing virtual classes. (RELATED: ‘We Are Breaking’: Parents Describe How Virtual Learning Has Traumatized Their Children)

The switch to virtual schooling has raised concerns about students’ mental health and academic performance, especially in districts where students have yet to return to classrooms after the initial wave of shutdowns in the spring. The White House has warned of the “unintended consequences” of not reopening schools, such as causing long-term damage to childhood development and disproportionately impacting minority and low-income students.

President-elect Joe Biden pledged to reopen most schools within the first 100 days of his presidency, as long as Congress provides enough funding for students and teachers to return.

 

Originally published by the Daily Caller. Republished with permission.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

What the School Board Members Who Shape Your Child’s Curriculum Really Believe

Over 14,000 school boards, with about 100,000 members, set the course for instruction in classrooms across the country. To understand the views of parents...

Nearly 1,900 Oklahoma Students Benefit from School Choice Tuition Program

By Dan McCaleb Oklahoma's Stay in School Fund tuition assistance program helped 1,893 children attend private school in the state this school year, according to...

Bay Area Doctors Sign A Letter Calling for School Reopening

By Steven Hall Thirty doctors at the University of California at San Francisco have published an open letter calling for the reopening of both elementary...

Biden’s Disbanding of 1776 Commission Shows Left’s War on U.S. History

By Mike Gonzalez All Americans should wish President Joe Biden well. To do otherwise would be churlish and self-defeating. It beggars belief, though, that one...

Recent Comments

Randy M Verret on The Gaslight Election
S. T. Karnick on The Gaslight Election
Randy M Verret on The Gaslight Election
S. T. Karnick on The Gaslight Election
Randy M Verret on The Gaslight Election
S. T. Karnick on The Gaslight Election
Randy Verret on The Gaslight Election
Randy Verret on The Gaslight Election