Last week at the school board meeting, South Lane Superintendent Krista Parent reported that the district currently has 23 less students than it had this time last year.
“You don’t want that to go down very much because you are funded by how many kids you have,” said Parent. “So we’re going to get 23 times, roughly, $7,500 a kid less in money from the state.”
While losing over $170,000 would be difficult, Parent is not yet concerned because of the nature of attendance.
“We’re always looking for is for this number to be fairly steady. And the thing is, this fluctuates a lot. I get these reports weekly and you’ll watch, you’ll see that we could come back in November and November is even. Kids come and go all the time, it’s crazy what you see happen. So, this doesn’t worry me,” she said. In the latest report, Cottage Grove High School had 35 less students than last year, Bohemia had five less and Harrison had 12 more students. Parent noted that the district is set up to handle the ebbs and flows of attendance. Issues only arise when it hits extremes in either direction.
A few years ago, the district had 70 students less than the previous year and one year had 40 students more than the year before. “We can handle it. It’ll fluctuate, we’ll get more kids in, things will change. So, we’re not worried about that right now,” said Parent.
“I get these [updates] weekly and this drives our entire budget.”