The Edmond Sun

August 15, 2013

Some classroom student numbers higher than expected

Patty Miller
The Edmond Sun

Deer Creek — School started Thursday for students in the Deer Creek School District and parents began the search for kindergarten classrooms with their child in tow.

As of May 15, the Deer Creek Public Schools District had 4,691 students enrolled. Of that number, 2,062 students were enrolled in elementary schools, but those totals have been increasing each day.

At Prairie Vale Elementary School, Principal Michelle Anderson said in the past two weeks 24 kindergarten students have enrolled in addition to the four classrooms of students who already had signed up for the school year.

“At this time we have 26 or 27 students signed up for each of the kindergarten classes, but we are taking a wait and see attitude to find out how many students will actually show up for class,” Anderson said.

Anderson said this is not the first time the student numbers have increased in specific grade levels. Before Rose Union Elementary was built Prairie Vale had a capacity enrollment.

“Class size is a problem any growing school district has, and even with the redistricting we are seeing some classes a little larger than we had expected,” Anderson said. “We will work with student numbers in the next few days and see where we stand.”

In May of 2010 there were 3,593 students attending the Deer Creek Public Schools and of that number 1,799 students were classified as elementary students. In the past two years the overall number of students enrolled has increased by 1,098 students with more students still expected to enroll.

All of the schools were redistricted this year to redistribute the students in this rapidly growing district. The new elementary, Spring Creek Elementary on North Rockwell drew students from surrounding elementary schools to fill its classrooms.

“The district will continue to monitor and assess class sizes at all sites,” said Lenis DeRieux, executive director of Human Resources & Communications for the district. “The actual warm body count that we conduct on the first day is a more accurate assessment of the reality of class sizes.”

DeRieux said district officials typically find, as do most schools, that how many students show up can vary from what was anticipated.

“We feel confident that the learning that each student receives will be excellent,” DeRieux said.