The Class of 2028 is larger than expected at some local schools, leading to a last-minute rush to add classes or shut down added enrollment.
Center Grove schools has its biggest kindergarten class in the school district’s history. At Edinburgh schools, the district has run out of space for kindergartners.
What that means for those schools are changes to what classes go where, larger than desired class sizes and making sure they are prepared for more growth if the trend continues.
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Across the county, kindergarten numbers are staying more steady. Clark-Pleasant, Franklin and Green-wood schools all have similar enrol-lment, or slightly less, compared to past school years.
Kindergarten students make up about 7 percent of enrollment at each school district, and total more than 1,800 students countywide this school year.
At Center Grove, a total of 576 kindergartners had enrolled as of Monday. That is about 25 more than last school year, and enough to fill a kindergarten classroom.
So that’s exactly what school officials did: added a new kindergarten classroom for a total of 24 classes throughout the five elementary schools.
Some schools added more kindergarten classrooms, due to redistricting that began this school year.
For example, Center Grove Elementary went from having five sections of kindergarten students to seven.
About 205 students were transferred from Maple Grove Elementary School to the other elementary schools during redistricting, but their kindergarten class sizes still stayed the same, with about 25 students per class.
“Currently, it’s the highest number of kindergartens we’ve had in the history of Center Grove,” Center Grove Superintendent Rich Arkanoff said. “It’s the most we’ve had.”
If the enrollment growth continues in Center Grove, the school district will have to accelerate their timeline for building a new elementary school, which had been projected to be needed by 2028, Arkanoff said.
For now, officials will watch the school district enrollment numbers to decide if additional measures, like creating more kindergarten classrooms, are necessary until another elementary school can be built, Arkanoff said.
Edinburgh can handle 75 kindergarten students in their three classrooms — but as of last week, they had 76 enrolled.
That means cramped quarters at East Side Elementary, with 76 students divided among three classrooms.
Principal Andrew Scholl said the school’s cap is 75 students for kindergarten, so now officials will stop open enrollment for the rest of the school year, unless that number drops. Any family that lives within the school district can still send their child to school, but students who want to transfer into the school district will have to wait until next year, Scholl said.
All grades at East Side Elementary School had a small increase in class sizes this school year, Scholl said. He does not think the high kindergarten class size will continue, since housing developments have been slower to build than in previous years and based on preschool enrollment, he said.
Center Grove has the largest amount of kindergarteners in their history, while other school districts are staying steady with their enrollment from years past. Here’s a look at how many kindergarten students are enrolled in local schools: