Preliminary enrollment figures given by Hays USD 489 Superintendent Ron Wilson at Monday night’s board meeting suggest the district is on track for at least similar enrollment numbers to last year.
Basing his numbers on completed enrollment forms, Wilson gave estimates totaling 2,949 students, advising those numbers will likely change before the official enrollment figures on the 20th day of classes are reported.
Total official headcount at the district’s schools in 2018-19 was 3,056, according to the Kansas Department of Education.
“This seems like something that should be fairly easy to get, how many kids we actually have in our schools right now. You’d be surprised how difficult that really is,” Wilson said.
The district uses Powerschool student management software, but it contains records for students who were enrolled the previous year but have not yet enrolled for 2019-20.
“We don’t really know if they’re not coming or they’re just late in arriving, so sometimes those numbers are a little inaccurate,” he said.
The district’s four elementary schools have a total enrollment of 1,415 according to Wilson’s preliminary figures. That’s 162 more students than reported last year to the Kansas Department of Education.
Roosevelt has the largest of the elementary schools at 419, followed by Wilson at 408, O’Loughlin at 375 and Lincoln at 213.
Hays Middle School at this point has 677 students, just two behind last year’s figures.
“Our middle school is full to the gills. We are busting at the seams,” Wilson said. “I was there on the first day, and man, I didn’t think they were all going to fit in the gym, but they did,” he said.
The sixth grade is the largest of the school’s classes with 244, the same number when those students were in fifth grade last year.
There are 228 seventh graders and 208 eighth graders.
Hays High School’s total preliminary enrollment is at 857, lower than last year’s 895 official headcount, but Wilson said it’s often at the high school level those preliminary figures can change.
The ninth grade is the largest class, with 226. Tenth grade is at 215 students and 11th grade at 218. The senior class is the smallest at 178 students.
“The numbers are very close to 3,000 right now. We’ll get some additional numbers based on our other sites,” Wilson said.
“Once we get closer to Sept. 20, we’ll be able to nail all that down,” he said.
Sept. 20 is the official day for reporting enrollment numbers.