Inside Education: RPS Enrollment Projections update

At the Nov. 12 BOE meeting, a demographer from Milone & MacBroom presented the RPS Enrollment Projections Update for 2019-20. The report looks at economic and employment trends, birth trends, the housing market including sales and permits as well as RPS enrollment history and trends.

Key takeaways from this year’s report:

 Elementary school enrollment has bottomed out and is projected to grow slightly beginning in the 2021-22 school year. The actual “bottom” is about 300 (20%) more elementary students than the low predicted by a different demographer in 2012.

 Lower enrollment continues at the middle school level through 2026-27. The three-year plan to address the decline with an annual reduction of a grade level team at ERMS has been fully implemented.

 As lower class sizes matriculate up, high school enrollment will decline significantly over the next 10 years.

Other interesting observations coming out of the 2019 data:

 Young families are moving to town after they have started a family (more than half of all kindergartners were linked to a home sale in Ridgefield).

 The number of Ridgefield single-family and condo housing sales are consistent with sales since 2013.

 For each home sale, there are about 0.38 students per sale, similar to 2018; 61% are elementary students.

 An increasing proportion of kindergartners are not matched to births or home sales, potentially due to the rental market.

The full report can be found on the RPS website under BOE meeting documents for Nov. 12, 2019.