ACS enrollment up nearly 50

Published 12:05 am Saturday, October 20, 2012

Enrollment numbers are up in at Andalusia City Schools and down in Opp City and Covington County Schools.

Each year, systems are required to submit 40-day numbers that record average daily membership (ADM), or daily enrollment.

Those numbers, which are gathered based on the first 20 days after Labor Day, are used to determine the level of funding for a system – which includes teacher salaries – for the following fiscal year.

Andalusia City Schools saw a nearly 50-student spike in enrollment, but superintendent Ted Watson said it wasn’t at a specific school.

“It’s not really an isolated group,” he said. “The numbers are higher everywhere. We are very pleased, especially with all things staying equal and the economy.”

Watson said it’s possible that they could gain a teaching unit, but they won’t know until the legislature meets next spring.

“We are keeping our fingers crossed,” he said. “We are trying to put together with college and career-tech programs. We’re not counting our chickens before the eggs hatch.”

Andalusia High School has 487 students; Andalusia Middle School has 417 students; Andalusia Elementary School has 852 students, for a total of 1,756.

Enrollment is down some 35 students from last year, to 1323 at Opp City Schools.

Opp High School has 377 students; Opp Middle School had 406 students and Opp Elementary School has 540 students.

OCS superintendent Michael Smithart said the system could lose teaching units come next year.

“I think that is a very good possibility, especially at OHS,” he said. “This is the first year in a while where we have seen such a significant change. We have look at it, and it’s not a simple transfer issue. We had a number of families relocate to other towns and states.”

Enrollment is down slightly in the Covington County School System.

Superintendent Terry Holley said the system lost 14 students overall.

“Our enrollment was up at the beginning of the school year, but like all the systems in our county, we have a lot of transient students,” Holley said.

“I feel good about our numbers,” he said. “Of course, we’d love for them to be up, but we’re holding our own.”

Holley said 3,112 students are enrolled in the county’s nine schools, which includes 18 attending the Red Level pre-K program.

He said the biggest growth was seen at Red Level Elementary School and Straughn High School, which numbered 344 and 431, respectively.

Other numbers included:

• Fleeta: 188; Florala: 203; Pleasant Home: 566; Red Level High: 275; Red Level Elementary: 341; Straughn Elementary : 549; Straughn Middle: 253; Straughn High School: 431;• WS Harlan: 298; and Red Level preschool: 18