SCHOOL COMMITTEE NEWS: Student Enrollment DOWN 132 From Last Year, Concern Over Exodus After 8th Grade

WILMINGTON, MA — The School Committee recently received an enrollment report from Superintendent Dr. Glenn Brand.

The district’s enrollment is down 132 students from last year, falling from 3,399 to 3,267.

  • Boutwell DECREASED by 25, from 160 to 135
  • Wildwood DECREASED by 23, from 194 to 171
  • Shawsheen INCREASED by 16, from 345 to 361
  • Woburn Street INCREASED by 36, from 383 to 419
  • North DECREASED by 38, from 303 to 265
  • West DECREASED by 10, from 247 to 237
  • Middle School DECREASED by 56, from 836 to 780
  • High School DECREASED by 27, from 862 to 835
  • Out of District Placement DECREAED by 5, from 69 to 64

The district is in the process of submitting its enrollment numbers to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). Final enrollment numbers will be available in late October or early November following the DESE’s verification process.

“This shows me that our numbers are trending down across the board, slightly,” remarks School Committee Chair Julie Broussard. “It appears our school population, as a whole, is trending downwards, but these things are cyclical.”

Brand also provided data indicating that, over the past two years, 33.4% of graduating 8th graders (204 out of 610) left the school district.

After the 2016-2017 school year, 98 8th graders left the district. 68 went to the Shawsheen Tech, 25 went to private schools, and 1 went to Minuteman Tech.

After the 2017-2018 school year, 106 8th graders left the district. 80 went to the Shawsheen Tech, 25 went to private schools, and 1 went to Essex Aggie.

“I was surprised to see these numbers, to be honest,” admitted Superintendent Dr. Glenn Brand. “I’ve heard a fair amount of worry or concern in the community about how many students are leaving at the end of 8th grade… It is accurate to say that, over the past two years, we are losing a good number of students to a variety of other placements.”

Brand intends to “dig in” to the numbers even further and examine data from prior years. He promised to report back to the board with his findings.

“I think it’s great that you’re [studying this],” said School Committee Vice Chair Jennifer Bryson. “I’m mostly curious about why folks are leaving for private. I’d love to know in an exit interview why they’re making that choice.”

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2 thoughts

  1. “Student Enrollment DOWN 132 From Last Year, Concern Over Exodus After 8th Grade”
    As I read this, I noticed that there was no mention that it costs over $10,000 per student to educate a child. At least having numbers going down is not further impacting the taxpayers(except the ones that are paying taxes and then having to pay tuition). I also noticed that there was no mention of the people who are being forced out of town due to fraudulent over budgeting and over taxation which are impacting families in a drastic and devastating way. Think of the trauma on a child having to leave their friends and teammates and move out of town—NOT GOOD!!!
    Suggestions: A.)The School Committee and superintendent should post a comprehensive list of items that make up their department’s budget so the people of Wilmington can evaluate how much money is going into free cash to support Crony Capitalism.
    B.) Find out how many families have moved out of town because of too high real estate taxes.
    C.) Find out how many teachers have left the school system having been fed up with failed policies that prevent them from disciplining punk kids to keep their doofus parents happy and nonconfrontational(at the educational peril of other students).
    D.)Find out how many students left because of the high school gym floor being screwed up because the high school building committee got the best contractor in the world even though they got kicked off every school project in New Jersey. Also find out why locker room floor below gym was built so close to the water table of the swamp beside the school and see if the moisture is causing the problems with the floor.
    E.) Find out how many teachers were hired because they are related to someone in Town Hall or the school department and not because of merit.
    F.) Get back the teacher of the year who after the 1980 school year HAD TO BE laid off due to prop 2 1/2 cuts and apparent contractual requirements or learn from the failures of the doofuses that signed the contract that enabled this to happen and change this so it can never happen again.

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