BENTONVILLE — Enrollment in the school district could increase by 2,200, or 12%, to a total of nearly 21,000 students over the next five years, according to an analysis by RSP and Associates.
Rob Schwarz, founder and CEO of RSP, presented the results of the analysis and the 71-page report to the school board on Tuesday. It includes enrollment forecasts by level and school for the next five and ten years, with current zone boundaries, as well as tables, graphs and maps.
The school board hired the Overland Park, Kansas-based company in January to perform an enrollment analysis and an attendance limit analysis at a cost of $60,000. It was funded from the district operating fund.
As part of the data collection process, RSP met with city and county planners and developers to discuss land use, development policies, building permit trends and future plans. housing development, according to Don Hoover, executive director of student services. The company also collected information such as census data, birth rates versus kindergarten enrollment, migration within the district, subdivision life cycle, past enrollment trends, and cohort changes. of students, according to Schwarz.
The district could face capacity issues over the next five years at Centerton Gamble, Mary Mae Jones and Vaughn elementary schools; Bright Field and Creekside Middle Schools; Grimsley Junior High; and Bentonville West High School, according to the report.
The analysis revealed that housing development is expected to continue to grow, with over 20,000 potential housing units identified. The main growth corridors should be along Centerton Boulevard and south of 14th Street and Arkansas 112, he says.
School administrators will use the next few months to analyze the report and present it to the school board at its annual 10-year planning session in October, Hoover said. The board will use the information to help make decisions on the 10-year plan, such as determining building needs and analyzing school zones, he said.
“Our team of professional educators and excellent administrators have done a great job with our demographics and studies, but this will definitely add a level of detail and layers of detail that will help us make decisions,” said said the chairman of the school board. Eric White.
Enrollment in the Bentonville District as of October 1 was 18,536, representing an increase of more than 30% from 10 years ago. The district built and opened several new schools during this time. The next new building, Vaughn Elementary School, is slated to open this fall on Southwest Barron and Opal roads near the Benton County Fairgrounds.
The last demographic study for the district was conducted by Jack Schreder and Associates of Sacramento, California in 2013.
Future enrollment forecasts for the next five years:
• The district grows from over 2,200 students (12%) to nearly 21,000 students.
• Elementary school increases from about 700 students (9.9%) to about 8,000 students.
• Middle School grows from approximately 470 students (16.4%) to approximately 3,300 students.
• The lower secondary cycle increases from about 250 students (8.8%) to about 3,100 students.
• Secondary school increases by nearly 800 students (14.3%) to approximately 6,200 students.
Source: RSP and associates