School Enrollment Up at Beginning of New Year

By Adam Swift

School enrollment continues to rise in the wake of the end of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Looking at data from the beginning of the school year, Superintendent of Schools Lisa Howard said enrollment is up by 106 students from the beginning of the school year two years ago.

But Howard said there isn’t a concern about a lack of school space yet, thanks in large part to the district’s focus on making sure students meet residency requirements.

“The total enrollment as of today is 1,989 students,” said Howard. “If we roll back to 2021-22, we had 1,883 students, and in 22-23, we had 1,941 students.”

Howard did remind the committee that the district is still going through residency of students, so numbers are subject to change from the initial numbers at the start of the year. She said some students may withdraw on their own, while others who have left the district will be reminded they have to withdraw from the Winthrop schools and then enroll in their new community.

Still, the numbers currently show Winthrop enrollment up 106 students from the beginning of the 21-22 school year.

“That’s a fair amount of students, so you can see the trend is headed upward,” said Howard. “I can tell you that if we did not do our due diligence with residency, we would be well over 2,000 students.”

The superintendent said the district will be checking the residency cards that are returned to make sure the district has the correct addresses for students.

As of Monday, Howard said there had been about 100 residency cards returned to the district. She said some of them could be from students who have moved to another address in Winthrop, and some of the addresses may not have been updated from the end of the last year.

But Howard said there are likely also students who have moved outside of Winthrop and failed to notify the district.

“We are not running out of space in our buildings, but there is a real strong potential for that to happen if we didn’t stay in tune to our residency requirements,” said Howard.

In other business, Howard said the district is still looking for several teachers for the new school year, including two special education teachers, a multi-language teacher, and a general education third grade teacher at the Cummings School.

The district also needs an educational support professional at the middle school and several cafeteria workers, Howard added.

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