September 20, 2013

Enrollment increases at Pioneer Regional Schools

Royal Center corp. gains about 10 students.

by Amie Sites Pharos-Tribune

---- — ROYAL CENTER — Between 2012 and 2013 enrollment at Pioneer Regional School Corporation increased by 10.5 students, with kindergartners counting as half a student.

There are 947 students within the corporation, but the number is similar to a moving target because enrollment numbers change often, said David Bess, superintendent at Pioneer.

“Our number of residents went down, but transfers went up,” Bess said. “I’m happy to see the total increase.”

Preliminary enrollment numbers were showing the total could possibly decrease by 10 students, so to see it actually increase is great, Bess said.

Pioneer Elementary has 493 students this year, which is close to the previous school year. Beth Dean, principal at Pioneer Elementary said the enrollment number last year varied between 490 and 506, depending on the time of year. Dean said there is a large first grade class at the elementary.

“We have been pretty steady with enrollment,” Dean said. “Overall numbers are good, especially with the student-teacher ratio.”

Pioneer Jr.-Sr. High School had 454 students as of last week. The number changes every day, Bess said.

Enrollment numbers are hard to determine at the beginning of the school year because of the frequency students arrive and leave at the beginning of each school year, Bess said.

“We hope to see the number continue to increase,” Bess said. “We hope that the students who are attending school get the best education possible.”

The focus moving forward, especially with the recent release of ISTEP+ scores, is to have interventions and help students improve and succeed, Bess said.

Local school enrollment by the numbers Total 947 Current (2013-2014) 936.5 2012-2013 Pioneer Elementary 493 current Pioneer Jr.-Sr. High 454 current