Fayette Local Schools has 15 fewer students in classrooms this year compared to a year ago after holding fairly steady the two previous years.
Last year’s elementary school count stood at 220 students and slipped to 197 this year. The secondary grades increased from 223 to 233. Pre-school enrollment changed slightly, from 19 to 17, placing the total at 447.
A huge disparity exists between the largest and smallest classes in the district. The freshman class numbers 53—a dozen students larger than any other class—while the third grade class lost four students from the previous year and stands at only 19. The current kindergarten class has 31 students.
The biggest drop in enrollment was recorded in this year’s first grade class that fell five students from last year as kindergartners. The third, fifth and seventh grade classes each lost four students.
On the other hand, the sophomore class grew by 10 students, from 31 to 41.
The open enrollment option is affecting the district about the same as last year, with 29 students choosing other districts and 20 students from other districts enrolling at Fayette.
Twenty-four members of the junior and senior class attend school at the Four County Career Center and Fayette receives no state funds for those pupils.
The district’s Virtual Academy which offers on-line courses is in operation for students already enrolled in Fayette and courses will be offered starting in January to students now involved in home-schooling and in other on-line coursework.
“We currently have 43 students taking courses right now,” said staff member Lacy Stambaugh, “and all of these students but one attend Fayette school.”
The students that attend Fayette are taking an elective or classes for credit recovery.