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News Release - Statewide preschool through 12th-grade student enrollment continues to grow

Jan. 15, 2015

Statewide preschool through 12th-grade student enrollment continues to grow

The Colorado Department of Education announced today that the statewide preschool through 12th-grade pupil count for the 2014-2015 school year increased by 12,007 over the previous year, bringing the total to 889,006 public school students. This number represents the total number of students served. 

This change represents an increase of 1.4 percent, lower than the 1.6 percent growth rate in the 2013-2014 school year and lower than the median and mean (average) growth rate of 1.7 in the past 20 years. 

The largest 15 districts and their current student enrollments are:  Denver Public Schools (88,839), Jeffco Public Schools (86,547), Douglas County School District (66,702), Cherry Creek Schools (54,499), Aurora Public Schools (41,729), Adams 12 Five Star Schools (38,701), St. Vrain Valley School District (31,076), Boulder Valley School District (30,908), Poudre School District (29,053), Colorado Springs School District 11 (28,332), Academy School District 20 (24,578), Mesa County Valley School District 51 (21,742), Greeley-Evans School District 6 (21,183), Falcon School District 49 (19,552) and Pueblo City Schools (17,960).

These 15 school districts, with a total enrollment of 601,401, represent 68 percent of the total statewide enrollment. This percentage is unchanged from 2013-2014.

The greatest growth in enrollment is in urban/suburban districts, which experienced a 5,564 growth in student enrollment.

On the other end of the size spectrum, 135 of Colorado’s 185 local education agencies (excluding detention centers) have an enrollment of fewer than 2,000 students. These 135 agencies currently enroll 70,067 students, 7.9 percent of the total number of students in the state. Of these, 110 enroll fewer than 1,000 students. These 110 local education agencies enroll 4.1 percent of the total number of students in the state.

Race and Ethnicity Data

The greatest percentage growth (6.8 percent) in federal race/ethnicity groups is in students classified as two or more races. The pupil count for this group increased from 30,625 in 2013 to 32,707 in 2014. The largest count change is in students identified as Hispanic and Latino; their count increased from 287,402 in 2013 to 294,435 in 2014, a 7,033 increase. Students identified as Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander increased by 3.7 percent, while all other race/ethnicity groups have less than a 1.5 percent change in counts from 2013 to 2014.

Fast-Growing Districts

Of the districts with greater than 100 students, the Charter School Institute (which had the largest decrease in students in 2013) has the largest number of student gains in 2014, gaining 3,573 students, representing a 34.1 percent increase from 2013-2014. Denver Public Schools has the second largest count change, gaining 2,796 students, a 3.3 percent increase.

Colorado Digital BOCES, increasing from 358 students in 2013 to 1,698 in 2014, has the highest percentage increase in students, 374.3 percent.  Byers School District has the second largest percentage increase, 231.1 percent, resulting from an increase in students from 647 in 2013 to 2,142 in 2014. 

The reason for increased enrollment for Colorado Digital BOCES and the Charter School Institute is that each gained one or more new schools in 2014.

District Decreases

Adams 12 Five Star Schools has the largest drop in student enrollment from 42,230 in 2013 to 38,701 in 2014, a decrease of 3,529 or 8.4 percent. A total of 83 local educational agencies have enrollment drops, totaling 6,115 students. 

The primary reason for Adams 12 Five Star Schools’ decrease and Byers’ increase is Byers assumed responsibility for the Colorado Virtual Academy (COVA), which was previously authorized by Adams 12 Five Star Schools.

Online Enrollment 

The 2014-2015 enrollment totals include 17,060 students registered in online educational programs. This is 1.9 percent of all students.  The online enrollment for 2014 is a 5.2 percent increase from the 2013-14 online enrollment count of 16,215. The 2014 enrollment reflects a 30 percent increase over the 2009 online enrollment and a 342.8 percent increase over the 2004 online enrollment.

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To access to the complete 2014-2015 school year student count information, click “2014 Pupil Membership” on http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdereval/pupilcurrent

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