Student numbers shrinking

  • Feb. 3, 2014 12:00 p.m.

District superintendent Angus Wilson has told school trustees that student numbers will likely shrink again in the coming year, with the decline spread among all the islands schools. The official enrollment projection for September 2014 is 563.5 students, about 30 fewer students than are attending school right now, Mr. Wilson said at the Jan. 28 board meeting. The projected count includes 15 adult students, as well as 44 students at A.L. Mathers, 138.5 at QCSS, 43 at Port Clements, 149 at Skaa’dgaa Naay, 73 at Tahayghen and 101 at G.M. Dawson. Even more alarming, Mr. Wilson, are the enrollment projections further into the future. He told trustees that Haida Gwaii will likely have only 495 students attending public school by 2018. At one point the district had over 1,200 students, but enrollment has been steadily dropping for at least the past decade. Chair Elizabeth Condrotte said trustees plan to talk about the low student numbers when they hold a retreat this weekend, and how to continue to provide the best education program possible. Ms Condrotte said the declining enrollment is an important issue, one that all islanders should be thinking and talking about.

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