Preliminary Numbers Show More Explosive Growth in F.C. School Enrollment

The F.C. School Board convenes Tuesday night. (Photo: Falls Church News-Press)
The F.C. School Board convenes Tuesday night. (Photo: Falls Church News-Press)

First day of school enrollment numbers in the Falls Church City Schools released at the school board meeting tonight show an explosive 6.34% enrollment growth, exceeding projections and eclipsing the record 4.5% growth of the last two school years.

The biggest jump in enrollment was in the kindergarten and first grades at the Mt. Daniel Elementary, where the leap over enrollment the last day of the previous school year in June was from 169 to 199 in kindergarten and from 173 to 184 in the first grade. Both those increases blew past the projections of the Weldon Cooper consultants from the University of Virginia who predicted a net growth in those two grades of only five students.

George Mason High enrollment in grades 9 through 12 grew from 702 to 752. Henderson Middle School grades 6 through 8 fell by two from 543 to 541, and Thomas Jefferson grades 3 through 6 grew from 647 to 703.

Final official enrollment numbers for submission to the state will be submitted Sept. 30, and will be expected to rise further. Dr. Toni Jones, Superintendent of Schools, said enrollment is expected to leap further this fall when the new large scale mixed use project, Northgate, is expected to open.

She said that local realtors are reporting to her that single family homes in the mid-range price have been selling to families with young children like hot cakes, and in many cases families are now bring forced to rent because of a lack of availability.

“The School Board has done a very good job being pro-active in planning for contingencies so we’ll be able to handle this,” Jones said.