Count Day brought good news for Wyandotte Public Schools, with a tentative increase of 18 students districtwide. It still needs to be confirmed, but preliminary numbers show a student population of 3,991, up from 3,973 last year, said Superintendent Carla Harting.
Count Day was held across the state on Oct. 3, as all public schools in Michigan tallied the number of students enrolled in the district. This is an important day for schools because each student in attendance translates into state funding.
Wyandotte Public Schools budgeted for a decrease of 100 students for 2012-13, Harting said. Administrators selected it as a conservative estimate because in the past, they had a loss of more than 100 students.
“We were being conservative,” she said. “We’re very happy that we are up instead.”
In addition, Wyandotte’s school funding is up $120 per student this year, from $6,846 per student last year to $6,966 this year, Harting said.
Eighteen more students mean total funding for the school district would increase by $125,388. And with $120 more per student added in, the increase is $602,148.
Harting said enrollment increases in Wyandotte Public Schools are spread throughout the grade levels. Kindergarten numbers remain the same as last year. Like many public schools in Michigan, Wyandotte changed to full day kindergarten this school year.
Count days and school funding are mandated through the State School Aid Act. The calculation schools receive is based on winter and fall student count data during the same calendar year, according to the Michigan Department of Education. For example, this year's funding will be based on February's count and October's count.
Students must be in attendance and receive instruction in all classes on count day to be included.