The official count of students at Arlington Public Schools for 2016-17 shows an increase of 3.6 percent from a year before, but the number is lower than had been projected by school officials in the spring.
A total of 26,152 students were accounted for as of Sept. 30, the date local school districts conduct a formal tally for the Virginia Department of Education.
That’s up 914 students – the equivalent of a middle school – from the number in class at the same point last year, and is up 23 percent from the 21,241 students in class in the fall of 2010.
While on the rise, the student count was 262 below what Arlington school officials had projected. And it falls in the middle of the growth curve over the last five years, higher than the 2.9-percent year-over-rear rate of 2015 but lower than the 5.2-percent rate of 2014.
In part to address the growing enrollment, which is percolating up from elementary schools to the secondary level, county school officials continue to work on a boundary-adjustment process involving Arlington’s three primary high schools.
The effort kicks into high gear this month, with School Board action slated for December. Current students at Wakefield, Washington-Lee and Yorktown high schools will be grandfathered in, but incoming students could be affected.
It won’t be the last boundary-change effort at the high-school level, as school officials are expected to revisit things again in 2020 for the 2022-23 school year.
“That process could potentially impact a lot more students,” said Lisa Stengel, the school system’s director of planning and evaluation.