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GCPS enrollment surging past projections

SUWANEE -- The tally of students in Gwinnett County Public Schools continues to rise much to the surprise of staff, who said it looks like the district will see much more growth than in the last couple years.

On Monday, GCPS completed its third enrollment count of the year, numbering 164,035 students -- a tally that exceeds 2012-13 projections by nearly 1,400.

In looking at the numbers, Director of Planning Greg Stanfield said the trend will continue until the final enrollment count on Sept. 4.

"We really were dealing with a different set of circumstances this year in terms of the economy and uncertainties about growth," Stanfield said. "We used the same planning resources as we have in the past...resources that have traditionally put our forecast within one percentage point of the actual enrollment."

Added Stanfield: "However, given the economic uncertainties, we leaned toward a more conservative forecast. What we are seeing is that Gwinnett is continuing to grow and that we are on track to grow by more students than we have in recent years."

Officials with the district had orginally predicted growth of 265 students for the 2012-13 school year.

Historically, enrollment continues to climb during the year with the post-Labor Day count more accurately reflecting school enrollment.

The remaining enrollment counts will take place on Aug. 27 and Sept. 4.

Comments

Ashley 2 years, 4 months ago

My school has kids on the floor. Wilbanks said we would have 2 more per class but I have 9 more in each. 36 in a classroom built for 30 or less.

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

Parents need to go to that school's administration and demand answers. IMO, there are just not that many families moving into Gwinnett.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

Ashley, if you are an experienced teacher you should know that adjustments are made after Labor Day. And if you are an informed teacher you know that the leveling is done as quickly as possible. And as for news2me's advice: demanding only appeals to the less pensive. Not good advice at all. One thing that is supposed to separate animals from humans is the human brain.

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

So YOU would not question why enrollment is skyrocketing when the school system recently said numbers were "excepted" to be at an all time low? It sounds to me that YOU get paid per student. Retired but reemployed PR blogger for the system?

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

If you had read closely GCPS reports annually on prediction for enrollment, you know they are right on the money. Even with the unexpected rise in enrollement for 12-13 the % of accuracy is incredible. This economy and its effect on the transiency of GC citizens is something never before experienced. And no...I doubt seriously they employ bloggers. We bloggers are too limited.

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kevin 2 years, 4 months ago

maybe you should ask yourself how many are illegal?

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NewsReader 2 years, 4 months ago

...and the word for the day is "AFFIDAVIT"!

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

Every Gwinnett taxpayer should be suspicious of these GCPS enrollment numbers. Should be interesting to see the numbers after Labor Day.

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chasmcjr 2 years, 4 months ago

Do you think they are making it up or what? More likely is the transient population all over this country, legal and illegal. That is had to predict.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

Wilbanks is an idiot. When is GCPS going to get a new BOE and Superintendent "CEO" as JAW likes to call himself. He a shop teacher nothing more, nothing less.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

He is one of the most estute economists and educators in the US. Obviously he is far smarter than we who blog.

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

While I agree that Wilbanks is not an idiot, your comments are quite gushing and a bit over the top. Sounds like you get rewarded handsomely for defending Wilbanks and/or GCPS at every turn. Interesting!

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

Sorry if they sound gushing. Not intended. Just factual. That is why GC continues to get Triple A bond ratings. And I get no reward. Just the satisfaction of not letting this blog be all negative. I will all it out when it is warranted and when I think bloggers have no base for a statement, I'll say so.

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Don 2 years, 4 months ago

You may think he is an idiot but he has surrounded himself with very good people. Gwinnett continues to be one of the best school systems in GA so something must be right.

Ashley is your school way over the estimated enrollment? Have you spoken to the administration about the class size? Are they taking action or do all of the classes have that many. I can only assume you are in a High School?

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Sandykin 2 years, 4 months ago

Gwinnett being one of the best is Georgia really isn't saying a whole heck of a lot as Georgia continues to rank in the bottom 10% nationally.

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NewsReader 2 years, 4 months ago

When did we climb to the bottom 10%?

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

I would like to see enrollment numbers from surrounding counties, specifically Dekalb.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

@Don. You can't be referring to people like Seckinger (mugshot for failure to pay child support) or Louise Radloff (switch parties for political expediency) and Mary Kay Murphy (whatever she is on i want two - observe her in a BOE meeting - earth to MK).

GCPS is the largest in the state but not necessarily the best. There are a lot of things wrong with this system. Gwinnett has a "CEO" making more money the governor, have children sharing text books, no text books to take home to study, HS guidance counselors who aren't worth a damn, trailers for classrooms.....just to name a few things.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

SickandTired, I love Don's reply to you below!

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Ashley 2 years, 3 months ago

@ ssilover1 - When I was a student Gwinnett scores were the best in Metro Atlanta. Now GCPS brags because they beat state average. State average is a joke!

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NewsReader 2 years, 4 months ago

That's because the High School Guidance Counselors are sitting in their office "...now serving number 734...". Their job is like trying to take a sip of water from a fire hose. The intent is to take a drink. The result is they take a shower!

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

@NewsReader - it's not even that. They don't see 3/4 of the kids they're supposed to. Talk to any HS graduate from a Gwinnett County school and they will tell you. some have never even seen/talked to their GC. My kids only talked to their GC to request sending transcripts to colleges. In the GCPS they offer no guidance or counseling, they collect a paycheck.

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Sandykin 2 years, 4 months ago

It's not only tough for the kids to get in to see their guidance counselor, try being a parent and placing a call to your child's counselor. I guarantee that you will be leaving a voice mail message and the counselor will get back to you in about a week. When my son was missing his Language Arts class and tried to get in to his counselor to get his schedule fixed, he was unable to get in to her office. I tried calling, but got no where. I ended up making a visit in person, had to wait and actually ended up being helped by someone who was not even a counselor.

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Don 2 years, 4 months ago

Sickandtired-Most teachers in the elementary level that have taught in a trailer found it to be a great experience. The kids focus much better and do not have to run to the bathroom every second. The trailers are a more isolated environment which allows the kids to focus more.

Most of the text books have an online version now. Would like to know what schools have kids sharing and having no text books, have two in school and have never experienced this.I think by the year 2016 text books will be gone and everything online. Look at the test scores coming out from Gwinnett and do the comparison.

So on your theory of Wilbanks making more than the governor should no one make more than the president of the US? I hate to tell you this but there are positions within the state that make more than the governor as well.

You know you get out of it what you put into it. If you do not like the system then change to another school or go private or move.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

Don, NGHS on books. All of my children were in trailers at some point and during various stages of their school careers. All hated it. The trailers are hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It is a problem if a child DOES have to go to the bathroom during inclement weather. My children all complained of distractions in the trailers like lawn crews blowing leaves forcing a teacher to scream or not teach at all. Hard copy text books will never be "gone" IMO. I have two in college now and not even their books are online. JAW is not worth what what he gets paid, he's a shop teacher. Thank goodness after 9-11 he didn't get his bunker he wanted! And lets not forget the millions of $$$ JAW spent developing the Gateway test........talk about FUBAR!!! the GCPS is the reason I put my children in private school.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

Got news for you. The bunker was someone else's idea and because of Mr. Wilbanks it did not see fruition. You are way off base and once again writing of what you do not know. Glad your kids are in private school....now you can make their lives miserable. Just curious, since they are in private school, why do you care about GCPS so much? Your taxes? Bet you want that deduction, though.

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

Very intimate and detailed knowledge you have regarding the bunker - interesting.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

You must not have read the GDP at the time...the paper reported the bunker being the idea of a former, and now retired, AS. So, you may doubt, but you are WRONG.
But I still wonder your motivation and this conversation you had with Porter about WIlbanks. Now that is what I doubt. D Porter has too much respect for Wilbanks to have let you in on his summation of anything regarding the schools. Granted there was a time when Porter wanted more control over the GCPS SROs, but that has long since been mended. And that is a matter of record, too. he.According to Assist DAs in GC (three that I can remember) Porter works with GCPS.

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micronmike 2 years, 3 months ago

Losing the Gateway test will hurt our future. The CRCT is a below grade level memory based test. The Gateway was used to mesure application of skills. Kinda like you have to apply your skills at work, or you get fired. I wish we could drop the CRCT and use the Gateway instead. Kids don't like it because they actually have to learn something and apply skills.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

@ssilover my children are in college now. they were in private school for middle school because we couldn't subject our children to Lanier MS (back in the day bigger drug problem than NGHS). All graduated from NGHS so I DO KNOW WHAT I'M TALKIING ABOUT. Don't believe you about the bunker....I have been to my fair share of BOE meetings.....the man is a idiot and his cronies are no better. DA Danny Porter once told me Mr. Wilbanks know how to step up to line but is very careful to not cross it - this was in reference to Wilbanks failing to report thousands of serious crimes in the system. Porter looked at charges against JAW because of the non-reporting of crimes, some felonies.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

ssilover1.........don's answer isn't that great. clearly you are a former educator. Wilbanks the most astute educator? It's too early for the friday joke.

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motherinduluth 2 years, 3 months ago

Maybe ssilover meant Estuate: 1. To boil up; to swell and rage; to be agitated.[Websters]?

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suedehead 2 years, 4 months ago

SickandTired said: "All of my children were in trailers at some point and during various stages of their school careers. All hated it."

Dude, judging by the amount of complaining you do each day about almost everything, it sounds like the apples didn't fall far from the tree.

I remember sitting INSIDE a classroom and hearing mowers or blowers. So what? The teacher had to stop for a moment. It didn't seem to affect my studies or ability to gain an academic scholarship. Perhaps your kids were easily distracted or used this lame excuse because they didn't WANT to pay attention. Oh, nevermind. That would mean THEY'RE at fault, not the school. Can't have that, can we?.

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suedehead 2 years, 4 months ago

Funny yet sad. You moved your kids to a private school because of drugs at Lanier. Gee, everybody knows private school kids don't do drugs!!!

What happened to Just Say No? What happened to teaching your kids self respect and not giving in to peer pressure? What happened to you getting invoved with the school and try to decrease the amount of drug activity? Oh yeah, it's easier to blame everybody but yourself and run from the problem.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

suedehead, you don't get it. not worth anymore of my time.

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

This is just one example of what is becoming a trend:

http://eb.gmnews.com/news/2012-07-17/Front_Page/Jamesburg_hires_officer_to_investigate_enrollment.html

With GCPS enrollment all of a sudden "surging past projections" in an economy where very few families are moving, the tax payers deserve answers. With the tax base in Gwinnett dwindling due to the RE collapse, Gwinnett should only educate our own children. I plan on contacting GCPS and specifically Wilbanks on this issue, despite attempts by certain people to derail the subject at hand.

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GwinnettGirl 2 years, 4 months ago

This is an article mainly about enrollment surging. What do they expect when school starts so early? Some parents are still moving, some unaware that school started here Aug. 6, some children were still visiting the non-custodial parent in another state because that parent is a teacher whose school year ends mid-June, there are countless reasons, but not good excuses, for a student starting late. And when a student starts late, the days they miss don't count against them because their first day present is their enrollment date. If there were less time off at Thanksgiving, no day off for Election Day, and if school was in session the entire week of Dec. 17, it would be possible for the high school students to still take semester 1 exams before Christmas and schools could start the 2nd Monday in August instead of the first. It would be ideal if we could at least have all GA schools starting on the same date, but we don't live in an ideal world.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

I am all for school starting after Labor Day and then having school go until the middle of June...like back in the old days. It was soooo mmmmuuuuuccchhhh better back in the old days. j/k We always are living in a world where it is better the other way. Our relatives up north start after LD but don't get out until about June 16 or later. And much later if there is snow. Would that work here? GC doesn't have much ag now. Maybe it would work.

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GwinnettGirl 2 years, 4 months ago

Back in the late 80's and early 90's GCPS started school the 3rd Mon. in August and ended anywhere between June 5 & 10. Not a big deal. Now the big deal is to have school end by Memorial Day. Not a great idea & exactly why does school need to end that early? Schools are getting CRCT scores the last couple of days of schools and parents have vacation plans on hold as to whether or not their child has to go to summer school. They don't want teachers to come back after Memorial Day for some reason, but there's no problem having teachers return Jan. 2 and have the kids return that week for just 2 days, Thurs. & Friday. There's no way GCPS will ever move the first day of school to Sept. but a later date in Aug. could be logical. Really, the school calendar needs to be an issue at the area board meetings in the spring. Since parents have the opportunity to provide input about the curriculum/textbooks and changes, there should be input on the calendar as well. Will that ever happen? Most likely, not.

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Gwinnettsince1991 2 years, 4 months ago

FOOTBALL will never allow for a later start to the year and many of our undocumented students are transfers for sports. Been a growing trend for the last 15 years. Plausible deniability...

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

"This is an article mainly about enrollment surging. What do they expect when school starts so early?"

That is precisely the point. GCPS started a week before many of the other metro systems. In particular Dekalb, where the enrollment is dwindling and ours is "surging". Will after Labor Day be labeled "skyrocketing"? Even the best parents feel their kids are above the norm on the smart scale and can afford to miss the first few weeks. After all GCPS has a wonderful reputation and it is their "job" to get my child up to speed, that is the type mentality I am talking about.

GCPS is the largest, so it is easier to hide students that don't belong here. The taxpayers and Gwinnett kids deserve better. I hope, if recent elections are any indication, that Gwinnett taxpayers are waking up and will question everything. GCPS and our "surging" enrollment that wasn't suppose to happen included.

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ssilover1 2 years, 4 months ago

I think parents do have input through an Advisory Council, but I am not sure. Everyone will never be happy. The one thing that interferes with the year going so late is grad school for teachers. I don't know the answer. When I was in PTA and helping with registration at my children's schools, the issue most late enrollees had was that they were "on vacation" or had no reason. It was negligence. Very few, if none, said they "didn't know" that school started. Depending on the neighborhood you may have more than others that move from out of district who would not know we start so early.. This year I did think the start date was too, too early. Aug 6 is rediculous.

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kevin 2 years, 4 months ago

The FY 2013 school budget is set at $1,730,100,000. (That's billion) Divide the number of students into that figure. We are spending $10,547 to educate one student. We could be sending our kids to a private school and abolish this government "sink-hole." We would also not have that huge property tax bill. Our kids would be better off. You can thank all the sports programs and "fields" that each school must build for a large portion of that budget. There should be a place where fields are shared instead of each school building its own stadium.

Hope you taxpayers have look over this budget before laughing at this. You might find that the last laugh is on you!

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news2me 2 years, 4 months ago

I think you hit on something. The "if you build it, they will come" mentality that GCPS seems to have. We are basically asking for others to come here for a good education and top notch sports. Unfortunately, sharing sports facilities in this county won't work and you can't go back and change that.

My focus is on Dekalb, with dwindling enrollment and severe cuts in education. This is a county that also shares many of their sports facilites amongst schools. So where are all these kids that are leaving Dekalb going? Dekalb started a week behind Gwinnett this year. Where are all these Dekalb students going? Hmm - wonder where?

GCPS reputation as a good for education and sports is attractive. We have built it, they will continue to come. Most do it the ethical way, but our entitlement society has learned they can cheat and get away with it. And if it is "for their children", they feel justified.

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SickandTired 2 years, 4 months ago

@Kevin.....AMEN!!! I put 4 kids through GCPS AND private schools I have experienced the "best of both worlds". Sorry if some misinterpretated my facts and personal experience as "complaining". I have worked with Alvin Wilbanks personally so I know what I'm talking about and I have attended many BOE meetings. There needs to be a changing of the guard to truly make GCPS the world class education JAW and the BOE speak of. After all it should be about the children right?

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R 2 years, 3 months ago

I wanted to learn more about the planned bunker myself ...

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ssilover1 2 years, 3 months ago

Was a goofy reaction to 9/11--a new AS from outside the state came on and thought he had the power to do something like an electronic "bunker"--place where IT would be protected in the event of a national emergency...and I think he intended it to be a place for key personnel. Didn't happen...paper did not explain too much about why. But the whole idea was rediculous. The AS had a very short tenure in GC--not used to such a large system.Knee jerk reaction during the weeks aft. 9.11---but so did Fortune 500 companies do some of that, too. A confusing and scary time. Ask those who worked at Lucent back in that time...ask those at Seimens, also. Mistakes were made.

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ssilover1 2 years, 3 months ago

BTW, those of us at Chamber of Commerce all laughed at the many missteps about five years later. While 9/11 was obviously nothing to ever laugh about, Good ole corporate boys and gals had a few humorous stories of company memos and ideas to toss about...Uncharted water...God, I hope we never go there again. Now we've got Homeland Security. Hm.

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