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Enrollment numbers show Cheney schools still growing


The Cheney School Board received its first look at enrollment numbers for the 2013-2014 school year, and early figures indicate the district is still continuing to see steady student growth.

September numbers show a total headcount of 4,198 students, compared to 4,119 students at this time last year, an increase of 79 students. Full time equivalent student figures, used for budgeting purposes, were also up as expected to 4,022.40, an increase of 107.50 from last year’s 3,914.90.

New executive director of business, finance and operations, Kassidy Probert, told the board at its Sept. 25 meeting that the two highest classes with headcount increases are in kindergarten and first-grade, with 372 and 351 students respectively. The reason he said was the beginning of all-day kindergarten.

Changes in headcount and FTE per school per grade level varied, but not by much, with the exception being Sunset and Windsor elementary schools. Both experienced large drops in headcount, Sunset by 103 students to 349 and Windsor by 217 to 419 because of the addition of the district’s fifth elementary school Snowdon, which has an enrollment of 378 students.

The district’s cohort survival rate, which is used for projection purposes through 2026, continues to enjoy a solid percent from last year. The survival rate indicates the percentage of students that move on from grade to grade.

“The majority of those are right around 100 percent until about 12th grade and the reason for that is those students can do Running Start and we don’t get to count those,” Probert said.

Also at the meeting, director of maintenance, operation and safety, Jeff McClure, gave the board an overview of summer projects in the district, highlighting the completed construction of Snowdon Elementary. All of the projects had been completed with the exception of issues at the Crunk’s Field Complex where a problem with drainage leftover from its construction has left the outfield of one of the softball fields continuously wet.

McClure said it needs new sod once better weather returns next year, and that the fields are looking better, pointing to a lot of summertime usage as an indication of this.

McClure also said work was continuing on renovating the district’s new administrative site on Needham Hill southeast of Four Lakes, particularly regarding the new facilities for Homeworks. McClure said they have had to change out undersized piping for sprinkler and fire suppression systems as well as make ADA upgrades, and were set off track with respect to their schedule when replacing old carpeting revealed asbestos.

McClure said the work was supposed to resume this past Tuesday.

“I have every confidence it will happen,” McClure told the board.

The school board’s next meeting is Wednesday, Oct. 9, at 7 p.m. at Snowdon Elementary School, 6323 S. Holly Rd. A ceremony dedicating the new school takes place at 6 p.m. prior to the regular meeting.

John McCallum can be reached at


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