New Student Enrollment Capped at Hillsdale and Hunter Elementary Schools
Considerable overcrowding and class sizes above district class size standards has led to capping enrollment at Hillsdale Elementary. The cap at Hillsdale went into effect for all new students who move into the attendance area after August 13, 2019. The recommendation deemed “moving in” as having closed on the purchase of a home in the Hillsdale attendance area. (Note: Maps of both the Hillsdale and Hunter enrollment cap proposals are at the bottom of this page)
The cap at Hillsdale went into effect after the Board approved an administrative recommendation. School District Policy 601.30, Class Size and Load, sets the following class size standards for elementary grades across the district:
Kindergarten, grades 1, 2 25 students
Grade 3 26 students
Grades 4, 5 32 students
Class sizes at Hillsdale for the 2019-2020 school year are currently as follows (the grades highlighted in yellow indicates the grades that are over capacity):
Kindergarten 20.0 students per class
First Grade 29.0 students per class
Second Grade 27.6 students per class
Third Grade 26.2 students per class
Fourth grade 31.75 students per class
Fifth grade 33 students per class
The recommendation stems from a recommendation made by the Attendance Area Committee approved by the Board on April 9, 2019. The committee and various patrons attempted several ways to reduce overcrowding at Hillsdale. In each case, one or more schools reached student enrollment numbers that were not operationally feasible. Each scenario resulted in the conclusion that, at recent and/or projected enrollment increases, there are more students than there is space available either at Hillsdale, at surrounding schools, or both.
At the April 9, 2019 meeting, the Attendance Area Committee made the following recommendation:
- If Hillsdale’s enrollment reaches a level that requires scheduling regular classrooms in non-classroom space or if multiple classrooms in the same grade have more students than the district’s class size standards, the recommendation is that enrollment be capped at Hillsdale until a new school opens. The cap would only apply to residents who move into the Hillsdale attendance area after the cap is approved. The decision regarding which school(s) to bus students to from the Hillsdale attendance area will be determined when a recommendation to cap enrollment is brought to the Board of Trustees
Administration recommended that students who move into the Hillsdale attendance area after the cap on enrollment that live on the West side of Eagle Road be provided busing to Siena Elementary and students who move into the East side of the Hillsdale attendance area be provided busing busing to Silver Sage Elementary. These are the only two schools in the Victory and Lake Hazel Middle School attendance areas (where Hillsdale students attend after finishing elementary school) that have enough space to remain near or under capacity until a new school can open in the fall of 2021 if a proposed March 2020 school bond measure is approved by voters.
Enrollment at Hunter Elementary was capped at the April 9, 2019 regular meeting of the Board of Trustees based on a recommendation made by the Attendance Area Committee. At the time Hunter’s enrollment was over 800 students with a capacity of 650. With no more classrooms available to keep class sizes at or near district standards, enrollment was capped for the remainder of the 2018-2019 school year and continues through the 2019-2020 school year.
The enrollment cap will be lifted after the district’s newest elementary school, Pleasant View, opens for the fall of 2020. Pleasant View is being built on the east side of Blackcat Road between McMillan and Chinden Roads. At that time, a portion of the Hunter Elementary School attendance area will become part of the Ponderosa Elementary attendance area. Students who move into this part of Hunter’s attendance area will be provided busing to Ponderosa. Students who move into the remainder of Hunter’s attendance area will be provided busing to Paramount Elementary.