Area schools mull annual student-count numbers

By Melissa Burnor

With the annual fall count day last week for Michigan schools, local schools are seeing a smaller enrollment but there is silver lining in the numbers. Blissfield reported 1,237.5 students. Britton Deerfield had 753 students.

Blissfield is down 26.5 students from last year, Blissfield Superintendent Scott Moellenberndt said. The district had 1,264 students a year ago.

“Although state funding is based on a blended count of 10 percent February/90 percent October which equates to 25 less students than the 2012-13 school year, he said. Funding for schools is based on the number of students. The state of Michigan divides out education money based on the blended enrollment count.

Britton Deerfield superintendent Charles Pelham said student enrollment in the district is down from last year but it is higher than what the district projected. The benefit is that the district took in consideration fewer students when they set the budget for the 2013-14 school year leaving a potential surplus or at least potential wiggle room in the current fiscal year budget. Next year the state may be going to a more complex mechanism to determine the exact student count in each district. The Britton Deerfield School board discussed the issue at their September board meeting that the state will require weekly student enrollment reports in the next school year.

Whiteford Schools was not able to get the information to The Advance by press time. That information will be in the Oct. 16 Advance.

Note: Blissfield school figures were updated by the district after this week’s Advance had gone to press. These are the corrected figures.

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