There were 1.3 million fewer students enrolled in U.S. public schools in fall 2021 than there were before the pandemic began–a drop of nearly 3 percent. Given that educational funding is tied to enrollment, this development has serious implications for the availability of resources in our schools.
Some of this decline may be the result of changing demographics. But much of it can be attributed to families who have opted out of public schools during the pandemic, choosing private schools or homeschooling for their children instead.
On top of these losses, traditional school districts also have lost about a quarter of a million students to charter schools since the emergence of COVID. An analysis by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools found that charter school enrollment increased by more than 7 percent from fall 2019 to fall 2020 as families found other alternatives for their children’s education.…Read More