School district officials today launched a campaign to attract more students to the district, even as enrollment is rising. Superintendent Valeria Silva said the effort is to teach St. Paul parents and children, including new residents, about the district's offerings.
"For the first time in ten years, our enrollment went up about seventy or eighty kids. First time in ten years," Silva said.
The enrollment campaign is part of a three-year long effort to attract 3,000 more students. St. Paul is the state's second-largest school district, with about 39,000 students in pre-kindergarten through high school. In Minneapolis, the state's third largest district, a campaign called "We Want you Back" has encouraged dropouts to return to school.
Overall, public school enrollment in Minnesota districts is steady to declining, as the number of school age children in the state's population declines. The exceptions include St. Paul and some other districts with expanding immigrant populations.
The $225,000 enrollment campaign is funded by the St. Paul Foundation and the F. R. Bigelow Foundation.