Despite schools across the state struggling with attendance issues, Lamar Consolidated ISD has seen an increase of students this year, which will result in more state funding.
According to an investigation by KTRK-TV, LCISD has seen an increase of 3.9% of enrollment in its schools from the 2019-20 school year, one of only nine school districts in the Houston area that has seen an increase in enrollment.
The district reported to the Texas Education Agency in October that 36,523 students were enrolled in their schools this school year, an increase of 1,367 students from the 2019-20 school year.
That would lead to LCISD to receive over $7.5 million in state funding, according to the investigation.
Several other school districts in the area have seen enrollment decline due the pandemic, including Fort Bend ISD (-1.4%) and Needville ISD (-0.8%).
The decreases would cost FBISD over $5.9 million in state funding, while NISD could face a loss of $143,000.
The only other Fort Bend County school district that saw an increase in enrollment is Katy ISD, which has an increase of 1.2%, which would give them an increase of $5.6 million in funding.
Statewide, there are over 159,000 fewer students that have enrolled in school this year, which would cost schools over $872 million in funding.
The drop in enrollment is linked to a dip in elementary schools, as parents are either homeschooling their children or taking a gap year in school due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
LCISD also benefits from its fast growth, which continues to bring in more students into its schools.
Also, LCISD feels confident that it has put the proper methods in place to prevent many students from falling behind in online education.
At Tuesday’s board workshop, trustee Alex Welch asked LCISD’s chief academic officer Dr. Terri Mossige if the district expected an increase in student enrollment in summer school due to an increase of failing grades this school year.
“We’re trying for that not to happen, because intervention is the key,” Mossige said. “We’re monitoring the data that we’re getting and providing strategic support to our kids so that we don’t have that issue.”
Supt. Dr. Thomas Randle added that teachers have been reaching out to students to keep them engaged and even visiting students’ homes to help them with their education despite being at home due to the pandemic.
“We have some issues and challenges in virtual (education), but our staff has been working hard to address them now instead of waiting until the end of the school year,” Randle said.
Mossige went on to add that LCISD will offer summer school classes both online and on-campus.