Declining enrollment may spell doom for some Michigan school districts

Dec 26, 2012

DETROIT (AP) - Declines in school enrollment across the Detroit area are driving school districts into debt and forcing administrators to make additional cuts.

Data reviewed by the Detroit Free Press shows that during the five years spanning fall 2008 to fall 2012 enrollment declined 17 percent in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne county school districts. Highland Park enrollment declined 69 percent, while Detroit dropped 29 percent. Romulus and Inkster declined 26 percent.

Overall, 20 Detroit-area districts had double-digit enrollment losses.

Among the 10 districts that had the biggest percentage declines, nine are operating with a deficit.

Demographer Kurt Metzger says enrollment declines are likely to continue because the number of live births in Michigan was down nearly 16 percent from 2000 to 2010.

State aid is tied to student enrollment.

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