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Numbers of Fayette public school students drop to 2003 level

It has been known for some time that enrollment in Fayette County’s public schools has been slipping since 2007. The Citizen looked at the number of children attending private schools or being home-schooled during the same period to see what those numbers looked like. That look showed, for the most part, a relatively stable trend over time.

Information supplied by the Fayette County School System for school years 2005-2006 through the current school year is categorized by those being home-schooled and those attending one of the numerous private schools in the area.

The information shows that the number of kids home-schooled has remained relatively constant during that time period. Though not dramatic, the number attending private schools has seen more fluctuation.

The following figures by the school year show the number of students home-schooled and the number attending private schools.

Year Home Private

2005-2006 827 904

2006-2007 866 1,157

2007-2008 844 1,334

2008-2009 785 1,039

2009-2010 842 1,291

2010-2011 694 1,287

By way of comparison, the following numbers represent the year-ending school system enrollment over the past decade:

2001 - 19,832

2002 - 20,337

2003 - 21,314

2004 - 21,195

2005 - 21,531

2006 - 22,291

2007 - 22,367

2008 - 22,108

2009 - 22,047

2010 - 21,683

2011 - 21,296 (through March 1)

Conventional wisdom says that the effects of the recession are largely responsible for the decrease, with more people moving out of Fayette than moving in. And while that may be true there are likely a number of factors that are contributing to the decrease in enrollment.

One of those potential factors, and unlike many areas in metro Atlanta, is Fayette’s penchant for very limited residential and commercial growth.

Yet another factor, one that sometimes slips under the political/public radar, is the rapid growth of Fayette County’s aging population, the third fastest growing in the 10-county metro area. That population is expected to increase by 450 percent by 2040. By way of comparison, the Atlanta Regional Commission forecasts that the county’s total population, which would include school-age children, will increase by 59 percent during the same time period.

The ARC and similar population forecasts are customarily not well-received in public meetings and gatherings by some Fayette County elected officials and residents who advocate limited growth or even no-growth models.



It would be even lower if the BOE would kick out those students who are out of district.

me.and_the_sea's picture

I agree with you about the out of county kids. I've seen them and KNOW they are here.

Till recently we had a majority block vote of 3/2 that was strangling the school system. You only have to look at empty Rivers Elementary to see that. Developer welfare at our children's expense.

With the new 3/2 in the public's favor, things will change.

If you recall, Dr Todd almost quit because he couldn't make a difference. He had to sit helplessly and watch. Marion Key? What can I say? The woman is a Saint. They both waited it out and we now have Dr Tolbert. They now have a controlling vote, or should I say, the citizen and their children now have a controlling vote.

It is going to take them a year or two, to correct what has happened. But thank God someone is a the wheel turning the Titanic.

You have to understand something about the out of county kids. The more kids in the schools, the more need to build more. The more need to buy more land and to sell the excess off to developers.

Then the developers and certain people are very happy. They have new houses around a brand new school and that new school becomes a selling tool for their new development.

The local kids loose and the taxpayers loose. The winners are the developers. Get it? And that is why Rivers is empty. We didn't need it in the 1st place.

me.and_the_sea's picture

one down and two to go. We have one on the BOE right now that doesn't even have a 4 yr degree. But then we also have a teacher that has been working for us for, what is it now, 4-5 yrs that still isn't accredited? Ask yourself, how did that happen when so many people out there can't find a job?


We've been unhappy with the school system, here, from day one since we moved here. Count us as one of the many families who dis-enrolled their kids from the Fayette County school system this year, opting for private school instead. We are so much happier and so are our kids. Fayette County had better get a handle on their dysfunctional schools/teachers/administrators ASAP or we will all suffer the consequences. One of the many reasons that people move here, and why we did, are for the schools, and with that gone, it will have a detrimental impact on all of us.

For those looking for a private school, check out Counterpane Montessori in Fayetteville. It is a great environment for kids!

PTC Observer's picture

Now that sounds just like a liberal, public schools are for the masses, not for my kids.

So, I suppose you might just support selling off the public schools to private interest? That way everyone could enjoy a private education, right Main? Nothing like competition to create excellence and choice for consumers. I'm not going to roll in the political mud with you. This has everything to do with personal choices and choosing the right educational environment for kids/teens. Public school isn't for every child/teen, nor is private school the right environment for some others. What if my child was autistic and we chose to put him/her in a smaller, less frantic environment with more one-on-one attention from the teacher(s)? What if my kid was being bullied and not protected by the administrators? You don't know my situation or anyone else's so keep your nasty comments to yourself. The main purpose for my post in the first place is the fact that the dysfunctional school system is losing students... get it? This WILL affect ALL of us...get it? My kid told me about the daily fights at his school, violence, drugs, bullying, and this is at one of our premier high schools, McIntosh. The administrators let it happen, daily, the fighting between students, violence, drugs, DAILY...get it? The system is broken and parents are dis-enrolling their kids. If our schools go down the drain and people stop moving here for our "great" schools, who do you think will suffer? We will. The schools are the heart of any community...get it? You can kiss your property values goodbye, if this happens.

PTC Observer's picture

Justify it anyway you want to, public schools don't work, never have and never will.

You are simply an example of someone making a rational decision based on this. But as a liberal you could never give up on the idea that public schools are the "ideal" for the masses. They are not. As a matter of fact there is a high percentage of students in school that don't want to be there and their parents don't care if they are there either.

I don't mean to be nasty, that's not my intent. My intent is to show an contridiction with your beliefs and your actions. You are doing what is best for your children, while not allowing others freedom to chose.

Let's get rid of public schools, go to a voucher system and allow competiition for great schools, let those that can't produce results go out of business and take their lousy adminsitration with them.

As for property values, you just told me that our schools are going down a hole, how's that going to protect our property values? Public schools don't work.

...and stop your narrow-minded assault. You don't know me or have a clue about my "ideals" or my beliefs regarding this issue. I'm in favor of vouchers and I believe that our public schools, across the country, are broken and in need of repair. You really should stop looking at all liberals as the problem and realize that there are actually some issues where we agree. However, I know you like to argue just for the sake of arguing. You probably drive your spouse/partner absolutely crazy.

The Wedge's picture

[quote=Main Stream]...and stop your narrow-minded assault[/quote]


...out from under your rock, Wedge. Miss me?

The Wedge's picture

[quote=Main Stream]...out from under your rock, Wedge. Miss me?[/quote]


PTC Observer's picture

I drive all those that believe that giving up individual freedom to a government is way to "social justice" and "equality"......crazy.

I guess that's why I seem to get under your skin.

You may be surprised that I am not a conservative.....I don't like conservatives for the same reason I don't like liberals...they want to control, regulate, and otherwise enslave me....and everyone else.

I don't argue to argue, I argue in an attempt to persuade based on the fundamental truth that we should be free to choose for ourselves how to regulate our lives as long as we don’t infringe on others rights.

Read my footnote.

"...we should be free to choose for ourselves how to regulate our lives as long as we don’t infringe on others rights."

Great! Then you must be pro-choice as well, right?

PTC Observer's picture

a person that believes it is wrong and immoral to take a life of the unborn.

However, my government should not enforce my personal belief on others.

Does that clear it up for you?

Either we have individual liberty or we don't.

The Wedge's picture

[quote=PTC Observer] my government should not enforce my personal belief on others.[/quote]
Government creates laws that are the accumulation of the majority's personal beliefs. Nominally we are to be backstopped by the constitution, but anymore that is just a backstop in theory, not in practice.

PTC Observer's picture

We have three gifts from God, these are individuality, freedom, and property and without these we cannot be called men. These three gifts precede all human legislation and are superior to it. Legal plunder is as wrong as individual robbery. Justice is the protection by our government through law of these three gifts. Although mankind is not perfect, all hope rests upon the free and voluntary actions of persons within the limit of individual right; law or force is to be used for nothing except the administration of universal justice. Government is legitimized through the execution of the law in the protection of these gifts, to the extent that government uses law to deprive men of their God given rights, it becomes illegitimate and corrupt.

Life is defined as the interaction of humans with their environment, people, things, transformative labor, etc. Through honest labor (your life) you create property in the form of money or other valuable assets, now re-read paragraph one.

In a democracy, a band of thieves can vote to take your property, it doesn’t make it right, and it is legal plunder. The Constitution was an attempt to protect our God given rights, but it has been corrupted by interpretations like yours. Rights have nothing to do with “the majority’s personal beliefs”. This is a socialist concept.

Hope this clears this matter up for you.

Property is a God given right?

I'm just trying to keep up.

PTC Observer's picture

First, your life is finite and therefore valuable to you. Property is the outgrowth of your life (your labor), therefore your property is as much of your life as your life. If you steal someone's property you have taken part of their life.

Do you understand?

Now I understand the point you were trying to make in the first post.

A documentary we all need to see, "Waiting for Superman"... "a hot-under-the-collar documentary about the failings of the American school system."

PTC Observer's picture

and it's broken beyond repair.

Time to give freedom of choice a chance.

Everyone should have a choice, including you Main Street. AND you shouldn't have to pay for a broken, unworkable, public school system at the same time.

BHH's picture

The government run school system has been broken since before the first days of forced integration. And that's not to say that this problem didn't need fixing too.

But the hate of the governments force in the school systems still exists today in the parents and the students. That hate presents itself in various ways.

The government still refuses to recognize this fact and persists in perpetrating this farce on our society to this day.

State run schools are broken and have been for a long long time.


Union tells Racine and Kenosha businesses to post signs or face boycott
Wisconsin News
The signs read, “This Business Supports Workers’ Rights.” Union representative Jim Parrett called it a “simple, subtle and noncontroversial statement.”

The state employees’ union council for the Racine and Kenosha areas has told businesses it will target them for boycotts unless they show support for workers’ rights.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel obtained a letter from council field representative Jim Parrett that was sent to businesses that did not post signs that union members gave them
The letter said failing to put up the signs would result in a public boycott of those businesses

BHH's picture

Unions have their place but it's not in running our school systems.

Teachers salaries are out of control. They deserve a decent wage for their education level, skills and hours worked, but it is a part time job.

These jobs are better left to those who love it and not those in it for the career.


suggarfoot's picture

It is only my opinion but, I think people got ..TIRED.. of telling of the bullying and the fighting. I feel there was a certain 'core' that was seeing to it these kids weren't taken out, or at best, a few.

They ..NEEDED.. those kids to show overcrowding.

It is very sad because I know I took a hit to move here. I moved for the schools. The taxes are extremely high, but I did without to move and put my kid in public school.

I complained bitterly to my BOE rep that there were out of county kids here. I was told by that person, I was a racist. Race had nothing to do with it. When you look around and see more of one group going to the schools than you know lives there, it isn't hard to figure out. Especially with the out of county tags.

Gail, Blogging under two names simultaneously. Impressive!

suggarfoot's picture

Nice to see you awake Janet but I only have one Id thank you! Where did you learn these observation techniques, Wall Street? Surely not at our empty schools!

Cyclist's picture

"Yet another factor, one that sometimes slips under the political/public radar, is the rapid growth of Fayette County’s aging population, the third fastest growing in the 10-county metro area."

Unlike roundabout, I plan not to contribute to that statistic.

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

PTC Observer's picture

planning to move or die?

Cyclist's picture

Oh, the plan. Retire and move to Florida - live in a double-wide trailer one which when I'm done cutting the grass the mower stays until I feel like cutting again. I'll ride my bike to the beach and catch fish and buy liquor on Sunday!!! :-)

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

PTC Observer's picture

right behind you.

You do realize of course that double-wides are tornado magnetics?

According to my Christian teaching, God gave man seven gifts- wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, piety, fortitude and fear of the Lord.
There are three theological virtues faith, hope and charity. What holy book did you find your three in?

PTC Observer's picture

It's good to be taught by your faith and I commend you for it.

The idea of the rights of man developed from a philosophy of Natural Law. Natural Law, is a precept that has been developed by man based on both logic and church teachings. Church teachings followed Natural Law because in the heart of man there dwells a fire for freedom and freedom is a primary theme throughout the Bible.

Acts 26:32 - illusion to physcial slavery
John 8:32-36 - illusion to slavery to sin

There are many more that I could site here.

Here is a link to Wiki for you to read about the background on Natural Law, if you have questions let me know.

Thank you for asking this question, it's an important one.

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