I asked for last year's Open Enrollment information for the West Bend School District(Open Enrollment is the policy that provides for students to opt out of public schooling and be schooled outside of the district, or homeschooled, or opt "into" our district). The statistics are these:
"On the September 21, 2007 3rd Friday count we reported 139 non-resident Open Enrolled students attending West Bend Schools and 156 resident Open Enrolled students attending school in other districts."
MORE have OPTED OUT than IN! That's an approximate loss of $1/4 million!!
Chasing kids out of a district is not a real wise strategy, especially when we have multi-million dollar building projects in mind.
I think FEW parents realize they have the Open Enrollment option. We could get some MAJOR leverage from this if we started making this information, as well as homeschooling info, available to the public. None of the board members want to be responsible for a mass exodus out of their district and a loss of A LOT of $.
Parents have many educational options between Open Enrollment, homeschooling, virtual schools, and now some private church schools that are providing free tuition. Education is VERY competitive. No parent should feel as though they are being held hostage.