Enrollment in home-school program rises

Enrollment is up by a net gain of about 45 students in District 51’s Mesa Valley Vision Home and Community Program for home-schooled students.

The program began in fall 2008 with about 225 students. Enrollment jumped to about 280 students last fall before climbing to 326 students this fall.

The school gained 113 new students this year, according to Vision Interim Director Susan Scofield, who attributed the loss of nearly 70 students between this school year and last school year to the economy.

“A lot of people moved to find work or had a parent go back to work so the student had to go back to traditional school,” Scofield said.

Scofield said she expected tough economic times to bring more students into the Vision Program from private schools that charge tuition, but so far she has only counted nine new students that came from private schools. The same number of students arrived from charter schools.

Twenty-nine new students went to District 51 schools last year, 25 are starting kindergarten, five students were enrolled in online schools last year, two students moved in from outside Mesa County and one student is a recovered dropout.

The largest group of new students is the 33 who were independently home-schooled last year. Scofield said she believes the Vision Program can attribute much of its growth to home-schooled students and their parents gaining trust in the program, which connects home-schooled students with mentor and enrichment opportunities, forms a link between District 51 and home-schoolers, and brings students together to take CSAP tests each spring.

Scofield said she believes the program has reached a healthy enrollment count and will likely level out after this year.


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