Student enrollment, aging buildings, and Chromebooks; The Vigo County School Corporation holds its State of the Schools address

The Vigo County School Corporation held its State of the Schools address in West Terre Haute. See the slides from the address here.

Posted: Feb 6, 2020 7:31 PM
Updated: Feb 6, 2020 10:20 PM

VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) - Vigo County School leaders gave their State of the Schools address on Thursday night.

There were two big topics of concern.

First, enrollment. We've told you in the past Vigo County is facing declining enrollment. For the first time, enrollment has dropped below 14,000 students. The new numbers were taken on Monday.

In September, the count was 14,190 students. Now, as of Monday, the number was 13,968. That's a drop of 222 students.

That means the Vigo County School Corporation could lose more than $1.4 million in state money.

The state pays the corporation a little more than $6,500 per student.

LINK | VIGO COUNTY SCHOOL CORPORATION RELEASES ENROLLMENT INFORMATION

Superintendent Rob Haworth says population decline is the most significant challenge we face.

"If we do not win these students back or if we don't welcome people into the community who have children, that will have a significant impact on us for the next school year," Haworth said.

The next big talker, Haworth unveiled eight models the corporation wants the community to consider. They were eight potential building concepts to address aging schools.

"There are models that look at just renovating what we have. There are models that look at renovating and building some new. There are models that put new high schools right where they are at. There are models that new high schools are put somewhere else," Haworth said.

There will be public meetings to discuss the building options. The corporation hopes to have eight widdled down to four ideas by May...and then those four options down to one by December.

The corporation announced they will distribute 15,000 Chromebooks to students over the next four years.

They also talked about the great success with the new virtual school.

More than 120 students are now enrolled in Vigo Virtual Success Academy. Next year, they will open up the program to elementary and middle schoolers in Vigo County and outside of the county.

We talked with the first graduate of the program/ Gracey Rollins told us the on-line option was perfect for her.

"Going to school made me really anxious so it was really nice having the at home option," Rollins said.

She will attend the University of Las Vegas next fall.

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