District opens doors with 8,139 students

By Carolyn Cole
Published on August 23, 2008

Mustang School District’s student population held steady as youth headed back to class Wednesday and then climbed almost 100 students on the second day of class.

School officials reported 8,229 youth in class Thursday — 90 more students than were in attendance Wednesday. Student attendance climbed 89 youth compared to the second day of school in August 2007 and 76 youth from attendance statistics for May.

Student enrollment reached 8,400 youth this week, Communications Officer Shannon Rigsby said, adding school secretaries are reporting a steady stream of parents who were still enrolling children on Thursday.

“You don’t start to get in good numbers until after Labor Day,” she said. “The first day count is very deceiving.”

School officials expect Mustang’s student population to climb to between 8,300 and 8,400 youth during the school year, and Rigsby said more children are expected Monday as the district starts its first full week of class.

Even with the short week, growth was reported on the elementary school level, with 3,724 students in grades kindergarten through fifth, an increase of 88 youth from August 2007. Rigsby said none of the elementary schools were beyond capacity this year, unlike in 2005 and 2006 before Mustang Centennial Elementary was opened.
School officials were able to add classes at Mustang Valley, Mustang Trails and Lakehoma elementaries to cope with growth at those schools, she said.

“I can’t tell you what a blessing Centennial Elementary has been,” she said. “Because we added that sixth elementary thanks to the patrons in this district, when we added these classrooms this week we had places to put them. We do have buildings where all of their rooms are taken.”

Student attendance at four Mustang elementary schools continued to grow, with Mustang Valley and Mustang Trails both growing by 40 students by Thursday. Mustang Valley Elementary had 589 youth in attendance, and 661 students were in class at Mustang Trails Thursday.

Rigsby said neighborhoods are expected to continue to grow around the two schools, and a four-classroom addition at Mustang Trails Elementary is expected to be completed in September. Workers are continuing construction on six classrooms at Mustang Valley, which are expected to be finished in November.

Thirty-four additional students were in class at Mustang Elementary Thursday, bringing the school’s attendance to 618 youth. Officials reported 584 children August 2007.

Lakehoma Elementary officials reported 645 students in attendance Thursday, an increase of 24 from 621 in August 2007.

Fewer students were in attendance at Mustang Centennial and Mustang Creek elementary schools. Mustang Centennial officials reported 530 students, a decrease of 14 from the 544 youth who came to class in August 2007. Rigsby said construction on a 10-classroom addition continues with completion expected by February.

At Mustang Creek Elementary, 30 fewer youth were in class Thursday at 681 students, even though the school continues to have the district’s largest elementary attendance. In August 2007, 711 youth were in class.

In Mustang Education Center’s pre-kindergarten program, 339 students were in class Thursday. Officials accept applications for students to attend the program. Last year, 340 children were in the class in August.

Student attendance at Mustang’s middle schools held steady. At Mustang Middle School, 951 youth were in attendance, one less than in August 2007. Eight additional students were in class at Mustang North Middle School Thursday, with 914 students reported compared to 906 reported August 2007.

At the high school level, Mustang Mid-High’s student attendance climbed more than any other school, while Mustang High School’s numbers fell.

Thursday, 635 ninth-graders were reported in class, a 47-student increase from 588 in August 2007.

Mustang High School’s student attendance grew by 41 students between Wednesday and Thursday. School officials reported 1,625 on Wednesday and 1,666 on Thursday.

MHS attendance Thursday was still 52 youth less than were reported in August 2007. Thursday, 571 sophomores, 567 juniors and 528 seniors were in class.


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