The Deerfield School District decided not to cap the number of students that can open enroll into Deerfield in the next school year.
The board voted on Jan. 20 to not set limits on open enrollment numbers for the 2020-2021 school year.
Director of Pupil Services Barb Callahan said that based on Deerfield’s enrollment numbers, administrators decided not to set limits at any grade level for general open enrollment. She added that special education is a little different based on caseloads.
“We want to keep our numbers open to anyone who wants to come,” said Callahan.
Callahan explained that sometimes caps can discourage families from choosing to enroll in Deerfield. If families with more than one child are interested, but can’t enroll in the proper grade due to caps, Callahan said they may look elsewhere.
Once approved, open enrollment numbers cannot be changed, or amended based on actual enrollment, after January.
Board Vice President Lisa Sigurslid asked if there were certain grade levels where increased enrollment would cause another section to be needed for next year.
Superintendent Michelle Jensen said that each year sees a turnover of families into and out of the district. When open enrollment is capped at a grade level, and students leave, the district can’t offer available spaces to additional students who want to open enroll into Deerfield, because the limit has already been set.
“We’ve never had a great influx of open enrollment that’s ever caused a problem for us. At this point, we felt like it’s never been a problem for us, and we don’t want to discourage anyone from coming,” Jensen said.
Other Board Actions:
• Deerfield School Board incumbents Autumn Knudtson and Shelly Mack filed candidacy papers by the deadline. They are both seeking reelection to the school board and will be listed on the spring election ballot.
• The board also approved 10 community members for the Citizen Advisory Committee. First meeting is tentatively scheduled for February.
• DES Principal Melinda Kamrath announced the 2020 summer school dates. Session A will run from June 15 to July 3 and session B will be held from July 6 to July 17.