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More student populations in Southwest stay the same or grow than shrink

Oregon Department of Education sheds light on enrollment figures


This school year has brought an increase in student enrollment both statewide and locally — for the most part.

According to data announced last month by Oregon Deputy Superintendent Rob Saxton on behalf of the Oregon Department of Education, 563,714 students were enrolled in K-12 public schools last fall, an increase of 2,768 students, or .49 percent over 2011-12 enrollment.

Likewise, total enrollment in Portland Public Schools in 2012-13 was 46,581, an increase of 391 students over last year.

Of those students, this year, 23,733 (51 percent) were male and 22,848 (49 percent) were female, percentages virtually unchanged since 2011-12.

Total student enrollment decreased by 149 students Wilson High School, while Lincoln High School gained 39.

Student populations shrank slightly at Bridlemile, Hayhurst, Maplewood, Rieke and Stephenson elementary schools.

Enrollment was on the upswing, however, at Ainsworth, Capitol Hill and Chapman elementary schools and Jackson and East-West Sylvan middle schools.

Robert Gray Middle School’s student population of 422 remained the same from 2011-12 to 2012-13, as did Markham Elementary School’s population of 383.

In the Riverdale School District, there was a downturn in enrollment, with 321 students at Riverdale Grade School and 241 students at Riverdale High School this year, compared to 322 grade school students and 252 high school students last year, a loss of 12 students total.

"I think we saw about a 2 percent decline, and we are attributing it mostly to normal fluctuations...i.e., families moving in and out," said Riverdale School Board Chairman Michael Gunter. "We also have a small first grade class moving through, and I think fewer international students."

Graduation rates

The ODE also recently released data on Oregon's graduation rates.

According to the data, which measures the percentage of students who started school in 2008-09 and graduated in four years, Oregon's 4-year graduation rate for 2012 was 66.84 percent, up only slightly from the previous year's rate of 67.6.

But some individual high schools in Southwest Portland fared much better.

Wilson saw a nearly 7 percent increase, from 77.75 percent in 2010-11 to 84.41 in 2011-12.

Riverdale High School jumped nearly five percentage points, from 89.36 percent in 2010-11 to 94.23 in 2011-12.

A point of pride for Portland Public Schools this year was the fact that Wilson, along with several other high schools in the district, posted graduation rates for black students that were equal to or better than those for white students.