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Boston Public Schools See 4.3% Enrollment Decline This Year

The sign for the Boston Public Schools headquarters in Nubian Square. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
The sign for the Boston Public Schools headquarters in Nubian Square. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

New statistics show that enrollment in Boston Public Schools dropped about 4.3% this year with the decline concentrated among Black and Hispanic students.

The Boston Herald reports the drop in student numbers wasn't helped by the coronavirus pandemic, but it wasn’t started by it either. In the last three years, Boston schools have seen an 8.3% decline in enrollment.

The district says the decrease was most pronounced in the elementary grades, which accounted for 1,800 students of this year’s drop.

“People are having less children, and they’re having them later in life,”said Boston Public Schools Chief Financial Officer Nate Kuder during an online budget meeting this week. “So as they continue to age in place, we’re not seeing as many students enrolled in Boston Public Schools because there aren’t as many students in the city.”

And he said fewer families moved to Boston in the past year.

Kuder said the number of Black students dropped this year by 6%, Hispanic students by 5%, Asian students by 3% and white students by 2%.

Over the last three years, Black student enrollment dropped 13%. Asians and Hispanic student enrollment each dropped 8% while white student enrollment has been essentially flat.

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