The number of students is steadily growing at Plainview Public Schools, reflecting a trend county schools have been experiencing for some time.
Currently, the school is at 1,542 students, close to last year’s final headcount. Eight years ago, they had 1,388. Superintendent Karl Stricker said the number will likely tick upward as October approaches.
“It’s mostly at the elementary level,” Stricker said. “Young children are moving here, which tends to be what happens.”
Stricker said parents often plan to move while their child is still young, before they’ve formed close bonds at a particular school.
“As children age, parents are cognizant of that and they tend to move less,” Stricker said.
Parents also tend to move just before high school and just before or after eighth grade. As for the main source of the influx, Stricker said it’s not clear.
“You have kind of a bit of a mix,” Stricker said. “We’ve had students come here from Tennessee, Georgia, Texas, and some students from other parts of Oklahoma.”
Stricker said the district had 716 elementary students in 2010 and currently has 789 enrolled, a difference of 73, or three classrooms’ worth of students. The district passed a construction bond recently to build an early childhood center that would house Pre-K through second grade.
“Right now, we’re expanding,” Stricker said. “Our elementary complexes are full, and we’re building a new early childhood center, but we’re a year and a half away from that being complete.”
When finalized, the new building will be located across Plainview Road. Each grade level has six teachers, with the exception of Pre-K, which has four. Stricker said the district will likely hire more teachers once the center is complete.