BRAZOS COUNTY, TX — Enrollment was down for many schools, as many parents took the home-schooling route during the pandemic.
But this coming school year, Caldwell ISD is seeing those enrollment numbers pick back up.
Lane Anderson has been homeschooled ever since Caldwell ISD students were released spring break 2020 due to the pandemic.
"He really missed his friends. We sat down and had a conversation and he just told me, 'Mom, I really want to go back to school.' So, I said 'Ok.'" Whitney Anderson, mom said.
So, the rising third-grader is going back to the public school this year.
A trend the Caldwell Elementary School principal says she sees more and more parents doing.
"We've had more parents call and inquire who chose to home school their children last year, because of the pandemic than we have in the past", Principal Erin Supak, Caldwell Elementary School said.
Bringing the school's enrollment looking more like life before the pandemic. It's a transition that can be tough on the students.
"He's worried that his friends won't remember him, and I just tried to assure him that honey they do remember you. Don't worry. They do remember you. We live in a small community," Anderson said.
"Kids are incredibly resilient. They thrive off of relationships and their friendships and just knowing that they get to come back to school and be in the building and be around their friends makes everyone excited," Supak said.
But there are ways that parents can help prepare their students to ease the transition.
"Parents talking about the transition in a positive manner is the absolute most important thing," Supak said.
April Locke, a mother of two sending her sons to school for the first time, is already taking steps to do just that.
"Both of them are so excited about that new playground. We drive by that playground a lot just to show them and remind them, 'This is what you have to look forward to so they are excited," Locke said.
Maintaining an open line of communication between parents and the school will also help create a smoother transition.
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