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Belton ISD student body expected to grow along with booming housing market

Belton ISD
Posted at 10:26 PM, Oct 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-18 23:26:47-04

Belton ISD schools are projected to see a growing student body in the next ten years, according to demographers.

The Belton ISD Board of Trustees were given the projection during a workshop session held Monday evening. The demographer with Zonda Education told the board that, due to a booming housing market, the district's enrollment is expected to grow from 13,300 students to over 19,000 students by 2031.

“The growth is already happening,” said Superintendent Matt Smith. “We saw a 5.8 percent increase in students from fall 2020 to fall 2021. This equates to 733 additional students. We’re also seeing a strong retention rate, even while growing.”

The school district said it has, "46 actively building subdivisions with groundwork underway on about 1,975 lots," and that Belton ISD's strong reputation is contributing to moving families' desire to enroll their children in Belton ISD schools.

"While it is more difficult to project what that long-term growth will look like, if it continues at a similar rate, Belton ISD could have more than 14,300 elementary students, 6,500 middle school students and 8,200 high school students by 2051," said Belton ISD.

Following the workshop, the board discussed the progress being made by the Bond Exploration Committee in its regular meeting. The Bond Exploration Committee is reviewing enrollment growth, facility needs, and aspirational student experiences for the district.

“Those numbers will make you stop and catch your breath,” Smith said. “They’re also a reminder of why the conversations we’re having now and the decisions that will need to be made very soon are so important for our community and our kids.”

The group's purpose is to present recommendations to Superintendent Smith and ultimately the board of trustees. During the meeting, Smith also reminded the board of early voting, now underway, and of the $184.9 million bond election for Temple ISD.

“Public education is an investment in our future,” Smith said. “I hope anyone who is able will support our neighbors in Temple ISD in their bond election."