The Fort Mill school board is still eying a potential record-breaking 14,000 student enrollment this year.
Current enrollment stands at 13, 974 students, superintendent Chuck Epps said. That number represents a growth of 916 students compared to this time last year.
The growth’s domino effect will impact staff needs, transportation and other related costs, Epps said.
“This will become cumulative,” he said. “It just increases everything. We’re getting back to that phenomenal growth, I believe.”
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Epps said the fast-rising numbers also mean growth is difficult to accurately project. Prior to opening Day Aug. 15, the district said it had 13,992 students, but expected it would have to subtract no-shows after the first 10 days of the new school year. However, Epps and other school officials expect the student population to meet or exceed 14,000 before long.
Despite educating more students than ever, the first week of school went smoothly, Epps said.
“As far as I’m concerned it’s one of the better openings we’ve had,” Epps said. “That’s commendable that our people do such a good job. I complement everybody in the planning stages and in the implementation of the first day.”
The elementary private security officer program that began this year is also off to a good start, with officers placed at Doby’s Bridge, Orchard Park, Pleasant Knoll and Riverview elementary schools, Epps said. The district decided to hire private security for its four elementary schools that were without school resource officers.
“It certainly makes me have a secure feeling and I hope parents feel the same,” Epps said.
Enrollment as of Aug. 30, 2016:
Fort Mill High: 2,135
Nation Ford High: 1,976
Banks Trail Middle: 774
Fort Mill Middle: 836
Gold Hill Middle: 900
Springfield Middle: 743
Riverview Elem: 682
Fort Mill Elem: 817
Gold Hill Elem: 799
Orchard Park Elem: 757
Springfield Elem: 655
Pleasant Knoll Elem: 612
Sugar Creek Elem: 763
Tega Cay Elem: 767
Doby's Bridge Elem: 758