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Central Coast schools suffering from enrollment drop

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (KION-TV)- Schools across the Central Coast are suffering from a lack of student enrollments and students attending classes. 

While there is no definitive factor on what might be causing this, where we live might play a role.

From elementary to middle school, schools see fewer students in the classroom.

According to the Santa Cruz County Office of Education spokesperson, Nick Ibarra, many issues can cause this.

"So there are a number of factors behind that," Ibarra said. "There are demographic changes, families having fewer children, migration patterns, but generally it's a statewide trend, and it's something we look at pretty closely."

The continuing decrease in enrollment is not just a concern to the school districts. It also has the attention of those working in the county offices of education.

One of the more surprising factors that could play a part in fewer students is Monterey County's affordability. Monterey County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Deneen Guss gave an example.

"We have families where two or three or more families will all live in one home, and that's the only way they can afford to make it here in our county," Dr. Guss said. "So it is really quite challenging."

While things may be difficult for everyone involved, teachers want to see kids in the classroom.

"Teachers miss their students when they are not at school," Dr. Guss said. "They worry about their learning, they worry about their futures, they really want their students to be at school each and every day."

Monterey Peninsula Unified has already had to close down two of its schools because of these issues, but they are looking to find a solution to this issue sooner rather than later.

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Karl Cooke

Karl Cooke is a Multimedia Journalist for KION News Channel 46


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