Unofficial student counts are "fairly stable" in grades one through eight but overall enrollment appears to be down in Reynoldsburg schools this year, according to Superintendent Steve Dackin.

Unofficial student counts are "fairly stable" in grades one through eight but overall enrollment appears to be down in Reynoldsburg schools this year, according to Superintendent Steve Dackin.

"Most of that is occurring, as I see it, in two places: one on the kindergarten level and one on the high school level," Dackin told the Reynoldsburg school board last week.

He said total enrollment fell from 6,811 last year to 6,681 this year, with most of the losses occurring at the high school. The unofficial enrollment count for the high school this year is at 2,104. The official certified count from the Ohio Department of Education last year was 2,174.

"Last year's official count for kindergarten enrollment was 448 and the unofficial count for this year is at 409," Dackin said.

He said the ODE has yet to deliver the official certified count for this year.

He wasn't sure when those figures would be released.

"When we look at these trends, we have fluctuation at different grade levels every year," Dackin said.

He said there may be a number of factors contributing to lower high school enrollment; for example, some students enroll in other area schools, such as the Columbus Metro high school or at Eastland Fairfield Technical Center.

"There are a number of factors there and we haven't analyzed why, but I think what we'd like to do is start doing some exit interviews with the high school kids' parents when they leave the district and ask that question," Dackin said.

"It appears to me our enrollment in kindergarten is down largely -- and I have no quantitative data to support this, but it's a hunch that it's all-day, every-day kindergarten," he said. "I'm hearing more and more from folks who have made decisions to send their children to all-day, every-day kindergarten."

The Reynoldsburg district offers half-day kindergarten.

"It looks to me that they come back to us in first grade," Dackin said. "I mean, our enrollment in first grade this year is up by 40 kids and overall, our one through eight enrollments seems to be fairly stable."

dowen@thisweeknews.com