The West Bend School Board met last night in a committee of the whole to discuss a few things. One item on the agenda is a closer look at enrollment in the district. The data is very interesting.
The school district has 524 fewer kids than it did in 2010. That’s a 7.7% decline. And the trend appears to be accelerating. It is not unreasonable to think that the West Bend School District will be a 5,000 student district within the next decade.
I would also note that when the West Bend School District was educating 6,803 kids in 2010, they spent about $74.1 million. Last year, with 254 fewer kids, they spent a total of $82.6 million. Fewer kids. More money. I realize that school district spending isn’t linear – there are a lot of fixed costs. But over time, all fixed costs become variable costs. If the district is educating 7.7% fewer kids (or 10% fewer, or 20% fewer), then shouldn’t the taxpayers reasonably expect a commensurate decrease in spending?