The impact of open-enrollment on expending courses

Elizabeth Serrano Mier, Review Staff

Feature Photo By: Elizabeth Serrano Mier – Geography teacher Mr. Snyder stands as he observes his freshmen class working independently. In just this class, he has more than 28 students.

As the school year unfolds, there has been an attempt to fix an issue that has been occurring for a while now at Rangeview High School.

Most students and staff are disappointed to see an increase in students per course each year. This has been an issue at Rangeview that has increased over the years. How come each year there seems to be more and more students?

Even though additional classes and teachers were added into this school year to reduce the huge amount of students, it only went towards a few courses.

Often times, students look at how big classrooms are but they don’t question why they’re so huge.

A reasonable explanation could be simply open-enrollment. As defined by Merriam-Webster, open-enrollment is “voluntary enrollment of a student in a public school other than the one assigned on the basis of residence.” As a public school, when someone applies through open-enrollment, the school isn’t required to allow entry.

In the 2018-2019 school year, there are 595 freshmen, 540 sophomores, and 509 juniors. Addition to that, Rangeview Principal Fay adds that there are at least 100 students per class that are open-enrolled into the school.

Keep in mind it’s not easy to get into a school if the students’ address doesn’t correspond to that specific school. There is a whole process that needs to be done at least four months before the new school year.

Despite gaining over 100 students per class in just open enrollment, there is still a waiting list throughout the school year. Principal Fay states there are at least 200 students on the waiting list.

Should there be a limit to how many students are accepted through open-enrollment? Looking into Rangeview’s classes and hallways, many students say there isn’t enough room for all the students. There are many negative issues due to the overflowing of students. This is affecting students’ learning and teachers’ ability to teach, some say.

“It’s hard for me to get to know the kids, it’s hard for me to get to know the families,” Freshman physics teacher, Ms. Friend continues, “I spend so much time grading and I just don’t feel like I have the relationships with kids. Now that the classrooms are smaller again, I can actually go over there and talk to the kids that are quieter.”

There are ways to reduce class sizes. Although budget is an abstain, additional teachers and more classrooms would definitely be an advantage. Open-enrollment is a good opportunity for many students; however, limiting how many students enroll into Rangeview could also help the issue.  

There are a couple of positives to open-enrollment since it allows us to meet new people, which allows the school to be more diverse.

“I feel like the environment here at Rangeview is very diverse and other schools don’t have diversity,” senior Karely Nava states. “There are so many programs here at Rangeview, whether it be sports…or clubs, it gets you involved.”

For more information about additional teachers and classes, read the Raider Review’s recent article right here.