Madawaska School Department enrollment up
MADAWASKA, Maine — Student enrollment is up for the Madawaska School Department, according to recent student enrollment data released during the Madawaska School Committee meeting Oct. 7.
Oct. 1 is the official date that the state looks at enrollment numbers for schools and determines how much state subsidy the school will receive, according to Valley Unified Education Service Center superintendent Benjamin Sirois.
The enrollment for the Madawaska Elementary School is 221 students and 222 students at the Madawaska Middle High School.
“With a total of 443, that is a total of plus eight from last year,” Sirois said. “The second year in a row that the Madawaska School Department enrollments have gone up slightly. So that is good for subsidy, that is good for everything.”
The number of superintendent agreements between the three school administrative units are high this year, according to Sirois who added he thought the factor was that “it is very easy to access the SAD 33 transportation here in Madawaska with a bus that just comes and turns around at the Paradis Shop ‘n Save.”
A superintendent agreement is an agreement between two SAUs and the student and their family to transfer to another SAU.
“It is easy to get that transportation,” Sirois said. “You can’t really deny a superintendent agreement unless it is blatant that the only reason they wanted to is for something like sports, where a student wants to play soccer at this school rather than that one. Those are going to be denied.”
Sirois said the parents are mindful and request transfers due to bullying or smaller class sizes — reasons that a transfer request is not often denied.
“We do try to work with administration as a front line to try to solve those problems,” Sirois said.
Many of the agreements are carried over and are from students who might have attended a school in Madawaska for years and moves, but wishes to continue their schooling where they had been most of their educational career, according to Sirois.
For Madawaska, the most incoming and outgoing agreements are between MSAD 33 and Madawaska.
The results for MSADs 27 and 33 will be shared with the respective boards later this month.