An annual audit of student enrollment for the Nebo School District has produced results that administrators are getting accustomed to seeing: unprecedented growth.
The total number of students enrolled in Nebo schools has grown from 17,871 a year ago to 18,335 students as of October, nearly 3 percent more than the previous year. Since 1989, more than 2,000 new students have enrolled in the district, and the Utah State Office of Education projections indicate that Nebo enrollment will continue to grow two to three percent a year - enough to fill a small elementary school."Our traditional growth was 1-2 percent a year for several years, but recently we have increased by about four percent a year in the last four years alone," said Jack Leifson, Nebo School District spokesman. "(The growth) has never reached a saturation point or backed off, it hasn't let up at all."
Much of the overwhelming growth can be traced to increased development in the Mapleton, Larsen and Salem areas of the district. Leifson said the Elk Ridge and Woodland Hills areas have experienced the greatest amounts of growth.
Growth like that makes administrators thankful they have money from the $30 million bond election passed in May to build several new schools and remodel old schools.
"With the bond, we can handle all of this growth for a while now," Leifson said. "We are glad the public can support these things, because it could be a real mess right now without the bond money."
Leifson said he expects construction of several new schools to be completed by September 1995, but warns that more could be needed in the near future if the district growth remains high.
"Before this growth occurred, we thought we were doing what we were supposed to do to control it," Leifson said. "We never experienced that kind of rapid growth before and it was a new phenomenon for us."