Return to Headlines

Exploring five to ten year demographic projections

students stand outside Adams Elementary School(02/08/2024) The Anoka-Hennepin School Board explored enrollment projections at its meeting Nov. 27 in a presentation by Hazel Reinhardt, a consultant who conducted a comprehensive study of the school district and its communities. Reinhardt served as the first demographer in the state of Minnesota.

The study was intended to provide district leaders with a comprehensive analysis of the current and future student population to best inform future planning and decision-making - with a focus on five-year projections out to the 2028-29 school year; and ten-year projections out to the 2032-33 school year. 

Highlights included:

  • the effects of COVID-19,

  • enrollment history and future projections,

  • alternative education options,

  • birth rates in the community,

  • housing and migration.

Looking ahead
A focus on potential housing developments informed opportunities for growth, which may impact nine of the district’s 25 elementary schools. While rapid growth has occurred in recent years in pockets of the school district, district enrollment has been - and is expected to - remain steady. 

The study outlined the school board's commitment to proactive planning for the future, anticipating and responding to growth in portions of Blaine and Ham Lake, and the city of Dayton. Projections indicate that recent elementary school boundary adjustments that went into effect in the fall of 2023 will likely maintain balanced enrollment across the district.

Factors impacting enrollment and community trends
Kindergarten classes have been lower than pre-pandemic levels for a number of reasons including fertility, lower birth rates, housing mixes and alternative options such as non-public schools. 

  • While home school rates initially increased during the pandemic, they have since been declining. 

  • In 2020, births in the United States were the lowest they have been since 1979. 

    • The rate went up in 2021 by 1 percent.

    • Rates went flat again in 2022.

  • Mobility in the district and across the country has declined. Housing demands are typically influenced by mobility in communities. Reasons highlighted were:

    • immigration from abroad has slowed,

    • while more young adults are moving out of state - which impacts statewide and community birth rates.

The Anoka-Hennepin School District's commitment to addressing the changing demographics reflects a proactive approach to balanced budgeting and efficiency in public service to the community.