Increase in students transferring schools during the pandemic

Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 11:25 AM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The pandemic created many challenges for parents and students with new regulations and schedules, and it’s led some students to switch schools.

Here at Martin Luther Elementary, enrollment increased during the pandemic, and it’s stayed that way in many of the classrooms.

“And then we did have some of them stay, some of them did, some of those families did return back to their home school just because the kids had friends there. But I would say half of that third said, ‘yeah, we like it here,’” said Denise Wolfgram, Interim Principal.

After schools started following different regulations such as class scheduling and masking, Principal Denise Wolfgram says a lot of parents decided to choose schools that aligned with their beliefs, in many cases switching from public to private schools.

“We had a major onslaught of interest in our school when they started to find out what different schools were doing and how they were going to treat instruction that year,” said Todd Benson - Head of the School.

“You know a lot of these people had never entertained the idea of a private school, and it just didn’t open their eyes when they came in and found out,” said Benson.

At Martin Luther, there were two primary reasons parents wanted to move schools.

“They were, they were frustrated with, you know, some people didn’t want their child to wear a mask. That was a big one, that one, and having school every day,” said Wolfgram.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, more than 1 in every 6 children has switched schools.

Shiloh Christian has not only maintained its increased enrollment but has even had to add three classrooms.