During a presentation at last night’s board meeting, Kent Alberty asked if the actual number of white students was declining, or if whites simply now comprise a smaller share of a growing student population. He was told the number of white students probably wasn’t declining.
But actually, it is.
I’ve added up the number of white students from the SDDOE’s fall enrollment ethnicity reports for the last four years. Here’s what they show for the Sioux Falls public schools:
The enrollment numbers reported to the school board Monday are counted a bit differently from those that end up in the state’s ethnicity reports. But the math from the 2011 and 2012 school board reports indicates there are roughly 43 fewer white students enrolled this fall compared to last fall. And 449 more non-white students.
If the district’s racial makeup continues to move by 1.5 percentage points each year, as it did this year, white students will account for fewer than half the district’s students by 2026.
* Multi-racial was added as an option in 2010, which likely accounts for some of the decrease.