D65 board to analyze student demographics

The Evanston/Skokie District 65 School Board Monday night will discuss the implications of evolving student demographics in its initial look at the Opening of Schools Report for 2013-14.

The annual report slices and dices enrollment statistics, showing the ethnic and income makeup of each school and  the numbers of students in each grade as well as for the district as a whole.

The 31-page document is included in the meeting's agenda packet, replete with charts and graphs that paint a picture of enrollment trends in the district.

Total enrollment for the year is 7,258 students in pre-kindergarten through the eighth grade, which is an increase of 118 students from last year.

The ethnic breakdown shows 43 percent white, 26 percent black, 19 percent Hispanic, 5 percent Asian, and 8 percent multi-racial. 

There were fewer black and Hispanic students and more white and Asian students than the previous year.

Meanwhile, at Evanston Township High School, which covers grades nine through 12 in the same geographic area, total enrollment this year stands at 3,120, down from 3,155 last year, but higher than each of the three preceding years.

At the high school, white students represent 43.4 percent of the student body, with blacks at 30.9 percent and Hispanics at 16.6 percent.

Some 38 percent of the students this year in District 65 were from families classified as low income, compared with 43 percent last year. For classification purposes, low-income students are those from families receiving public aid, students living in institutions for neglected or delinquent children, students supported in foster homes with public funds, and students eligible to receive free or reduced lunches.

As of October 2013, some 2,323 students were eligible for free lunch while 374 were eligible for reduced lunch.

Homeless students numbered 353, an increase of 54 from last year.

There were 77 different native languages spoken among the district's student body, according to the report.

Charles Bartling

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio stations and business-oriented magazines.

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