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Newswest 9 | Midland, Texas | newswest9.com

Charter School enrollment numbers up for 2020-2021 school year

A big part of the reason for that? The school offers smaller class sizes. That means more students can get that one-on-one time with teachers.

MIDLAND, Texas — With school just around the corner....many families in the Basin are trying to decide where to send their students in the fall.

At Premiere High and Classical, enrollment is up 25% this year.

In fact, the charter schools have out grown this building and are now expanding down the road.

A big part of the reason for that is because the school offers smaller class sizes.

That means more students can get that 1:1 time with teachers.

With virtual learning becoming the norm in education, more and more students are enrolling in responsive education charter schools.

"We've seen an uptick partially because of the way our curriculum is designed," said Jarret Hostas, the Campus Directer for Premier High School.

"The way that it is done we can go back and forth with being in class and online with our self-pace curriculum and we have a smaller class size so there's more 1:1"

 Each student gets the technology they need to do virtual learning.

 "Every single student has their own Chromebook. We also have areas where we can provide hotspots to those families so if they actually don't the district will issue them if a hotspot they can use as much as they want to accomplish their school work," said Hostas.

 Another big draw to charter schools? They're affordable because they're publicly funded and privately run .

 "When I bring parents in, the first thing the hand goes up and they ask what's the cost, curriculum, Chromebooks... It's 100% free so that's a big benefit," Hostas said.

But just because the school is smaller, with around 150 students in the high school and 350 in Kindergarten through 8th grade, teachers have been training all summer on how to teach in the classroom AND from home.

 "When Covid started we were building the airplane as it was flying. Now we are putting together a plan to be prepared for a response for what's coming our way. Our staff is coming next week and we'll be talking about the common issues we faced in the spring so we're better prepared," said Hostas.

 As far as differences between public shools and charter schools when it comes to COVID-19, there's not a huge difference.

Charter schools will follow the same TEA guidelines that public schools do.

They also try to have a similar calendar. Students here head back to school August 19th along with ECISD students. 

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