Since students in Iowa have the ability to attend school in a district other than the district in which they live through Open Enrollment a Superintendent needs to be aware of two important numbers when preparing the schools budget.
Certified Enrollment - made up of all residents students who live in your district whether they Open Enroll to another district or not.
Resident students + Open Enrolled Out students = Certified Enrollment
Total Enrollment Served - These are the actual K - 12 students who are in your building every day or "Butts in Seat" enrollment numbers.
Resident students + Open Enrolled In students = Total Enrollment Served
Since State Funding follows the student every district hopes that their Total Enrollment Served Number is higher than their Certified Enrollment Number.
Below are two spreadsheets, one showing enrollment numbers as counted on October 1st, 2015 by area districts, and the second showing Certified Enrollment Numbers for the same districts over the past five years. Sadly, for all the school districts included in the spreadsheets, certified enrollment numbers have declined over the past five years.
Enrollment Numbers as of October 1st, 2015
Certified Enrollment 5-Year Trend
State funding to schools is paid on a per student basis to schools. When you combine declining enrollment in Iowa's rural schools with an insufficient increase in State Supplemental Aid (1.87% average increase over the past six years) it becomes very difficult for small, rural schools to continue offering a "World Class Education," to quote the Governor.