Right now the Traverse City district needs all the bodies it can get. It lost more than 150 students in 2007 and another 310 last fall. Traverse City officials say some of those are students whose families are moving out of the district; yet other area districts are seeing a surge in enrollment.
Woodland School, a K-8 charter that opened in 1996, has capped enrollment at about 200 students. Grand Traverse Academy, a K-12 charter, has seen enrollment grow consistently and has expanded twice since 1999. This year's enrollment is more than 1,100. Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools also runs a private K-12 program that is usually at capacity.
A time of state cutbacks and budget shortfalls may not seem ideal for expansion, but TCAPS must continue to lure students, and keeping the Talented and Gifted program intact -- or even expanding it -- is one way to do that.