Has the economy effected your enrollment?

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Hannah's Place, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. Hannah's Place

    Hannah's Place Rookie

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    Nov 8, 2008

    I am wondering about all of you out there...I just read an article about daycare and how parents are pulling their kids out in record numbers. Why? They cannot afford it. Of course in this article it stated that her costs boiled down in my math to $132 a week on a $38,000 yr. salary but whatever -- not the point of the story. The fact remains that enrollment in my neck of the woods is horrible. Not just for me but for all of us home daycares and centers.
    SO...
    How are all of you handling this? I personally have had almost non-existent enrollment since June. I'm about to take a second job at night and also seriously considering closing up and just working at some crappy job during the day to make ends meet. I cannot be alone here. Let's here from you!
     
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  3. LvToyFoxTerrier

    LvToyFoxTerrier Rookie

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    Nov 8, 2008

    I work at a private school and yes our enrollment is way down this year. I had to switch to teaching Preschool as they did not have enough students to keep all of the Kindergarten teachers. :(
     
  4. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Nov 8, 2008

    Yes, our enrollment has really changed as well. Even before the economy turned I had to enroll much younger children in the program than I intended in order to make ends meet. Luckily-since we work in a hands on, exploratory manner rather than the pencil/worksheet manner the children can range in ages as long as there are staff able to find something for them to do when they "leave" the preschool task.

    I do miss my years as a tradional preschool teacher, but my giant mixed age is fun in different ways.
     
  5. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    Nov 8, 2008

    So far we have not seen a change in our enrollment, but we enroll on a school year basis and parents sign contracts for the entire school year.

    We are now starting to go through enrollment for the 09-10 school year and it will be interesting to see if that is affected by the current economy.
     
  6. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Nov 8, 2008

    The child care center I left a year ago consistently had 20 kids in the pre-school room, and 2-5 kids on a wait list. They've been at 13 kids since September. They have three kids coming in the next month, but that still leaves them 4 shy of being full which had always been typical.
     
  7. keep_smiling

    keep_smiling Rookie

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    Nov 8, 2008

    2 years ago I had 13 kids in my 3 year old program and 10 in my 4-5 year old program. Last year I had 7 in my 3 program and 10 in my 4-5 year old program. This year... 7 in my 3 year old program and 5 in my 4-5 program. The director/owner raised the rates $1.00/hr and increased the annual fee in Aug. By September, 7 kids pulled out before class could start because of $$$$. I dont do the finances, but wouldnt the 7 kids paying $1.00 less per hour be better than no kids? The infant and toddler rooms are low too. The phone never rings for applications for new children. Kind worried about the future of my job.
     
  8. flbjs

    flbjs New Member

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    Nov 8, 2008

    I am a director in a church based preschool in So. FL and there is a definate decline from last year in enrollment. We are at a break even point this year, first time in 20 years!! In FL there is also VPK (Voluntary preK which is state funded and it is free), so that has had a drastic impact on our Prek programs. Hoping not to go to a state program if we don't have to for $$ sake. GUess alot of us are in the same boat. BJ
     
  9. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Nov 9, 2008

    I am very interested in this and the effect on enrollment. I started a new thread to not hijack.
     
  10. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Our enrollement has been effected but in a different kind of way I think-- it's the roll over. We have kids leaving because parents can't afford it or have lost jobs, but we have new ones starting because parents that could have one stay at home have had to go to work or parents have taken on a second job and work hours are overlapping so no one can be home, we have more parents getting tuition assistance as well. We are also seeing some parents bringng theri children in because the cost of child care has risen and they wan tto have their child in the place they feel gives the most for the money, and so they wnt them getting academics . We are open 6 am to 6pm and generally ahve a 10 hour rule--which we honestly did not have to even think about a year ago as almost no one had their child at school that long, but parents are working more hours or having to take jobs with longer commutes. So our numbers are doing okay but the demograhics are changing. I also see ab ig differnce in lunch box contents.
     
  11. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Nov 10, 2008

    sarzacsmom-i think lunchboxes are good bellweather for family states. What is happening there?
     
  12. Hannah's Place

    Hannah's Place Rookie

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    Nov 11, 2008

    While I don't have much to gadge right now, I can tell you that I've seen less in lunches then last year. There just isn't enough to go around anymore.
    Also, diapers are not as readily given by parents. Sounds, and is, gross, but I think they are changing kids less and less often. I myself go on the 2 hr. mark unless needed earlier. I've had to suppliment diapers to cover parents when needed, but now I can't do that, either.
    I've even seen a parent try to talk to her not quite 2 yr. old to begin potty training.
     
  13. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Nov 11, 2008

    I am director of a church sponsored child care center. Out enrollment is down. The Board wants to continue. But, they asked me to work in the classroom 6 hours per day--so I am out of here. I am a manager, not a child care provider. I put my time in for over 25 years in the classroom, and am not too old to jump up and down, climb fences, and run after trikes.

    Don't know what I will do, but I know I will enjoy it.
     
  14. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Nov 11, 2008

    As far as lunchboxes go, I am seeing less in them in general, and especially less fresh fruit and healthier choices. parents who used to put in sevearl choices are now only putting in a few. I have one chidl who comes with carrots and cucumbers sliced up nwo (a good ehalthy choice of course) that used to have two or three items of fresh fruit every day. Also seeing more sandwiches and dinner leftovers than storebought heat ups (chef boy r dee etc). We have pizza day every friday and parents can buy their child 1 or 2 slices of pizza and apple juice, now I see parents choosing to pass when they would always get it. Lets face it it si mores costly to provide the fresh fruits and healthier choices and I am seeing less healthy choices than in the past. another thing I am seeing is more recycling rf containers etc. Instead of jucie boxes, i am getting kids with bottles of water and thenseeing the empty bottle refilled with wither water or juice or milk. We aer not supposed tolet them drink kool aid etc but I can't always tellw hat is in the bottle and I kind of figure if the parent is packing a lucnh that is fairly healthy and doing the best they can , a little kool aid isn't going to kill them. i have also seen a big difference in our fundraisers this year--- not much coming in form them as people are tightening their belts.
     
  15. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Nov 11, 2008

    Our enrollment began dropping when the Public schools started offering Pre-K. It's a half day program so I have children coming and going. I have a total of 12 enrolled, which is close to the limit of 13 for my age group. I do hear talks of parent lay offs at their jobs, so expect things could change any time. It's a bit unsettling because the phone is not ringing off the wall like it did years ago.
     
  16. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Nov 11, 2008

    I hope that you stay in contact w/us here. I enjoy comparing notes and ideas with you blue!!
     
  17. mrs27

    mrs27 Rookie

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    Nov 12, 2008

    Enrollment is down for us too, primarily 3 year olds. We have gone from about 37 kids total 2 years ago to 20 total this year. It is a huge difference and has really affected us.
     
  18. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Nov 12, 2008

    And, in my school, enrollment is waaay up. Until this year, we had two sections of kindergarten, with about 20 kids in each. This year, we had such an upsurge in enrollment that we have 4 sections with 25 each.

    I think a lot of parent who had traditionally done private schooling just can't afford it, or have decided to be less liberal in their spending, and are choosing public school.
    Kim
     
  19. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Nov 12, 2008

    And, just to clarify, are you are in a pre school in public school room that doesn't require free and reduced lunch status? Is that right? Just wondering.
     
  20. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Nov 12, 2008

    I teach PreK within this public school. Our target audience is "at-risk" kids. In our state, that definition includes poverty level kids, ESL kids, and kids with health/medical/family situations that include things like premature birth, delayed speech, low birth weight, chronic medical conditions, etc. Because this program isn't offered in every elementary school, we take kids from any elementary school in the district if they meet any of the above criteria, just for the PreK program. They have to return to their home schools for K. So, no we don't require free/reduced lunch status, but it is one of many factors that will qualify a child to be a part of the preschool program.

    However, the community that the school draws from is very diverse. It includes public housing, a largely immigrant area, and a couple of neighborhoods that are made up of waterfront mansions worth much more than a million dollars. We have about 30% poverty, about 30% ESL (some of that overlaps with the poverty) and about 35% minority. My thinking is that it's the upper-income families who have inundated our Kindergartens this year due to the economy. The lower income families have pretty much always come to our school, because they lack the other choices that the upper-income families have traditionally had. So, our enrollment of middle to upper class kids has skyrocketed, especially in the lower grades...in the upper elementary grades, the parents aren't willing to make that change with a kid who has been in a private school setting for 5 or more years...unless it becomes a financial situation where they just have no choice.
    Kim
     

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