We were having a conversation recently about the time back in 1992 when the Colonial School District’s School Board voted to close Conshohocken Elementary. The town fought to keep it open and the school never closed.
While reading articles about the vote to close the school, there were numbers that we found interesting and we asked the school district to provide the numbers as they stand today so we could compare them. Below we go through each one:
People always get mad at me when I say there are very few children in Conshohocken. In 1992, the enrollment at Conshohocken Elementary was 300. Today it is 175, a 42% reduction (if we did the math right).
In 1992, the district reported that Conshohocken Elementary had the lowest enrollment of its four elementary schools and there weren’t enough children to justify keeping all four elementary schools open.
Free Lunch Program
In 1992, 18.9% of the students at Conshohocken Elementary participated in the government-supported free-lunch program. That was five times that at Whitemarsh Elementary.
Today, Conshohocken Elementary has 40.3% students who are on Free or Reduced Lunch programs. The district-wide percentage is 22%.
Special/Gifted Education Programs
In 1992, figures showed that Conshohocken students scored lowest on standardized achievement tests and had the highest percentage of referrals to the district’s special-education program and the lowest percentage of referrals to its gifted program.
Today 14.3% of Conshohocken Elementary students are in the special education program. Ridge Park Elementary has the highest percentage today at 17.5% percent in the special education program. Whitemarsh Elementary has 10.8% in the special education program.
Regarding the gifted program, today 0.5% of Conshohocken Elementary students have gifted Individual Education Programs (IEPs). At Ridge Park the number is 1.3% and 3.6% at Whitemarsh Elementary.
Please note that the numbers don’t perfectly line-up and aren’t complete. For example, the rules about the free lunch program have changed over the years, so it is not a true apples to apples comparison.
If you want to go back and read the articles from 1992, we have linked to a few below:
April 30, 1992 – The Road to Conshohocken School Closing
July 2, 1992 – School’s Out – But Is It Forever
July 5, 1992 – School Closing Reversed