OXFORD – SAD 17 has seen a nearly 50-pupil drop in its enrollment from last year.

According to figures released at the Board of Directors meeting Tuesday night, the total Oxford Hills School District enrollment is 3,511, a loss of 48 students from 2006. The numbers were presented to the Board of Directors as a prelude to the more exact enrollment figures that will be sent to the Department of Education on Oct. 1.

“It has to do with the economy. It has to do with a lot of things,” said Superintendent Mark Eastman of the enrollment figures that showed a 13-student drop in Harrison Elementary School, a 28-student loss at the middle school and a 21-student drop at Oxford Elementary School. Eastman said that typically Oxford has seen a lot of “back-and-forth” movement of students from the Lewiston area.

Harrison Elementary School lost one of its two fourth-grade classes because of reduced enrollment. Hebron Station Elementary has the lowest enrollment of an elementary school with 122 students.

The only other school to see a drop in numbers was Paris Elementary School that lost 11 students, bringing that school’s enrollment to 364.

Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School picked up 15 students for a total enrollment of 1,186 while Otisfield picked up two; Rowe Elementary School in Norway six; West Paris, six and Waterford two additional students. Rowe has the highest elementary enrollment with 419 students.

Eastman said that a number of requests for transfers, which are typically done for parents who find it more convenient to enroll their child at a school in a town they work in or for other reasons, were not approved in order to keep class sizes down across the district.

Other school districts in the area are also seeing some movement in student population.

At SAD 39, which encompasses Buckfield, Sumner and Hartford, Buckfield Junior-Senior High School enrolled 295 students, an increase of nine students from June when enrollment stood at 286 students, said administrative assistant Christie Harris. Of that number, 109 students attend the middle school.

Harris said that two middle school teaching positions were created to address large class sizes in both grades.

The Hartford Sumner Elementary School has an enrollment this September of 346, up from 336 in June.

SAD 44 in the Bethel area will release its student enrollment figures Friday, school officials said.

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