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Clay County schools report enrollment increase

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Updated: 8/19/2013 9:00 pm
CLAY COUNTY, Fla. -- Clay County schools are reporting higher than expected enrollment numbers with about 435 more students showing up for class this year.

Clay County school leaders credit the spike in the roll call to opening up their schools to out-of-county students.

Deputy Superintendent Denise Adams said this year students from Putnam, Bradford, and Alachua counties were allowed to enroll in Clay County schools.

"I do know that helped us particularly in the Keystone area of the district. We have several counties that converge right there, so we opened that border up," said Adams.

The Oakleaf and Keystone Heights areas saw the most amount of growth.

Parents of students from out of county don't have to pay more in taxes.

According to Clay County Schools, that's because the state gives each county, funding based on the amount of students who attend school there regardless of where they live.

Adams said more students equal more state funding for the county which eventually means more teachers, something parent Randy West said is good news. 

"It's a representation that the economy is doing good and the school systems are probably good," said West.

Even with this increase, the county still has room for about 1,000 more students. For now, Adams said this is a welcome change after seeing a decline for at least the past four years. 

"We're very excited about that, I would say we're cautiously optimistic," said Adams.

In October, the school district will report their new enrollment numbers to the state, it is likely they will be receiving more funding for next year.
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