Officials with the Bullitt County Public School System got a little good news last week.
The enrollment numbers continue to increase.
While growth means school facilities might get tight on space, it is better than the alternative.
Over the past 15 years, Bullitt County has seen a lot of growth, although the overall enrollment figures are not a lot greater than in the mid-1970s.
Over this period, the county has experienced a major expansion in its school facilities. Some has been needed to the age of the buildings; others have been required due to smaller class sizes and the inability to run double sessions.
Handling a larger district brings with it some challenges. Besides the vast number of facilities, there is always the growing number of employees and the growing challenges in the education field, many of which are mandated from those folks in Washington.
But there are positives to growth.
First, you are not having to lay off teachers and staff.
Second, there is the perception in the region that Bullitt County and its school system is the place to be despite some of the media attention that it draws.
Third, a growing district is better able to overcome some of the funding cutbacks and unfunded mandates that smaller systems may not be able to overcome.
The school board made some difficult decisions to redistrict boundaries for some schools a few years ago. Those decisions are now being validated as the balance in enrollment is much more evident today.
The bad thing is that we now have three high schools that are busting at the seams, instead of one or two.
Just as Hebron Middle concludes its major renovation project this fall, expect construction to begin on expanding the high schools once again.
It has only been a few years that the system added classrooms at Bullitt East and North Bullitt. With enrollment at both continuing to rise at an alarming rate, even more space will be needed. And Bullitt Central is due for a major renovation.
Despite the challenges imposed upon schools in Kentucky and across the nation, it should be a happy time in Bullitt County. The district is moving forward with its academic goals and it is a system where there is no expectation that enrollment will decrease.
The only goal now is to have a great school year as new academic standards are entering the classroom. It will be another challenging year.