Green Forest schools see steady trend of growth
By Kelby Newcomb
When Tyson Foods announced plans for a new 200,000-square-foot facility in Green Forest, the Green Forest School District began preparing for the possibility of rising enrollment numbers.
So far, said Superintendent Matt Summers, the growth at the district has been pretty steady.
According to the district’s enrollment reports, the district had a total enrollment of 1,258 students in October 2012. By October 2015, the numbers had dropped slightly to an enrollment of 1,220.
Over the past two years, the district’s enrollment has begun to increase, jumping to 1,313 students in October 2016 and 1,319 in October 2017.
While a lot of the city’s growth does come from Tyson Foods and its recent expansion, Summers said new jobs in the city don’t necessarily mean more people will move into the area.
“When you have the job and the housing to go with it, that’s when you see school enrollment go up,” he said.
Summers said he believes there is still a wave of growth coming for the district.
“I still think there is going to be more growth because if you look at our city there is new housing going in, both rental and purchase,” he said. “There’s going to be another apartment complex with approximately 36 units coming. There’s a lot of growth in that market, and that’s where you see the growth in the schools.”