BURLINGTON – Most people knew enrollment at the Fox Hill Elementary School was a problem, but the classroom capacity figures in the first-grade sector are worse than expected.

School Supt. Dr. Eric Conti recently informed the School Committee that the average first-grade classroom at Fox Hill is 22-23 students, which is “unacceptable” by the School Committee’s standards. There are a total of 91 first-grade students at Fox Hill. This is a huge number compared to the 31 first-grade students at Pine Glen Elementary School, which is averaging 10-11 students per class.

Adjustments to the first-grade classroom structure at both schools is likely.

“We are more than likely going to have to move one first-grade section from Pine Glen to Fox Hill to balance that,” advised Dr. Conti. “We are trying to find a classroom to convert at Fox Hill.”

He further elaborated on worries regarding that first grade enrollment figure progressing and potentially inflating subsequent grades in the years to come.

“This news feeds into the narrative of why we are building a new Fox Hill,” Dr. Conti pointed out.

There is good news regarding the new Fox Hill Elementary School project. The good is that the Massachusetts School Building Authority is going to move forward and fund a portion of the massive undertaking, but the bad is the school likely won’t be built and ready for another five years.

“I will have to watch things closely with the kindergarden enrollment, as well,” Dr. Conti mentioned. “I will keep [the School Committee] appraised as we go, but we are not going to have answers by the end of June.”

There was a brief mention about the possibility of having to redistrict the elementary schools, if the enrollment numbers continue to balloon, because, as Dr. Conti said, “The district only has so many classrooms.”

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