Total public and private elementary and secondary school enrollment reached a record 55 million in fall 2006, representing a 12 percent increase since fall 1993. Between 2006, the last year of actual public school data, and 2018, a further increase of 8 percent is expected, with increases projected in public schools and decreases projected in private schools. Increases in public school enrollment are expected in the Midwest, South, and West, and a decrease is expected in the Northeast.
The projected changes in enrollment reflect factors such as internal migration, legal and illegal immigration, the relatively high level of births in the 1990s and 2000s, and resultant changes in the population (reference figure 1), rather than changes in enrollment rates.
The projections do not assume changes in policies or attitudes that may affect enrollment levels. For example, they do not Account for changing state and local policies on prekindergarten and kindergarten programs. Continued expansion of these programs could lead to higher enrollments at the elementary school level. Projections also exclude the number of students who are homeschooled because national data are available for only a limited time period.