Officials Disagree on ND Student Trend

August 22, 2011 | Valley News Live |  Link to article

FARGO, N.D. (AP) - A recent study by a national think tank predicts fewer students wandering the halls of North Dakota's high schools over the next decade. But the state's top education official disagrees.

The Forum newspaper reports ( that the Washington-based Center for Law and Social Policy projects the number of high school graduates in North Dakota to drop more than 15% by 2020. The center analyzed the most recent number of high school graduates in the state and the number of students behind them to make its projection.

State School Superintendent Wayne Sanstead says the center's numbers are "far out." He says the high school-age population will grow because of the oil boom in western North Dakota. His department predicts an increase of up to 1,400 students by 2014.

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