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CPS Enrollment Continues to Plummet: ‘I would have Never Imagined Seeing this Steep of a Decline’

Chicago Public Schools enrollment has dropped again, this time to 330,411 students, about 10,000 fewer kids than last year, according to numbers the district released Wednesday.

“When I was in CPS my first year, in 2003, we were just under 440,000 students. Even then I was seeing declines of about 3,000 students or so. I would have never imagined seeing this steep of a decline,” new CPS CEO Pedro Martinez told reporters.

“For me, it’s not just looking at what’s happening today, but what’s going to happen over the next five years.”

Enrollment is down 3% compared to the 340,658 students counted in the last school year — when the COVID-19 pandemic was well underway — and 7% versus the 355,156 students in the 2019-20 year. The figures cover more than 600 schools, which include district-run, charter and contract schools.

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