Enrollment crunch hits Peralta Elementary

Hillcrest isn’t the only school with a serious supply-and-demand problem.


Christopher Waters, an active parent at Peralta Elementary School, says the popular Rockridge-area school (which temporarily moved last year after an arson fire) has just learned it is only allowed to enroll one incoming kindergarten class of 27 students. 

In an e-mail to district administrators and city officials, Waters wrote that this will mean half of new neighborhood families won’t be able to enroll their kids at Peralta. He said that younger siblings of current Peralta students who live outside the attendance boundary will have to go elsewhere as well.

“Let me be clear about what this means.  It means that that only about 50 percent of our new neighborhood families will be admitted, and there will be no space for out-of-neighborhood siblings of current Peralta students.  This is an absolute outrage.  Many of these Peralta neighbors have been involved at our school for two or even three years already — from the time their children had barely begun to walk.”

Ironically, Waters writes, the school was recently warned that its enrollment was too small. To avoid losing a teacher — or worse — the school admitted a third kindergarten class in the fall of 2006, a decision that is now contributing to the school’s space problem.

What do you think the district and the school should do?

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.