Information | Communication | Transparency | Accountability

A Movement By Citizens  Demanding Transparency, Accountability, and Community Engagement for school districts in the State of Illinois.

Building A Better District is a taxpayer-led movement and is not affiliated with, nor endorsed by, the State or Regional Board of Education, any individual school district, or administration/Board of Education. 

The district recently posted some growth metrics comparing D301 to surrounding area districts in terms of growth.  The district looked at the last 6 years of growth during which time historic low interest rates and the COVID-19 pandemic drove a strong housing market.  By mid-2022, interest rates had increased to almost 8% along with high home prices and inflation, cooling the housing market and new housing construction significantly.

To really see how growth is moving in our district, we have to look at the most recent 2 to 3 years which would show growth based upon the current market conditions as the market conditions present pre-pandemic no longer apply.

Market Conditions Distort 6-Year Growth Chart 

The district posted this graphic on their website to show growth based on the past 6 years.  As you can see, it shows the growth in our district at 15% when you compare our enrollment in 2018 to our enrollment in 2023 (last school year).

SOURCE: Central 301 Referendum Website

Growth During Current Market Show Different Numbers

When we look at enrollment in all the same districts for the school years ending 2022 and 2023, we see a different picture.  While our district IS growing, the rate of growth is much smaller than 15%. Additionally, CUDS300 and West Aurora 129 has had some minor increase in enrollment.

The more telling metric is our district's growth rate over the last three years.  Year-over-year, our district growth is sitting at 1.6%, down from 2.4% the year prior.  The impact of inflation is clearly shown in our slow down. We gained 153 students between 2021/2022 and 2022/2023.  So far for 2023/2024 we've gained just 75 students, putting enrollment down 51% year over year.

Closed Home Sales Show Downturn Overall in Our District

Closed Home Sales between 1/1/23 and 12/31/23 compared to pre-pandemic sales show how growth has been impacted by current market conditions (2020 and 2021 are excluded due to the anomaly in sales caused by historic low interest rates and remote worker relocation mobility).

Kane County Data Confirms Downturn in New Home Construction

Kane County's 2023 EAV Assessment Report shows EAV in New Construction down 21.8% from 2022's EAV.  This confirms what we have seen out of our real estate market contacts and the recent reporting of mortgage company layoffs due to plummeting mortgage applications.  The housing market continues to cool down and we will not be seeing aggressive growth anytime soon.

The Pandemic Effect

Any enrollment forecast or growth analysis that includes the years of 2020-2022 is going to show statistically significant anomalies due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdowns, and historically low interest rates that will not be returning.  An FAQ posted to the district asked if they've considered the impact of declining population or declining enrollment and the district pointed to an alleged 7.3% growth between the 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 school years.  This figure is unreliable and not a true representation of "growth" due to the impact of the pandemic on school enrollment.  Take a look at our year-by-year analysis that shows the fallacy of believing we had a 7.3% growth rate driven by new families moving into the district.

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We are a local group dedicated to cultivating an empowered and engaged community of parents and taxpayers to build an environment of transparency, accountability, and communication within Central Community Unified District 301 (D301), representing the unified voice of the people for a successful and sustainable future.


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Building A Better District is a volunteer community group advocating for transparency, honesty, accountability, and community engagement from Central CUSD 301 in Burlington, IL.

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