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Gwinnett Schools: Still growing, but slowing | Families

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Gwinnett Schools: Still growing, but slowing
Families, Schools
Gwinnett Schools: Still growing, but slowing

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga.-- One girl in Gwinnett County could be overheard whispering the concerns of her fellow students: "Mom, this is sooo embarrassing."

Just like those new backpacks and shiny shoes; back-to-school kisses, hugs, and waves were seen all over Metro Atlanta Monday.

"Be yourself!" Bobbie Spellman called after her children as they boarded a school bus. Her family has been in Gwinnett County two years.

"Since we've been here, we've seen a large increase," she said.

Gwinnett is still growing, but not like it was.

"Our growth is slowing significantly," Gwinnett County Schools spokesman Jorge Quintana said. "We used to grow by 7,000 new students a year. This year, we're growing by 1700 new students."

Gwinnett is expecting 162,000 students in the 2011-2012 year.

Starting in 2007, as the housing market slowed, the flood of new students slowed to a steady stream. That slower growth means there's just one new school building in Gwinnett this year: Moore Middle School.

Sixth grader Edin Kacevic was transferred to Moore from nearby Lawrencville Middle School. "It's bigger than the other school," he said. "It's new, so it's kind of different."

The school is expected to reach its 1500 student capacity within the next few years. Other new schools and expansions are in the works. Gwinnett County is still catching up from its population boom.

But on the first day at Moore Middle School, there's something rare in Gwinnett County Schools: room to grow.

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