Why Are There So Many Freshmen?

Nina Burik You’ve probably noticed the untraditionally large class of freshmen in the halls this year. Wondering why so many ninth graders were accepted to Latin? Here’s what you should know. Historically, Latin’s class sizes have consisted of about 120 students. However, this year’s freshman class is a whopping 135 students — a trend that could potentially change the dynamics of the whole upper school. To understand this shift, one must understand the yield: the percentage of students accepted who choose to come to Latin. In previous years, Latin has accepted a good deal of students in order to “cushion itself,” Ms. Salzman, who works in admissions, said. This means that fewer students had accepted Latin’s offer in past years, making a yield of anywhere from 55% to 68% . Expecting approximately the same yield, the admissions office admitted many applicants. The only difference between this freshman class and others: the yield rate. This year’s yield rate was a shocking 83%, a number that came as a surprise to many. Many different explanations contribute to Latin’s heightened popularity, whether it was Latin’s improved facilities (the new learning commons), or their advanced athletics program. Although Ms. Salzman did mention an increase of events thrown for perspective families, she said it was a minor adjustment. Will this trend continue? The answer is yes and no. One should definitely anticipate extreme interest in Latin — its popularity will not falter. However, with a greater understanding of Latin’s yield, class sizes will be kept more consistent with its previous numbers. “The class size may go from traditionally 120 students per class, to 125 students,” Ms. Salzman said. That is, Latin will grow, but only slightly. A key point Ms. Salzman referenced was the significance of students within each academic class. She said, “we promised a small number of students in each class,” a promise Latin intends to keep. Rather than having more kids in each class, one can expect more classes, with a consistently small amount of kids in each. In other words, the amount of students in your classes will not be modified, there will simply be more classes. The freshman bounty has the potential to improve sports teams and introduce more diversity at Latin, but its size is not projected to change any other aspect of life at Latin majorly, let alone negatively. “The freshman class is really great,” Ms. Salzman said. With such a large grade, too, there are students from over thirty different schools in the class of 2022. This means there are kids from all different backgrounds, which is another benefit from such a vast freshman class: there are that many more new Romans to get to know.]]>