Ardrey Kell High — the Ballantyne/Blakeney area school that opened only a decade ago — has just claimed the mantle of Charlotte’s largest public school.
With 3,178 students, according to new Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools data, it is perhaps the largest in the state.
The figure also represents a 6 percent increase in enrollment in an era where CMS growth is nearly flat.
How did this happen? Two major factors: With an A rating from the state and an affluent student population, Ardrey Kell is the most desirable high school among Charlotte newcomers.
And there’s plenty of new housing developments for them to move to. The Ballantyne/Blakeney area is awash in construction, with more land still available. The south Charlotte real estate market is booming.
Charlotte for the first time has three schools topping 3,000 students.
Myers Park High is now the second-largest, with 3,156 students. That’s a 5 percent increase from last year. Myers Park is also a highly sought after neighborhood and school district and experiencing a resurgence in infill development.
South Mecklenburg High had been the largest school and only 3,000-plus campus. It’s now No. 3, with 3,106 students, about 2 percent more than last year.
The three mega-schools illustrate why the school bond up for a vote in November is so important.
One of the top projects is a $110 million new high school that would relieve Ardrey Kell, Myers Park and South Mecklenburg.