Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) – The enrollment bulge in Rochester schools is growing.

When the 2019-2020 school year begins Tuesday, the student headcount in the Rochester Public Schools system will be an estimated 18,337 (as of last Friday).

Enrollment topped 18,000 (18,162) for the first time in the 2018-2019 school year. And this year's number could exceed 18.400 when the enrollment figure is finalized in October.

RPS spokeswoman Heather Nessler says “ We expect more students to register even into next week but we also expect some students that are registered to have dropped and moved away. It’s always very fluid this time of year. “

An enrollment projection issued by RPS earlier this year indicated the number could approach 19,000 by the fall of 2023.