Nearly three weeks after Denver Public Schools announced plans to close multiple schools, the district is now holding its only public comment meeting on the decision.
Fairview parent Summer Patterson is one of dozens of parents who have registered to speak at Monday’s meeting.
“They only think about money and numbers, and that’s wrong,” Patterson said. “They don’t really think about raising these kids and what they’re going through.”
The district recently reduced its list of ten schools to five, butlisting. A DPS spokesperson said closing schools would save the district millions of dollars, enough to hire a few dozen more teachers.
“I want them to know how much of a family this community is. Like, everyone knows everyone here, all the kids know each other,” she said. “You can’t take that away from these kids.”
Milo Marquez, president of the Latino Education Coalition, told CBS News Colorado that the consolidation list continues to disproportionately affect Latino families.
“Our marginalized communities, our Latinos who live in those communities, face different challenges than other groups, other communities. Our families are more than likely to receive multilingual education in the classrooms,” Marquez said. . “We also know that a lot of our community members don’t have transportation.”
Marquez is now calling on the board to put a pause on all closings, consolidations and unifications.
“What this will allow us to do is work with these families to make sure that DPS and the administration really have through this process and how they are going to meet the needs of this community that is going to be affected by these closures,” he said. said.
Patterson hopes that any parents and community members unhappy with the decision will speak up before it’s too late.
“It’s about the kids, not the numbers, so don’t be afraid to speak up, don’t be afraid,” Patterson said.
Registration for public comment on the school closures ended Thursday, but the community can still attend the public meeting virtually or in person. For more information on this, you can visit: https://board.dpsk12.org/meeting/#public