DPS Board Adopts Reform Plan in Second Big, Exciting Local Meeting This Week

This is not the week for your average, run-of-the-mill, humdrum school board meeting. Not in Colorado, not in the Denver metro area. I already highlighted the heavy attendance at Douglas County’s Tuesday public testimony on their School Choice Task Force proposals and all the attention generated from it.

Then there was last night in the Denver Public Schools, as a divided Board of Education was set to weigh a controversial turnaround reform proposal affecting the Far Northeast (FNE) part of the city. According to Jeremy Meyer in the Denver Post, the Board stayed up well past my bedtime to approve the proposal on a 4-3 vote.

The newly-approved proposal includes a lot of features — which are well broken down in Nancy Mitchell’s Ed News Colorado story. One piece is an expansion of the successful Denver School of Science and Technology program using shared space in the Cole Arts and Science Academy innovation school. My Education Policy Center friends alerted you to this possible development back in March on an iVoices podcast with Cole principal Julie Murgel.

In its story, Ed News Colorado also published a 4-minute highlight video from the Denver school board meeting, a more balanced presentation than the 5-minute video from Douglas County two days ago. Was this proposal the right path for Denver’s school reformers to pursue? Given the low performance of the FNE schools being turned over and some strategies included in the plan, there is at least some real hope of success. Stay tuned.