The Denver school district is proposing to close 10 campuses across the city as early as next year as it deals with declining enrollment.
The Denver Post reports that the announcement had been anticipated by families who feared their children’s school could be on the chopping block.
“We know that these decisions are not easy for our community, but they are necessary for our scholars,” Superintendent Alex Marrero said. “These recommendations will not only help right-size our school district, they will allow our scholars access to more well-rounded educational experiences and will also put the school district in a position to better address our staffing needs across the district.”
The district’s proposal calls for shuttering eight elementary schools, one K-8 school and one middle school.
District administrators will present the plan to the school board on Nov. 3. The board is scheduled on Nov. 17 to vote on whether to shutter the schools.
The district is recommending that these schools close for the 2023-24 academic year:
- Columbian Elementary
- Palmer Elementary
- Mathematics and Science Leadership Academy
- Schmitt Elementary
- Eagleton Elementary
- Fairview Elementary
- Colfax Elementary,
- International Academy of Denver at Harrington
- Denver Discovery School
- Whittier K-8
Denver is Colorado's largest school district. Next month, the school board in the Jefferson County district, the state’s second largest, will vote on whether to close 16 elementary schools.
In the Denver district, enrollment peaked in 2019 and between the fall of that year and the fall of 2021, the district lost more than 3,600 students. Its total enrollment sits at just more than 90,000, according to the district.
And in the past five years, enrollment in the district’s elementary and middle schools has plunged by more than 6,000 students. Denver has said it expects enrollment to continue to decline by another 3,000 or so elementary and middle school students in the next four years.