By Carol Roberts, Publisher
If you have a child in one of these DPS schools, the first score you looked for was likely your own child or grandchild’s school. Lacking any of those you probably looked first at the closest school. Humans are wired to instinctively care for their own family and “tribe”—those closest to us.
We printed demographic information about each school along with the School Performance Framework (SPF) scores in hopes that after checking on the education health of your immediate tribe, you will look more closely at the education health of your broader tribe—Northeast Denver. (And, as it happens, Northeast Denver is a pretty good representation of the country.)
These schools aren’t listed alphabetically or by grade level. They are sorted according to percent of students who get Free or Reduced Lunch. NE Denver’s education health report has the same problem that plagues the country. With few exceptions (and DSST is the exception here), the higher performing schools are the ones with a greater number of affluent students.
Whether you agree or disagree with the specifics of DPS’s SPF criteria, we can all agree our NE Denver community, our state and our nation would be healthier for all of us if all children succeed academically. Kids from more affluent families start school with life experiences that give them an academic head start—and then affluent parents bring their fiscal and social capital to their kids’ schools, further widening the opportunity and academic gaps between kids at more and less affluent schools.
Mixing up the zip codes, providing schools with additional resources, sharing resources among schools, respecting and appreciating cultural differences—these, and more, are all pieces that can improve education health. As individuals, families, schools and neighborhoods in NE Denver, let’s look beyond our immediate tribes and be part of improving the education health of this slightly larger tribe we all belong to.
For information about the SPF ratings visit https://spf.dpsk12.org/en/spf-ratings/