The evidence against P.S. 1 Charter School, the subject of this week's feature, "P.S. 1 Didn't Make the Grade, But Can Anything Replace Denver's Longest-running Charter School?," is harsh. Several reports from Denver Public Schools officials and the Colorado Department of Education detail what they see as the school's problems: low test scores and low expectations.
They also highlight its strengths: "exemplary" relationships between staff and students, and students who say they're learning more at P.S. 1, and showing up more often, than they did at their old schools.
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But the positives weren't enough to outweigh the negatives.
In late November, the DPS school board voted to shutter P.S. 1 in 2011 as part of a district-wide initiative to close low-performing schools. Because the school serves a unique population of students, many of whom have special-education needs and were not successful at traditional DPS schools, the district hopes to open a new school to take its place -- an expectation that many consider to be a tall order.
Click here to read more about DPS's plans for its six lowest-performing schools; here to read an in-depth assessment of P.S. 1 by the state department of education; and here to read about Colorado's bid to win $60 to $175 million in federal school reform money, which experts say will be bolstered by districts shutting down under-performing schools like P.S. 1.