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.
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.
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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.