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List of DPS schools recommended for closure cut in half

DPS said the new list "prioritizes five schools that have received the largest budget assistance."

DENVER — Denver Public Schools' superintendent is now recommending the district close five elementary and middle schools -- half the number the district had previously proposed for closure.

On Oct. 25, the district said it would recommend to the Denver Public Schools Board that 10 schools be closed for the 2023-2024 school year. The goal was to make up for a budget shortfall caused by declining enrollment.

On Thursday, the district said they've modified that proposal to suggest closing these five schools: 

  • Denver Discovery School in Central Park
  • Schmitt Elementary in Ruby Hill
  • Fairview Elementary in Sun Valley
  • International Academy of Denver at Harrington in Clayton
  • Math Science Leadership Academy in Athmar Park

DPS said the new list "prioritizes five schools that have received the largest budget assistance." The district said those five schools account for more than two-thirds of the nearly $5 million that DPS provides to subsidize the original list of 10 schools.

"DPS allocates $7.5 million dollars annually to subsidize small schools," Superintendent Dr. Alex Marrero said in a letter to the DPS community. "Five million of those dollars support the 10 small schools included in the recommendation. This means we take $5 million each year from other DPS schools, students and programs to subsidize these small schools."

The new proposal will be presented to the DPS board for a vote Nov. 17. A public comment session will be held at 4:30 p.m. Monday.

DPS spokesperson Scott Pribble said the other five schools on the original list could still be considered for closure in the future, but they won't be included in next week's vote. Pribble said the district will continue to engage the communities surrounding those schools.

From Oct. 25: DPS releases list of 10 schools recommended for closure

RELATED: Latino education leader reacts to proposed DPS school closures

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