Kanning: Summit County parents should consider neighborhood schools
February 12, 2014
Consider sending your child to a neighborhood school
As the deadline for open enrollment nears, I would like to ask parents who are considering sending their kids to a school other than their neighborhood school to reconsider this choice. In particular, I'm talking to the families who choose schools other than Silverthorne Elementary for what seem to be issues of class and race. Most of the families who move their kids are white families with incomes substantially larger than a significant percentage of SVE families. Full disclosure: I send my daughter to SVE. And I think that all SVE students would benefit if Silverthorne families stayed in Silverthorne.
There are many reasons to send your child to your community school: (1) your child acquires a sense of place and connection to your community, (2) your neighborhood school is a valuable civic asset, (3) it keeps people out of their cars by walking, biking and/or riding the school bus, (4) there is value for our kids to learn with and play with children who might be different from ourselves, and (5) every elementary school in this district has a great teaching staff who cares about your kids.
If these reasons aren't compelling enough, have a look at some of the school grades and rankings from Colorado School Grades: (grade/rank out of 1009) SVE B/179, DVE B/155, SCE C/547, FRE B/220, BRE B+/130 and UBE B-/313.
My point is not to chastise those who send their kids to other schools; many of these families are good friends of mine. I am just asking people to consider their home school first. Get involved in your child's school and education; if there's something you don't like about your school, first try to change it before moving on. All of our kids will end up at Summit Middle School together soon enough.