After the state ordered Denver Public Schools to reconsider a charter school centering Black students and culture, the school board Thursday approved the school to open next fall.
But the approval comes with conditions, including that 5280 Freedom School must fill all of its open seats in its first year. The school plans to open with 52 students in kindergarten and first grade, and add grades each year up to fifth grade.
Denver schools are funded per pupil, and other new charter schools have had to delay opening because they didn’t enroll enough students. Existing charter schools have closed because their enrollment declined, and the district is considering closing some of its own schools due to low student counts.
The school board initially rejected the 5280 Freedom School for fear it would struggle to attract enough students to be financially viable.
The 5280 Freedom School appealed the board’s denial. Last month, the State Board of Education ordered Denver to reconsider its decision. State Board members said it was unfair to assume that 5280 Freedom School would face the same challenges as other charters.
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