Letter: Mobilize against a Fraser charter school
To the Editor:
An open letter to East Grand School District parents in Granby, Grand Lake, and Hot Sulphur:
A group of people in Fraser is proposing a 6-12 grade charter school to be opened in Fraser for the 2017-2018 school year. This group may not be able to meet the Oct. 1 deadline to submit a charter school application this year, but I doubt they will stop trying. Parents of students at East Grand Middle School and Middle Park High School who live north of Red Dirt Hill, should mobilize now against this incredibly harmful and divisive proposal, that would literally take food out of the mouths of your children.
The recent Sky-Hi article says this Fraser group hopes for between 240-360 students. These students would no longer attend the middle and high schools in Granby, which would drop their enrollment, and consequently remove the approximately $7000 per pupil funding that the state gives to school districts in Colorado. Other critical questions that need to be asked are: Who benefits north of Tabernash, and who is harmed? Are public schools forced to allow charter school students to participate in sports or activities they do not offer? Would they try to limit enrollment and make it exclusive? How can they make an academic or college prep argument vs. the current academic standing of our public high school? How would it negatively impact course offerings, sports, and academic services at our middle and high schools? Would EGSD be expected to provide busing for them, and if so, would Granby, Grand Lake, and Hot Sulphur parents foot the bill for that too?
I strongly urge parents in the north and west end of East Grand to attend the District Accountability meetings this year to research the harmful effects another charter school will have on our small district with limited resources. I also urge the Sky-Hi News and anyone concerned with their child’s education to look into charter school laws and regulations, the application process, and how much private charter school companies profit from taxpayer dollars.
Finally, do not rest, do not relax, and do not let a small group of self-interested people from Fraser tear apart a public middle school and high school that consistently score above the state average on all standardized tests, graduate a high percentage of their students, and currently offer a large variety of classes and sports in a small district.
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