DPS fails to comply with federal mandate for English language learners (again)

Article CAIRCO note: 
This is your tax dollars hard at work-but not on behalf of your American English-speaking children and grandchildren.
Article author: 
Chris Halsne and Chris Koeberl
Article publisher: 
Fox 31
Article date: 
5 October 2016
Article category: 
Colorado News
Article Body: 

The Denver Public Schools district, under court order to provide extra English classes to tens of thousands of struggling students, can`t get it done.

In 2012, a federal judge gave DPS a fairly simple order: For students with low English language scores, sign them up for at least one, daily, 45-minute specialized class to help them catch up.

The FOX31 Problem Solvers wanted to check how the district was doing with that mandate. After months of fighting with DPS over internal tracking records, we can prove the district is still faltering, especially at high schools and public charter schools.

According to April 2016 internal school records provided to FOX31 Problem Solvers by a concerned insider, DPS identified approximately 27,140 (mostly Hispanic) students as having trouble meeting grade level requirements in English comprehension ...

The Civil Rights division of the U.S. Justice Department has repeatedly warned the district that every one of those struggling students needs to be enrolled in the English Language Acquisition Program (ELA) ...

FOX31 investigative reporter Chris Halsne caught up with Chief Schools Officer (and former DPS interim superintendent) Susana Cordova outside an ELA parent sign-up seminar to ask about the shortages.

Cordova said, “We have an obligation, not just a moral obligation, but a legal obligation to make sure they are receiving all the services they need. That`s something we take very seriously.”

Cordova told Halsne DPS still struggles to find the right number of bilingual teachers and multi-language tutors. The district tells us it deals with students who speak up to 180 different languages, although Spanish is by far the most prominent ...

Jimenez said the reason DPS can`t hire the right number of qualified ELD teachers or follow the court orders, in his opinion, is that the district chooses to spend tax money on other things ...

CAIRCO Research

Colorado spends $7 million educating migrants but can’t ask about legal status, April 16, 2016

Mass Immigration’s Impact on Public Education, September  15,  2016

DPS, Aurora add help for students new to U.S. schools, February 7, 2016

As pointed out ten years ago, mass deportation would pay for itself, May 29, 2016