Nine Schools to be Added to Sandoval Campus by 2025

paul-sandoval-campusLast week, DPS held a meeting at Northfield High School on the Sandoval Campus to discuss the future of the property with area parents. Essentially, DPS was announcing its plans to build several more schools on the property within the next 10 years. Many Stapleton residents had believed Northfield High School was going to be the first new comprehensive high school in Denver in 35 years. “We have so many kids in Stapleton, it makes sense to have a dedicated, comprehensive high school for the community,” said concerned resident Kyle Peterson. “Most people dreamed of their kids going to one high school in our community, but according to DPS, that was never going to be the case. I think it’s going to be difficult to build pride in our schools located there. Or are we just supposed to have campus pride.” Resident Jessica Lewis agrees. “I don’t understand where this is coming from,” said Lewis. “I feel like there was a really big bait switch. Bigger than what I even pulled on my husband. When I voted for the bond, and any support I had for the school, was for Northfield High. Not for a never-ending campus of randomly thrown together schools with kids of different ages and needs.”

DPS Superintendent Tom Boasberg explained to everyone how they need to pay attention to the fine print. “The bond proposal never said the additional seats would go to Northfield High School,” said Boasberg. “The bond proposal stated the money would pay for additional seats on the Paul Sandoval Campus. It doesn’t say ‘Northfield High School.’ It never said ‘Northfield High School.’ Read the fine print, dummies. Game. Set. Match. I guess this meeting is over?” It wasn’t. Parents continued to express their displeasure of the DPS plan to integrate several schools onto the campus over the next decade. “This is going to be a mess,” said concerned resident Jim Harves. “Kids of all ages running around, athletic facilities overwhelmed, social chaos with competing schools. I know this is being done in other areas, but to this extent?”

Colocation and campus sharing are indeed being done in other districts. In fact, almost 15% of DPS schools utilize this money-saving strategy. “Buildings and land are expensive,” explained Boasberg in a demeaning manner. “This way, we can put resources back into the students much more easily instead of putting money into the bricks and mortar. We can’t pretend money isn’t an issue, because it is. Now that other states and cities are going to start getting our precious weed taxes, we need to be thinking ahead.” Chris Streff isn’t sold on the idea of the multiple school campus, but understands it could work. “I’m not saying it could never work,” said Streff. “I’m questioning the timing of the announcement. Northfield High School is just starting to get its legs, and instead of putting resources behind continuing to build a stronger and better school, we hamstring the school by letting them know they’re getting company. A lot of company.” The first elementary school to join the campus will be there by next year, followed by a high school, then a middle school, potentially another middle school, then an elementary school, then another high school, and potentially two more middle schools. “We expect to have a smooth transition throughout the integration process,” said Boasberg. “I’m just glad all these meetings and petty disagreements are all behind us, never to be spoken of again.”

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