Feedback sought on D-11 plans

       After talking with school staff and principals through December, Colorado Springs School District 11 staff will seek public input on possible school closures and other changes in the district at six meetings in January.
       One of those will be at Coronado High School, 1590 W. Fillmore St., Thursday, Jan. 8 from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
       A format for the meetings had not been announced at press time, but the public school district's approach has been to accumulate staff and community feedback to aid development of a multiyear plan to make the district operate more efficiently. The idea is for the D-11 Board of Education to start reviewing the plan in February.
       Welling Clark, a Westside leader who is serving on a district-appointed staff/citizen steering committee for the information-gathering effort, urged parents and any others interested in D-11 schools to attend as many of the meetings as possible and share their thoughts. “It should be more than just a handful of people,” he said. Having sizable input will ensure that the district “can cover every angle,” he said.
       The current process is based on a consultants' “reutilization” study last fall that looked at ways to reduce the district's costs and to reverse its steady enrollment decrease over the past several years. Among consultant suggestions affecting the Westside were closing Buena Vista and Whittier elementaries and moving “magnet” programs out of those and other schools. And, the principal/staff meetings in December reportedly talked about actions closing or altering Pike, Midland or West. However, none of these is yet an official recommendation.
       Here are the other public meeting locations (all from 6:30 to 9 p.m.):
       Jan. 6, Mitchell High; Jan. 12, Hillside Commun-ity Center; Jan. 13, Palmer High; Jan. 15, Doherty High; Jan. 20, Wasson High.
       For more information, call Deputy Superintendent Mike Poore at 520-2406.

Westside Pioneer/press release