Somebody at SLPS Gets It!
Or, at least, someone doing marketing for them has read the writing on the wall. I just watched the elementary school commercial for SLPS, which is available on the district’s website. It touts “magnet schools and choice schools.”
I’m not thrilled about the magnet schools’ complex, racially biased admissions process, but I love choice schools. Parents should have the option to choose schools within the traditional district, and I’m sure many will. SLPS needs to recognize this and focus on offering attractive choices for parents. It needs to move away from the “one address, one school” model that determines which school you attend based on your street rather than on your preferences. And it needs to learn from charter schools, and try to understand why parents like them so much.
One positive development is the SLPS virtual school, which opened in 2008 to students throughout the St. Louis area — including those who attend charters. It would be interesting if many students attend charters during the school day, then go back to SLPS for online classes after school.