Kansas City Public Schools seek community input

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Kansas City Public Schools had its first of four public meetings Tuesday night to gain community input on how to improve the district.

Tuesday's meeting allowed parents to meet with board members in small groups and offer suggestions. The focus was on how to improve student achievement, community engagement, parent involvement, and leadership.

This time last year, the district lost accreditation after only meeting three of the 14 standards of basic proficiency. Since then the district has improved to meet five, but is still one short of receiving provisional accreditation and four short of receiving full accreditation.

Chris Barrero teaches at a charter school and says the lack of accreditation is creating a lot of concern for district parents.

"Parents especially may feel like their students aren't going to be prepared," Barrero said.

School Board Chairman Airick Leonard West was at Tuesday's meeting and listened to the small group discussions. He says the lack of accreditation is only a temporary problem. He says he is more focused on finding long term solutions.

"People want their children to be literate and numerate such that they can be successful," Leonard West said. "That remains to be our goal for our scholars in so much as if we accomplish that, accreditation will take care of itself."

The three remaining meetings are scheduled from 6 to 7 p.m., and will be held at the following locations.

  • Tuesday, Jan. 22 - Garcia Elementary, 1000 W. 17th Street
  • Thursday, Jan. 24 - Border Star Montessori, 6321 Wornall
  • Tuesday, Jan. 29 - Gladstone Elementary, 335 N. Elmwood
  • Thursday, Jan. 31 - Paseo Academy, 4747 Flora

After the meetings are complete, the board plans on reviewing all the suggestions and filing a public report in February.

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