By Karen Morfitt

DENVER (CBS4) – Denver Public Schools is one of the latest districts to return to in-person learning. It’s happening as state educational officials say they are seeing a decline in enrollment across Colorado.

“It will definitely will have an impact,” Denver Public Schools Superintendent Susana Cordova said.

(credit: CBS)

Their biggest decline is among their youngest students, including early education and kindergarten age.

“We have spoken with many families with children 3, 4 or 5 years old who are simply not ready to come back,” she said.

In a COVID-19 update on Tuesday, Gov. Jared Polis urged parents who may not yet be ready to attend in person classes, to still enroll in a public online course.

“The potential learning loss to kids can have implications for years to come,” he said.

Katy Anthes, Colorado’s education commissioner, added to the governor’s comments saying, “Students who aren’t in school or who aren’t engaged in remote learning aren’t just missing out on instruction, they’re missing out on opportunities to benefit from connections and other caring adults.”

(credit: CBS)

Districts across Colorado are also considering the impact low enrollment could have on funding. State dollars follow students, and those numbers are determined by a statewide count day.

“There are other factors we are focused on our free lunch forms are another way, even if students are in virtually learning,” Cordova said.

Many say the decline in numbers was not unexpected and are already looking at the future for balance.

“We hope and anticipate we will see a rebound next year we hope we are past the stages of such high concerns around COVID,” she said.

Karen Morfitt

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