Denver Public Schools puts AmeriCorps program on hold pending investigation

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DENVER — Denver Public Schools are putting an AmeriCorps program on hold pending the completion an investigation.

While DPS revealed the investigation was conducted by Serve Colorado, the state agency that administers the AmeriCorps program, the district did not disclose specifics in regard to what was investigated. AmeriCorps would also not discuss what the investigation is about.

The program being investigated is called Family and Community Engagement.

According to the DPS website, FACE helps community members, educators, students and parents better engage with one another while “earning an education award to further their own academic goals.”

“AmeriCorps members align their passions and skills with the needs of schools and communities by developing service projects that target academic achievement, in addition to engaging parents to volunteer more in the classroom and participate in school activities,” the website says.

The hold on the program went into effect on Monday.

DPS said the decision will not have an impact on AmeriCorps members’ employment and that the “employment activities” for the 450 FACE members will stay the same. However, DPS also said that members will not record any AmeriCorps hours served or participate in AmeriCorps activities during the hold.

“We apologize to AmeriCorps members for the effect this hold will have on their time and personal goals. The service AmeriCorps members do for our students and schools is incredibly important, and we’re committed to finding ways to minimize the impact of this hold period on these educators’ careers,” DPS said in a statement on Thursday.

DPS said when it incorporated the AmeriCorps program eight years ago, the main goal was to increase student attendance.

The school district also noted the investigation only affects the FACE program, not other programs like City Year Denver.

Following Serve Colorado’s investigation, the results will be reviewed by the Office of Inspector General for the Corporation for National and Community Service. DPS estimates the review will take between 30 and 90 days.

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