DENVER (KDVR) — A group of Denver Public Schools parents is demanding more data and transparency to keep their kids safe.
The Parents Safety Advocacy Group, also known as PSAG, said it wants data on existing programs designed to keep students safe in Denver’s public schools. The group said that data will answer a lot of questions.
“What changes need to be made to the safety policy and discipline matrix to be sure and to ensure the safety of all of our students and staff?” PSAG member Teresa Pena said.
The group formed after the East High School shooting that left two deans injured and a student dead nearly 3 weeks ago. The group said it will not stop asking the district questions until Denver public schools are safer.
“This is not a moment for maybe. This is a moment (when) we must demand transparency now on policies and practices,” Larry Thomas said.
The group is also criticizing the school board for discussing student safety issues in an executive session.
Two DPS board members were present when PSAG made its latest demands.
“I think the board of education is closely looking into all of the recommendations that are being brought forward and it is important to us that we act swiftly,” DPS board member at large and Vice President Auon’tai Anderson said.
Board member Scott Esserman was also present and the two told FOX31 they heard about the gathering and showed up to hear what the parents would be saying.
But can data really help?
A company called SmartData Dashboard says it can help do this by identifying students through metrics in trouble before it’s too late.
“I’m not saying there’s always a behavior problem. It could be an academic struggle. It could be they don’t have the right resources. Maybe they have dyslexia or characteristics of autism and are not identified yet,” SmartData Dashboard Chief Strategist Harvey Hughes said.
That data could help prevent another school tragedy and keep their kids safe, parents say.