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Denver School Board Finally Approves New Charter School Centering Black Students

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The school board in Denver has finally approved a charter school centering Black students and culture.

According to the Denver Post, the school board approved plans for the 5280 Freedom School to open next fall. Plans for the school were initially rejected in June but were green-lighted last week after 5280 Freedom filed an appeal with the State Board of Education. The Board found the District’s decision was against the best interests of the students, school district and community.

However, in order for the school to open, the 5280 Freedom School must fill all of its seats in its first year. The school plans with 52 students for both kindergarten and first grade. It will then add grades each year up to fifth grade.

“The 5280 Freedom School teaches students from ECE-8th grade to become racially literate and civically-minded by centering Black knowledge, people, and principles. The 5280 FreedoThe 5280 Freedom School teaches students from ECE-8th grade to become racially literate and civically-minded by centering Black knowledge, people, and principles,” the school’s mission statement reads via the website. “The 5280 Freedom School exists in order to dismantle oppressive systems, to liberate ourselves, and to empower our students to transform the world.m School exists in order to dismantle oppressive systems, to liberate ourselves, and to empower our students to transform the world.”

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The school also wants to empower young Black students to become leaders, including those who identify as queer or trans.

The board initially rejected the school’s plan because they did not believe the school could fill the seats required to become a financially viable institution.

The school has been fundraising via GoFundMe, primarily to support its 5280 Summer Freedom.

The school has raised more than $18,000 or its $20,000 goal.

“We are unapologetically Black in our positioning. In affirming that Black Lives Matter, we need not qualify our position. To love and desire freedom and justice for ourselves is a necessary prerequisite for wanting the same for others.,’ the school’s mission statement adds.

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