Instead of a long post- I’m just going to share a few thoughts in a bite size chunk.
First off- if the district hadn’t been run by fools, this wouldn’t be an issue. The students are still in Dayton- they are just choosing to go elsewhere. Sure, better marketing might help, but DPS has failed to address a basic issue of safety, and academic performance is still perceived as mediocre overall.
The typical DPS High School is 450 students. We have Stivers, Ponitz, Belmont, Dunbar, Meadowdale, Thurgood Marshall. That’s 6 schools, with 6 staffs- including principals. I went to a three year high school that had 2,400 students and routinely had between 30 and 40 National Merit Scholars.
Dayton could have a lot less high schools and do just fine. Note, 9th grade is the critical point where DPS loses young black males. A dedicated 9th grade building, is one solution. The other problem is that DPS has Stivers, Belmont and Meadowdale going 7-12 which screws numbers up too.
When it comes to placement- Thurgood is almost in Trotwood- a district that only has 2400 students or so- and pays a superintendent, a treasurer, a school board and all the rest of that overhead. DPS could just merge with Trotwood and with Jefferson a district of 800- and save a ton of money on overhead and balance things out.
The real reason the city gives a shit about which buildings close you ask? Well, other than Nan Whaley’s megalomania? Meadowdale Elementary and HS are both in Harrison Twp- where the teachers don’t have to pay the 2.5% Dayton income tax. Close them down- and Dayton doesn’t care- close 2 others down- and they lose a few million in taxable income. How many of you think about stuff like that?
DPS just screwed parents twice in the last two years without asking- one was the switch to middle schools- which really pissed off a lot of Wright Brothers parents- and DPS switched to 4 bell times- which can be confusing and a pain in the rear for those with kids in the district in multiple buildings. DPS never asked the community about either switch- DPS just pulled the trigger- and shot themselves in both feet.
Maybe, if DPS went back to what was convenient for parents- they might come back to the district? Nah, DPS wouldn’t think about that.
And lastly- before DPS goes on and talks about involving the community in this discussion- maybe you can publish the exact numbers, trends, staffing and costs- for each building- so maybe the community can actually work with real data in doing an analysis? That’s how the big boys do it.
I’m placing a bet, a real, competent school board, hiring a superintendent that really knows and understands the district and the community- could solve these problems in less than 2 years.