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Colorado officials urge parents to enroll kids in schools

© flickrcc - Alan Levine
Derek Draplin | The Center Square

(The Center Square) – Governor Jared Polis urged Colorado parents to enroll their kids in schools during a Tuesday news briefing.

The governor said he's concerned that school enrollment is down in the state but didn’t specify data. 

“It really would be beneficial to enroll your kid in the school and at least begin the online program even if you’re not ready to send your kid back in person,” he said. 

Colorado's school count day is Thursday, officials said, noting it's still important to enroll students beyond count day.

Polis warned that children who miss out on learning “will have difficulty reentering the classroom if they weren’t part of the online education for the first semester.” 

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Jared Polis - elected Governor of Colorado in November 2018.

“We know that the potential learning loss for highest needs kids – English language learners, students with disabilities, low income students – can have implications for years to come,” the governor said.

Polis noted that parents can enroll their kids in any online public school program in the state for free.

Colorado Department of Education Commissioner Katy Anthes said students who aren’t engaging or enrolled even in remote learning “aren’t just missing out on instruction, they’re missing out on opportunities to benefit from connections” and other resources school districts can still provide.

“Attend school every day, make sure your students are checking in with their school teachers and school professionals even if they’re doing so remotely,” she added. 

School districts across the state are offering in-person, online and hybrid learning options. 

Denver Public Schools started the school year on Aug. 24, opting for online instruction only.

Earlier this month, Colorado officials announced a plan to offer 34,000 low-income households with a free wifi hotspot and 100GB of data provided by T-Mobile for remote learning.