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EnrollJeffco a Success So Far, But Can Still Be Better: A Message from Superintendent Dr. Glass

EnrollJeffco a Success So Far, But Can Still Be Better: A Message from Superintendent Dr. Glass
Posted on 02/08/2019
Superintendent & Chief Learner Dr. Jason GlassLast spring, on my advice, the Board of Education allocated funds to create an online, one-stop-shop enrollment system for all Jeffco Public Schools. Also supported in part by funding from the Rose Community Foundation and the Gates Family Foundation, the vision was to create an easy to use platform for any family to enroll in one of our school options.

School choice is an integral part of the education landscape in Jeffco and Colorado. In our community, most parents choose their neighborhood school. We wanted to create a system that honored the guaranteed enrollment families are provided through their neighborhood school, while also allowing families to learn more about and enroll in the quality option and charter schools that are part of our district as well. We had a goal of making the school choice process more equitable, where every family had an equal opportunity to learn more about and enroll in different schools.

EnrollJeffco had an ambitious timeline: going from scratch to a fully operational system in less than six months was no small feat. At one point this fall, we were concerned about not being ready and considered delaying a year. Ultimately, we felt an obligation to our Board of Education and our philanthropic funders to deliver EnrollJeffco on time and within budget, so we took the necessary steps to make that happen.

In its first year, the system has not been perfect. Initially, we had issues with the school search feature, and there were problems with logins and the link to JeffcoConnect, our parent portal. We also had some families struggle with making the application work on their device or computer. I am pleased that our development partners and help desk teams stepped up through these challenges, redesigning the system as we went and supporting families throughout.

With the first phase of enrollment closing, EnrollJeffco now shifts to the school selection phase. By February 26, families can expect to get “offers” of enrollment to schools they chose and will have five days to accept or decline school offers. Once a family makes a decision, the other offers go away. This should be a great help to us in determining staffing based on accurate school enrollment going forward.

Looking ahead, we plan on making some changes to EnrollJeffco based on what we learned this year. For next year, families can expect to see better school search functionality, more information on school performance using a variety of measures, and for the whole system to be improved from a user-friendly perspective.

Overall, I’m proud of EnrollJeffco and commend everyone who helped get it off the ground this year. This includes our school staff and parents, who let us know of concerns and problems so that we could address them quickly and learn. Thanks for your patience as this system has developed and evolved, and you can count on an even better experience next year!

Jeffco students, parents, families, staff, and community members may engage with Dr. Glass via Facebook, Twitter @COJasonGlass, and through his blog, advancejeffco.blog.
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