13 Investigates


Can you hear me now? Charter school accused of being noisy neighbor

Posted at 5:08 PM, Nov 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-06 21:26:30-05

Like clock work, each day, Shannon Smith says her backyard is filled with noisy announcements from a neighborhood charter school near North Durango and 215.

"I just don't need to hear everything that's going on at the school, and who sold the most candy and what the daily announcements are, it's not my business," said Smith.

Smith says the sounds are coming from Imagine Schools, Mountain View campus.

The charter school begins at 8:30 a.m., every weekday morning.
"In the mornings, I get the pledge of allegiance, I get the students' pledge, and a treasure hunter's pledge," said Smith.

Smith said the noise can last anywhere from a couple minutes to up to 10 minutes. She adds, she occasionally works overnight in the healthcare field, and at times, she is awoken by the loud speaker system.

A school administrator confirms to Contact 13, the all school public address system is used daily, which includes speakers on the exterior of the building.

During the afternoon rush to pickup students, school staff uses a bullhorn to announce students who are cleared for release.
Aside from the noise, Smith has questions regarding student privacy.

Smith has listened from her backyard patio and documented more than 50 names announced so far.

 "It is illegal [for an educational facility] to release any personal, identifiable information which includes a child's first and last name," adds Smith.

Smith is citing the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, also known as FERPA.

Among other stipulations, FERPA bans schools from releasing:

  • Student names
  • Names of parents
  • Student addresses

Imagine Schools administrator, Rhonda Cagle, tells Contact 13, the names overheard are not first and last names of students, but rather, a combination of student's first names with their teacher's last names.

Cagle said the school takes FERPA very seriously.

As for the noisy neighbor complaint, Cagle says there is a work order in place with a service provider to disconnect the exterior public address system, or at least reduce the volume, if it cannot be disconnected. The noise problem should be fixed within 10 business days.

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