Blog posts are the opinions of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of A+ Colorado.

Setting the Bar for Innovation

Aurora Public Schools will be approaching the State Board of Education in May with a proposed Innovation Zone to implement next year. Five* schools in the Aurora Central High School feeder pattern will make up the zone that will be organized around a theme of global leadership. We’ve been monitoring the process closely, and provided…

Continue Reading …


Measuring Educational Equity: Mission Accomplished or Merely Begun?

Post originally appeared in the Thomas B. Fordham Flypaper blog, republished here with slight modifications. Education Cities and Great Schools recently released a useful new educational data tool called the Education Equality Index (EEI), which allows users to compare cities and states across the nation that are “closing the achievement gap.” The tool compiles school-level…

Continue Reading …


Neighborhood Schools and the Achievement Gap

By Laura Lefkowits In 1995, Federal District Court Judge Richard Matsch terminated the decades-old desegregation order for Denver Public Schools claiming that the district had “removed the vestiges of past discrimination to the extent practicable.” As it turned out, the “extent practicable” in Denver was minimal given the exit from DPS of over 30,000 mostly…

Continue Reading …


Starting the Year Off Write(ing)

Did you make any New Year’s resolutions? Though I generally prefer to think of life as a “continuous improvement plan,” I appreciate the social pressure to reflect and take stock of the past year, and set goals for the next one. Some things I’d like for myself in 2016: do more art, read more books,…

Continue Reading …


Not Knocking It Out of the PARCC

It’s been about nine months since kids started taking PARCC tests and one month since the state released some of the data on schools, and yet many families still do not have results for their kids. The data we do have is not disaggregated by student groups (a key tool for monitoring that all students…

Continue Reading …


College Opportunity and the American Way

In May, my oldest daughter will graduate from college debt free. Our last payment will will be in two weeks when I will be lifting a glass in celebration. She will have the gift of a BA from a good college, unburdened by loan payments so that she might pursue the career of her choice.…

Continue Reading …


2016 Rambles No. 1: Educating for Citizenship

By Jan Brennan Can one semester of civics prepare metro Denver youth for an active and informed role in democracy and community life? If you are doubtful, the statistics should strengthen your skepticism. The National Assessment of Educational Progress reports that only 23% of American 8th grade students demonstrated civics proficiency in 2014[i]. A Crisis…

Continue Reading …


Another View: Sherlock Holmes for Superintendent

Another View #141 Peter Huidekoper,Jr. http://anotherviewphj.blogspot.com/ January 5, 2016 Curiosity – a key ingredient to better schools We celebrate curiosity in our students. Their curiosity and wonder provides much of the joy for those of us who teach. We depend on it.  Even for our jaded juniors and seniors, thank God, it’s still there. Education…

Continue Reading …


A Socratic Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving couldn’t come at a better time this year. With conflict and violence on the rise around the globe, it provides a rare time to bring family, neighbors and friends together to cook, talk and hang out. And there are no gifts! It’s my favorite holiday. We will gather part of our tribe in Los…

Continue Reading …


My Holiday Wish List

Data-driven decision-making. It’s a term bandied about by many of us in education. Data should—and often does—inform policy. For example, data from the task force exploring the amount of instructional time spent on testing was instrumental at the state house last year with the passage of HB 15-1323. At the district level, Denver’s Facility Allocation…

Continue Reading …