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

A Parent’s Perspective: Learning Disabilities and ESSA in Colorado

By Nicola Frost, Understood.org Regional Field Manager, National Center for Learning Disabilities (ncld.org) My son has always been inquisitive and full of life. He loved to build structures out of recycled materials, playing with friends and asking “why”.  But in first grade his curiosity began to be replaced with fear.  He struggled to write his name,…

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Learning from the Navy?

A few years ago, I had the privilege of spending a few days learning about the US Navy’s training programs which included 24 hours on the USS Stennis, one of ten Nimitz class aircraft carriers.  There is nothing like sitting on the deck of an aircraft carrier at 11 PM in total darkness and 10-…

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How do we get “The Big Mo” in Aurora?

Recent events (and upcoming elections) have education leaders in Colorado asking: is there momentum in Aurora? What is “The Big Mo”? Some folks may have heard about the idea of “The Big Mo.”  It’s shorthand for a term in behavioral momentum theory that suggests success breeds success.  It’s the idea that when a campaign or…

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Stay Sharp Newsletter: September 2017

Update: We originally inappropriately reflected the Colorado Department of Education’s “2016 State of the State on Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners in Colorado.”  The presentation CDE staff made to the State Board of Education at the September 2017 Board meeting is part of a larger report that does, in fact, include results of emerging multilingual students on…

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Spinning Our Wheels: Are District Efforts the Key?

Colorado has been a leader on state education policy but we have little to show in terms of achievement improvement in spite of two decades of bipartisan support. More than 75% of Colorado’s jobs by 2020 will require some sort of post-secondary degree yet fewer than 23% of Colorado’s high school students are currently persisting…

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False Positives? Moving Beyond Brenda and Eddie

Student test scores came out a few weeks ago and once again districts, media, and pundits (us included), made lists of schools and districts to watch. It seems too often these days, education reformers get ahead of themselves declaring victory (with a year of growth data) or nothing at all before we know whether most…

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Beyond Family Engagement: Toward the “Open System”

For the past three years, I’ve worked at Denver Public Schools in the Office of Family and Community Engagement.  It has been an incredible experience and as I’ve transitioned to my new role as Senior Partner, Advocacy and Alliances at A+ Colorado, I’ve wanted  to reflect a bit more on my time and work.  …

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Stay Sharp Newsletter: August 2017

Our hearts go out to the thousands of students, families and educators being displaced by Hurricane Harvey. We applaud the Dallas Independent School District and others that are welcoming displaced families and providing student supports. It is important that students get wraparound services during these times. A+ Updates New A+ Staff A+ Colorado is thrilled to…

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Lessons from the Peach State

East Lake, a neighborhood on the outskirts of Atlanta has much to show us about how to revitalize an impoverished community without pushing out current residents. Twenty years ago, it was home to East Lake Meadows a public housing project that was known as for its high crime rate, failing schools, and food desert. In…

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Staff Changes

We are sad to say goodbye to our District Advocacy Director, Liz Reetz. Liz and her partner, Omar, are headed to Palo Alto, California where she will attend Stanford Law School. We want to thank Liz for her remarkable work with us. Her work in Aurora has gone the distance to mobilize more people to…

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