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

ACT Results Show: High School Graduation ≠ College Ready

By: Peter Huidekoper, Jr. When our final ACT results were released last month, there was good news.  Chalkbeat Colorado opened its story with a Well done! Colorado is ending its run with the ACT college entrance exam on a high note. The state’s overall average composite score last year was a 20.4, the highest it’s been…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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Ramble Issue No. 7: Northfield HS: The School Reform that Needs our Attention and Support

By Dr. Philip Bernhardt The recent opening of Northfield High School (NHS) in Denver is a significant event that anyone committed to educating children and improving schools needs to be paying close attention to. Why pay attention? First, Northfield HS has de-tracked its academic programming; all students participate in the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma pathway.…

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Another View on School Choice in Denver

Another View #134 Peter Huidekoper, Jr. August 12th, 2015    School Choice in Denver – much good news, but is it too difficult? Given so much good news about the SchoolChoice process in Denver—and I am a fan – it may seem uncharitable to focus on a trouble spot. But if low-income and minority families…

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How to Slice the Summer Pie

By Sari Levy Summer break isn’t an American invention but it has come to feel as American as apple pie. Only, in the true American spirit, we eat it all in a single sitting.  Summer break’s origins (like Spring break’s) are  likely in ancient Greece, when it was too hot during the summer to concentrate.…

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(In)Equality in Arts

By Sari Levy Over the spring semester, we’ve been visiting schools (both public and private) and classrooms to see their arts programs. Hardly our first foray into arts education (see our previous report on the subject) these visits do help us broaden our understanding of what schools – and their arts education– can look like.…

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Another View on Grad Rates: Peter Huidekoper

Another View #131 Peter Huidekoper, Jr. June 10, 2015 Higher graduation rates? A word of caution before we celebrate In our state, the high school graduation statistics tell us little about what that degree means—in terms of a graduate’s knowledge and skills.  Last week’s 2014 Legislative Report on Remedial Education again makes that clear: (http://highered.colorado.gov/Publications/Reports/Remedial/FY2014/2014_Remedial_relJune03.pdf).…

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Looking for the Forest through the Trees

By Sari Levy No one wants to be asked to defend testing. In Boulder, where I live, anti-testing fervor is almost as strong as the pro-organic-gardening-fervor. To prove their point, 84% of students at Boulder Valley High opted out of the last fall’s science and social studies testing. We are a small but typical cluster…

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