Great Education Colorado http://www.greateducation.org Grassroots Powering Education Tue, 27 Sep 2016 16:42:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Design a state budget that reflects your values http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/09/5642/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/09/5642/#respond Tue, 27 Sep 2016 15:30:29 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5642 Mission: Possible allows Coloradans to design their own state budget, share the results

Great Education Colorado and the Colorado Association of School Boards (CASB) have developed Mission: Possible, an interactive online budget simulation that allows Coloradans to make their own spending and revenue choices for the state budget.

Great Ed and CASB teamed up on this project because we believe all state residents must understand Colorado’s fiscal challenges and all possible solutions. In Colorado, because of constitutional amendments, it is voters – not legislators – who make the most important decisions about how Colorado invests in its future.

The simulation tool is named Mission: Possible because CASB and Great Ed believe Coloradans will want to design budgets that will allow our state to fully fund our schools, colleges and transportation – and all of the state’s essential public services.

Above all, Mission: Possible is an educational tool that allows state residents to learn about how the state raises and spends money. They can explore options that legislators can’t – Colorado is the only state where lawmakers can’t make tax policy.

In using the tool, Coloradans will learn some interesting and surprising things:

  • They will see how Colorado compares to the national average and highest-performing (and lowest-performing) states on per-pupil funding. If they dig deep, they will find that Colorado hasn’t been near the national average since the late1980s.
  • They will learn that no money from marijuana taxes goes into school classrooms. This tax revenue does many good things, but it does not do what many people think.
  • They will see how Colorado’s public schools and colleges universities have lost ground to high-achieving states and have dropped below the national average, when it comes to funding.
  • They will learn that rolling back the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act would save no state dollars this year.
  • They will learn that a pig can run a seven-minute mile. Honest. It’s amazing what you learn when you dig into the state budget.

When it comes to revenues, Mission: Possible users can see how Colorado compares to other states. Spoiler alert: In most every category for state revenue, Colorado’s tax rates rank among the lowest in the nation.

Is Colorado’s budget adequate to the task? Coloradans can answer that question – and can recommend changes – by using Mission: Possible to explore the state budget in an engaging way.

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Your Community, Your Future, Your Vote http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/09/community-future-vote/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/09/community-future-vote/#respond Mon, 05 Sep 2016 23:42:38 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5593 Our schools, our roads, our sidewalks, our trails, our parks…they’re all the result of people like you voting every election they can. However, the work isn’t done yet. We still have a ways to go to make Colorado and our communities better for everyone. So, come this November—are you in?

Visit our website page to learn more about how to update your registration or how to register to vote. We will keep you in the loop on all the latest voting news. No spam. Only information that makes it easier for you and your family to vote in November.

Voting is an opportunity that we too often take for granted. This November, make sure you’re ready to vote alongside your family members, coworkers, neighbors, and peers by pledging to vote. Your vote is your voice. When we show up as a community to vote in November, our voice becomes unbeatable and it ensures our community will support a Colorado where all children—regardless of where they live or how they learn—graduate prepared to lead their best lives.

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2016 Great Education Colorado Impact Report http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/07/2016-great-education-colorado-impact-report/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/07/2016-great-education-colorado-impact-report/#respond Thu, 21 Jul 2016 13:47:36 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5554 With more than 20,000 supporters in over 200 communities across Colorado, Great Education Colorado is a statewide, nonpartisan advocacy organization that brings grassroots muscle to the fight for improved investment in public education. Check out our accomplishments for the first 6 months of this year in our 2016 Great Ed Impact Report.

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Is more money really going to improve education? http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/06/money-improve-education/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/06/money-improve-education/#respond Wed, 01 Jun 2016 14:38:34 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5473 Studies demonstrate that well-targeted dollars have a direct, positive effect on student outcomes.   To list just a few:

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If this measure passes, what prevents the legislature from reducing the amount they would have funded K12 education? http://www.greateducation.org/ballot-questions/2016/05/measure-passes-prevents-legislature-reducing-amount-funded-k12-education/ http://www.greateducation.org/ballot-questions/2016/05/measure-passes-prevents-legislature-reducing-amount-funded-k12-education/#respond Mon, 23 May 2016 22:01:44 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5465 This ballot measure requires at least 35% of the additional revenue to be directed to education, including pre-school through 12th grade education, vocational education and higher education. As in every legislative session, the legislature has the ability to cut education in order to fund other areas of the state budget. However, the negative factor provides a mechanism for tracking those cuts and our advocates will be at the Capitol highlighting the shell game if that becomes an issue.

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What is the language set by the Title Board for the measures? http://www.greateducation.org/ballot-questions/2016/04/language-set-title-board-measures/ http://www.greateducation.org/ballot-questions/2016/04/language-set-title-board-measures/#respond Thu, 07 Apr 2016 18:48:45 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5432 The Title Board met on April 6 and set title for the following three versions of the ballot measure:


Measure #116

A change to the Colorado Revised Statutes permanently authorizing the state to retain and spend all state revenues that exceed the constitutional limitation on state fiscal year spending, and, in connection therewith, dedicating specified percentages of any revenues retained to fund education and transportation projects and allowing the state to use remaining revenues retained for the same purposes and to fund mental health services and senior services.

 

Measure #117

A change to the Colorado Revised Statutes authorizing the state to retain and spend state revenues that exceed the constitutional limitation on state fiscal year spending, and, in connection therewith, authorizing the state to retain and spend all such revenues collected during the ten fiscal years from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2025; authorizing the state to annually retain and spend such revenues for any subsequent fiscal year in an amount equal to the highest amount collected in any single fiscal year during the ten-year period adjusted for increases in state population and inflation; dedicating specified percentages of any revenues retained to fund education and transportation projects; and allowing the state to use remaining revenues retained for the same purposes and for mental health services and senior services.

 

Measure #118

A change to the Colorado Revised Statutes authorizing the state to retain and spend state revenues that exceed the constitutional limitation on state fiscal year spending, and, in connection therewith, authorizing the state to retain and spend all such revenues collected during the ten fiscal years from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2025, and authorizing the state to annually retain and spend such revenues for any subsequent fiscal year in an amount equal to the highest amount collected in any single fiscal year during the ten-year period adjusted for increases in state population and inflation.

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Just look at what you did http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/01/just-look-at-what-you-did/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/01/just-look-at-what-you-did/#respond Tue, 12 Jan 2016 16:26:17 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5272 Just a few days ago, we asked public education supporters around Colorado to stand with Colorado’s school superintendents — either in person or in spirit — at the state capitol, as they called on the legislature for adequate funding of schools.

The response was overwhelming. Thousands of Coloradans joined you in showing support. The Denver Post, KUSADenver 7Colorado Public Radio, the Gazette, and the Daily Camera all provided extensive coverage.

Hundreds of you showed up at the capitol. It looked like this:

Over 2,000 people from over 160 communities signed our statement supporting the superintendents. Here’s what that looked like:

supesmap

We also asked people signing the statement to tell us why adequate funding for schools matters to you. Here’s a visual analysis of what you told us.

Thanks to you, this was an incredible start for 2016 — a year when we can and must make a real difference for Colorado’s students. In the coming weeks and months, we’ll keep you posted about other simple ways you can advocate for better school funding, both at the capitol and in preparation for a November ballot initiative.

With this kind of momentum, there’s no limit to what we can accomplish together.

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New Year’s Resolution: Stand Up! http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/01/years-resolution-stand/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2016/01/years-resolution-stand/#respond Fri, 08 Jan 2016 15:48:06 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5268 Class sizes too big? School fees too high? Teachers spread too thin?

Those are symptoms of a state that chronically underfunds its schools. With the Colorado state legislative session starting next week, it’s more important than ever that our state leaders hear the voices of public education supporters who know we can and must do better for our children.

Fortunately, Colorado’s school superintendents have provided us with a great way to raise our voices together for kids and remind returning legislators what’s at stake for Colorado’s kids this year:

Colorado School Superintendents’ Call for Adequate Funding
Monday, January 11, 2016 11:30 a.m.
Colorado State Capitol, West Foyer

Great Ed will be there, and we hope you will, too! (RSVP here.)

If you can’t attend, we hope you will stand with the superintendents virtually, by signing our statement of supportWe want to show legislators that public education supporters throughout Colorado appreciate the Colorado Superintendents’ Advocacy for Adequate School Funding and their continuing work to ensure that Colorado delivers on the promise of an effective education for each and every child in our state through excellent public schools.

We hope you’ll take this opportunity — either in person or online — to amplify the voices of the state’s school leaders, as they call on policymakers to work in partnership to find new solutions to the challenges ahead so every Colorado student receives the education they deserve.

Let’s start the year off right!

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Great Education Colorado celebrates Bob Deibel and Colorado’s superintendents at 2015 Luncheon http://www.greateducation.org/news/2015/10/great-education-colorado-celebrates-bob-deibel-colorados-superintendents-2015-luncheon/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2015/10/great-education-colorado-celebrates-bob-deibel-colorados-superintendents-2015-luncheon/#respond Fri, 02 Oct 2015 15:02:10 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5187 At the 5th Annual Great Education Colorado Luncheon on October 1, 2015, Great Ed honored Bob Deibel, president of OfficeScapes, and presented Colorado’s superintendents with the Vicki A. Mattox Award for Excellence in Education. Scroll down to see the first video from the Colorado School Experience, which features Deibel and premiered at the luncheon, and photos from the event. Learn more about the luncheon and donate here.

Our thanks to all who attended and donated so generously to make Great Ed’s work — Grassroots Powering Education — possible.

Bob Deibel’s acceptance speech:

Boulder Valley School District Superintendent Bruce Messinger:

Photos from the event:

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Statement of Great Education Colorado on the Supreme Court Decision in Dwyer v. Colorado http://www.greateducation.org/news/2015/09/statement-great-education-colorado-supreme-court-decision-dwyer-colorado/ http://www.greateducation.org/news/2015/09/statement-great-education-colorado-supreme-court-decision-dwyer-colorado/#respond Mon, 21 Sep 2015 19:34:28 +0000 http://www.greateducation.org/?p=5154 Supreme Court Allows the State to Renege on the Promise Voters Made to Students by Passing Amendment 23

Today’s disappointing decision is, unfortunately, just another in a long line of setbacks for the children of Colorado. Despite the voters’ best efforts to take students off the tracks of Colorado’s inevitable fiscal train wreck by passing Amendment 23, the state Supreme Court has put them right back in harm’s way. As the legislature continues to cut $1,000 per student every year, today’s decision slams shut the courthouse door. It appears that the only remedy — the only way to make sure that every child has access to the educational opportunities that will lead them to success — may be to go back to the voters to renew our promise to the children of Colorado.

It is within our power as Coloradans to make all the investments necessary to ensure the continuing vitality of our families, communities and state economy. That power rests in tools available both to our legislature and the voters. There are already efforts to take such action in 2016; today’s ruling only increases the urgency of those efforts.

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