What do we owe our children?

It’s a question of legacy and priorities, about hopes, dreams and responsibility. What do we owe our children? It’s a question that could spark a long, interesting conversation among parents, students, citizens, and policymakers. But here in Colorado, this isn’t a theoretical question. In Colorado, there is one particular, concrete debt that we literally owe Colorado’s children. In 2000, when we passed Amendment 23, Colorado voters made a promise in the constitution to increase our investment in Colorado’s kids — in good times and bad. We haven’t kept ...

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Session review: A good year to build on

The 2014 legislative session ended last week and we were left with this question: What do you call a session where the legislature did make significant new investments in education (preschool through higher ed) but did not do all it could have to restore the $1 billion we owe our students? We call it "a good year to build on." Let's break it down. First of all, it was a "good year" because of unprecedented engagement by public education supporters. Not only were the superintendents virtually unanimous in their advocacy for significant reversal of the ...

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An open letter to public education supporters

Thank you. When this session began, the conventional wisdom was that there would be no effort to reverse education cuts – that keeping up with inflation was the most we should expect. We knew then that it had to be “grassroots to the rescue” of Colorado’s students. We set citizen advocacy goals and you blew past them. And when the dust settled on the session, Colorado’s students fared a whole lot better (more than $150 million better) than the “conventional wisdom” predicted. This year, grassroots mattered. Here’s what you accomplished:. 105 ...

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First Take: What Happened on School Finance?

It took until the last day of the session, but the legislature has finally made its decisions on funding for the 2014-15 school year.   We’ll provide further analysis when the ink has dried next week; for now, just the facts (and just a little commentary). This year was marked by unprecedented engagement by public education supporters.   Not only were the superintendents virtually unanimous in their advocacy for significant reversal of the negative factor, but Great Ed supporters made their voices heard loud, clear and effectively in the Capitol.  Grassrootsmade ...

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Students need addition, not subtraction

We will be losing Spanish, woodshop, gifted talented, half our physical education and half our computer classes as well as cutting back on levels of math and language classes. — ML, Hesperus Now after seeing how low a priority funding is, I have to reconsider my choice of Colorado as a future place to grow my business. — JJ, Broomfield These are just a couple of the hundreds of stories we collected last month; they are the words of people who — like you — understand that the need to reinvest in our schools is urgent. Unfortunately, that sense of ...

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In the Vail Daily: Repair damage of cuts

Great Education Colorado's board chair Margie Adams and Wendy Rimel. a parent and president of Education Foundation of Eagle County, wrote an editorial for the Vail Daily about what's happening the in the legislature: It’s spring, and for Colorado’s students that means state testing. This year, the same is true at the state Capitol where legislators, too, are facing a particularly high-stakes test. The key question for them: When is the right time to start repairing the damage caused by the five years of state cuts? Three answers to that question are circulating ...

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A Message from 6 Gypsum Teachers

“What an experience! I am so pumped for us to keep the ball rolling and get more players on board fighting for Colorado kids!”  Last Friday we were delighted to have several Gypsum teachers join us at Eagle County Advocacy Day at the Capitol. Here, in their own words, is what they wanted to tell you following their advocacy at the Capitol: Dear Fellow Teachers and Education Supporters, This past Friday, a group of us from Eagle County took our personal stories of how budget cuts have impacted our students to legislators at the Capitol. We spoke with legislat...

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The graph that says it all … updated

The most recent numbers of per-pupil funding in Colorado vs. the national average have been posted in our statistics section. The latest update shows that as of the 2010-11 school year, Colorado is $1,872 below the national average per pupil, the largest gap it has been since the downward trend begin in 1982.

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Who will Great Education Colorado honor this year?

Great Education Colorado is proud to announce that we will honor Dr. Donna Lynne, President of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado, at the annual Great Education Colorado Luncheon this fall (date and location to be announced). We are also pleased to announce a new award created in fond memory of our former Board Chair, Vicki Mattox, to recognize and celebrate those who have dedicated their lives to educating the students of Colorado. The first recipient of this award is Dr. Cynthia Stevenson, former Superintendent of the Jefferson County School District.  ...

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Will Colorado Keep Its Promise?

Back in 2000, Colorado voters made a promise to our kids. By passing Amendment 23, we told them that we would invest in their education — in their future — in good times and bad. Colorado hasn't really kept that promise. In fact, because of the Great Recession, we're currently funding schools at a level $1 billion below the promise we made 14 years ago. That's why class sizes are bigger, electives have disappeared, and individual attention has suffered. Now we're in better times. The legislature has $1.4 billion more to spend this year than they spent last ...

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