No slowing down now…

It's crunch-time! Everything is ramping up under the Dome as the long-bill is prepared to be finalized, the School Finance Act is being put together, and legislators have only six weeks left to make sure they've made a positive impact for our public schools this session. This update provides a rundown of what's happened this week, and  previews what you can expect in the next few weeks. The Long Bill On Tuesday, the Joint Budget Committee (JBC) presented their work on the Long Bill (aka the state budget) on Tuesday which included two important notes for education ...

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60 days down, 60 days to go…

Wednesday marked the halfway point of the legislative session — that means things will really start speeding up in what's already been an exciting session. The legislature made some important decisions regarding funding for next year's state education fund and full-day kindergarten. Read on to find out what's happening... Full-Day Kindergarten Moves Ahead There is finally a bill draft for full-day kindergarten that will be introduced by Representatives Wilson and McLachlan! Sponsors are looking to introduce this bill as soon as possible. Some details:Currently ...

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Another Small Step

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Money, money, and more money

This week we've had our eyes on the Joint Budget Committee (JBC) and the Governor's office as they take big steps on public education funding. The JBC  hearings can be a LOT to dive into...so we're here to summarize what's been happening and what you need to pay attention to moving forward.And just a reminder -- to be an advocate, you don't have to know all the ins-and-outs of school finance.  We're just giving you the skinny, so that you can dive in at a level that's comfortable! JBC Supplemental Bill Update Over the past couple of weeks, we have talked about ...

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The legislature continues to take (small) steps forward for public education

As you know, we here at Great Ed are laser-focused on making sure the legislature uses every tool available to  support sustainable and equitable increases to school funding.  That's more than a full-time job (which is why we need you to help!). Here are some of the bills we are monitoring which take steps to increase school funding. Keep in mind, Colorado is over $2 billion behind the national average in per pupil funding. Joint Budget Committee Supplemental Bill Last week, an amendment was proposed by Representative Kipp to bring back $12.1 million to school ...

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You don’t want to miss this week’s legislative recap…

This week was such an important week at the legislature. While a lot of attention was focused on the DPS teacher strike, bills continued to move through the legislature. We'll get you up to speed with this week's legislative update! DPS Teacher Strike Early Thursday morning, a deal was reached between DPS and DCTA which included an increase in base salary on a clear and transparent 20-step salary schedule, full cost of living increases in years two and three of the agreement. While this settlement is great news, we shouldn't lose track of the fact that underfunding of ...

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The DPS Strike is Settled, but the Underlying Causes of Chronic Undercompensation Remain

“All Colorado teachers are underpaid because Colorado's constitutional tax code is starving our schools. We need fully, adequately and equitably funded public education.”  — Lisa Weil, Executive Director, Great Education Colorado. The DPS community, Coloradoans, and policymakers are figuring out what the DPS strike and settlement mean to students and teachers. But in the meantime, students and teachers across the state are still operating without appropriate funding. The historic and woeful underfunding of our schools is something that needs to change for a ...

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What’s happening at the Capitol this week?

It's been a whirlwind of a week at the legislature! Starting the week off with a bang, the JBC took public comment on the state budget for the first time ever. The middle of the week remained interesting as Governor Polis made the decision to allow the Denver teachers' strike to begin on Monday, February 11. Keep reading to learn more! Joint Budget Committee The Joint Budget Committee (JBC)  listened to over three hours of public testimony on Monday afternoon and the message was loud and clear — education is one of the most important issues to voters in Colorado ...

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What’s happening at the Capitol this week?

Reporting to you from week four (!) at the Capitol.  There's no shortage of conversations about possible legislation that could have a large impact on school funding (e.g., full-day Kindergarten, fiscal reform, the School Finance Act, and mill levy equalization to name a few), but those haven't yet been introduced.  In the meantime, action is picking up in the Education Committees. What's important for you to know about this week at the Capitol?Governor Polis made the case for funding full-day kindergarten to the Joint Education Committee on Wednesday morning, ...

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This week at the Capitol: full-day Kindergarten, legislative meet-ups and more!

The biggest news from the Capitol for Great Ed, is our official support of Governor Polis's push to fund full-day Kindergarten by Fall 2019. We are excited to announce we will be joining the Governor's coalition in support of full-day K and working to make sure our kids get the education they need from day one. The Governor's proposal is an important first step toward reversing decades of chronic underfunding in our public schools, but we must continue advocating for the necessary funding to ensure that all Colorado children — regardless of where they live or how they ...

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