We have a child-care crisis in this country. We had the solution 78 years ago.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

(The Washington Post) - Millions of babies are born in this country every year, although the numbers are declining. Last year, the United States had its lowest birthrate in 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In a new survey, in which participants were asked why they were having fewer children than they wanted, the top responses were almost all economic: “child care is too expensive,” “can’t afford more children,” “waited because of financial instability,” “worried about the economy.” Babies are costly, and the current administration is not offering relief for the majority anytime soon. 

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New schools opening in Denver, Aurora, Douglas County, Broomfield, Thornton, Erie, more

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

(7News) - Multiple school districts across the Front Range will be opening new schools this fall to keep up with our growing population.

Denver Public Schools

Denver Public Schools has four new schools opening this fall. All four are charter schools -- a high school, a middle school and two elementary schools.

  • 5280 High School. Year 1 enrollment: 114, full build: 416
  • KIPP Sunshine Peak Elementary. Year 1: 94 (ECE & K); full build: 469
  • DSST Middle School at Noel Campus. Year 1: 147; full build 440
  • Rocky Mountain Prep Berkeley. Year 1: TBA; full build: 508

Rocky Mountain Prep Berkeley replaces the Cesar Chavez Academy that was closed due to academic performance.

JeffCo Public Schools

While JeffCo Public Schools is not opening any new schools this fall, they do have two changes:

  • Free Horizon Montessori is transitioning from a charter schools to a district innovation school. It will be the building the housed the former Pleasant View Elementary School.
  • Pennington Elementary will now be Peak Expeditionary School at Pennington. They are shifting to a new academic model, district officials said.

Douglas County School District

The Douglas County School District has two new schools opening this fall, both are charter schools:

  • Ascent Classical Academy
  • Leman Academy of Excellence

Cherry Creek School District

The Cherry Creek School District has one new school opening in August - Infinity Middle School.

About 160 sixth-graders planning to attend Infinity actually started classes last year at Sky Vista Middle School.

Interestingly, another school opening later this fall, Altitude Elementary School, will start classes at Infinity Middle School unless its campus is ready to open later this fall.

Aurora Public Schools

Aurora Public Schools is opening one new school building this fall at Mrachek Middle School.

The old building was used last year while the new building was being constructed on the same campus.

The new school isn't quite ready, so students at Mrachek will start classes on September 10.

APS officials said the school is built to accommodate 1,000 students. Enrollment figures for this fall aren't available yet, but officials said Mrachek had 847 students last year.

Adams 12 Five Star Schools

The Adams 12 Five Star School District has a new P-8 school opening in Broomfield.

Thunder Vista P-8 has about 566 registered for classes.

District officials said as the Anthem area grows, the school is expected to handle 900 K-8 students and 128 preschool students, which is capacity.

St. Vrain Valley School District

The St. Vrain Valley School District has two schools opening this fall. One of them is close to capacity already.

The new schools are:

  • Soaring Heights PK-8 in Erie. Enrollment: 875 students; Capacity: 900
  • Grand View Elementary in Frederick. Enrollment: 250 students; Capacity: 650

The district told Denver7 that Erie is one of the fastest growing communities in the district's boundaries.

Boulder Valley School District

While there is construction at existing schools, no new schools are opening this fall, district officials said.

However, voter-passed bonds paid for work at 16 schools.

Among the projects were renovations and improvements at Broomfield High School that included the library, field house, classrooms and cafeteria.

Read more about the bond projects on a special website created by the district.

Poudre School District

The Poudre School District said it is not opening any new schools this fall.

Greeley-Evans School District 6

We are waiting for a response from the district, please check back later.

Brighton School District 27-J

The Brighton School District 27-J is opening a new school building this fall that will house the new Riverdale Ridge High School and Roger Quist Middle School, while the Middle School building is being built across the street.

"Riverdale Ridge will start with 9-10 the first year and add grades each year until the reach 9-12," school officials said. "Roger Quist will have its own wing at Riverdale Ridge, keeping middle and high students somewhat separate, housing grades 6-8."

While Roger Quist Middle School is completed in 2020, those students and staff will move across the street.

The opening of Riverdale Ridge is expected to relieve some of the overcrowding at Brighton High School and Prairie View High School.

Enrollment stats:

  • Brighton High School. Enrollment: 1812; Capacity: 1771
  • Prairie View High School. Enrollment: 1911; Capacity: 1901
  • Riverdale Ridge High School. Enrollment: 520; Capacity: 1756

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Can Big Bird and Elmo Boost Social-Emotional Learning?

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

(Market Brief) - One of the biggest companies in the school market, McGraw-Hill Education, has forged an arrangement with the creator of Sesame Street to deliver social-emotional learning and literacy content to pre-kindergarten and elementary school students.

The deal, announced this week, will integrate videos and lessons from Sesame Workshop within McGraw-Hill Education’s Wonders literacy program.

McGraw-Hill officials say the pre-K curriculum is under development, and the K-5 resources will become available during the 2019-2020 academic year.

Sesame Workshop is a nonprofit media and education organization known for creating the iconic TV show Sesame Street, familiar to generations of children and parents. In a statement, McGraw-Hill and Sesame officials said the new deal “marks an unprecedented level of involvement for Sesame Workshop in the formal learning curriculum-development process.”

The new curriculum infused with Sesame videos and characters will be available only to families in districts that have purchased McGraw-Hill Education’s Wonders program, the latter company said.

Families in school districts that have the program will be able to use the at-home components at no cost, added McGraw-Hill.

Social-emotional learning has seen a huge surge in interest in the nation’s schools over the past few years, and private-sector companies are scrambling to create products to meet that demand.

Many K-12 administrators and advocates see the potential to improve students’ well-being and academic performance by cultivating students’ holistic skills in areas like self-management, communication, and resiliency.

A lot of questions remain, however, about the research surrounding specific classroom strategies and products, and the role that technology should play in schools’ assessments of students’ social-emotional needs.

“Collaborating with Sesame Workshop represents a unique opportunity to work with a pioneer in educational media and social-emotional learning content for young learners,” said Marty Lange, the senior vice president and chief product and operating officer for the school group of McGraw-Hill Education, in a joint statement released by the organizations.

The new arrangement holds the potential for “improving learning outcomes and transforming the school-to-home learning experience,” he added.

Iconic Brand

Sesame Workshop has made previous business arrangements with commercial and nonprofit providers, such as Teachstone LLC and Success for All, among others.

The organization’s vice president and education publisher, Akimi Gibson, said in an e-mail to Education Week that the new deal offers the potential for Sesame Workshop to deliver its content to new audiences, in new formats.

“Throughout Sesame’s fifty-year history, we’ve used the power of media to help kids grow smarter, stronger, and kinder,” she said. “Bringing our proven content into the formal education space on such a large scale—together with an industry-leading partner—will help us extend that impact.”

The content will come to students and families in a variety of forms, in both English and Spanish. The organizations will deliver videos and lessons featuring familiar Sesame Street characters such as Big Bird, Elmo, and Cookie Monster, with content designed to connect literacy skills and social-emotional learning. There will be weekly newsletters for parents designed to help them forge at-home activities around the content, and teacher resources to help educators connect social-emotional learning to situations drawn from daily life.

While bringing valuable educational content to new audiences is always desirable, it remains to be seen if the resources delivered through the just-announced deal will meet that standard for quality, said Warren Buckleitner, the editor and founder of Children’s Technology Review.

Buckleitner said it was disappointing to see Sesame Workshop engage in commercial partnerships, which he fears erodes its nonprofit mission. He was also not convinced that business deals were bringing tangible benefits to the content delivered by Sesame Workshop to families, particularly if the resources are embedded in company platforms like McGraw-Hill Education’s.

It’s also fair to question the extent to which the partnership will result in either side producing a lot of new, truly innovative educational materials—or merely repackaged content, with slick marketing behind them, said Buckleitner, whose organization reviews interactive media and tech products for schools and parents.

“Is this any better than the stuff that was available 10 years ago?” Buckleitner asked. “At the end of the day, the kids don’t care about the commercial relationship. [What matters to them and their families] is the quality on the screen…It’s about quality, quality, quality.”

Sesame Workshop’s Gibson said that while the K-1 curriculum in the new agreement is curated from a library of existing resources, the instructional resources and parents’ supports are entirely new. Additionally, new student-facing multimedia content for grade 1 has been developed, she said.

She said partnerships like the McGraw-Hill Education deal are extensions “of our mission-driven, community-based work to reach the kids and families who need us most.”

The content is top quality based on the organization’s “whole child” curriculum, which is continually being improved through research and revision, Gibson added.

Our curriculum “puts kids first in everything we do,” Gibson said. “By putting our content and resources in the capable hands of educators and parents, we hope to spark valuable real-time interactions both in and outside of school.”


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More cities implement universal pre-K when state, national efforts fall short

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

(Education Dive) -  

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Are the Effects of State Pre-K Overrated?

Monday, July 23, 2018

(Education Week) - Getting children on a path where they start school healthy and ready to learn is a goal everyone can agree on. But two new reports—an analysis of state preschool programs and standardized test scores, and a detailed follow-up to a 2015 study of Tennessee’s pre-K program—offer cautions about embracing state-run prekindergarten. 

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Here are potential questions that could be on your November ballot in Colorado

Monday, July 23, 2018

(The Colorado Independent) - We already know the six big questions that will be on your ballot to answer in the fall, from lowering the required age for state lawmakers to removing language about slavery from the state Constitution.  

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States to line up for federal preschool grants

Monday, July 23, 2018

(Polotico) - STATES TO LINE UP FOR FEDERAL PRESCHOOL GRANTS: A federal grant program aimed at helping states boost their preschool offerings will make its debut next month — when states can begin vying for a piece of the $250 million pot.  

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Durango School District, Early Childhood Council to expand child care

Friday, July 20, 2018

(Durango Herald) - Few families can place kids 5 or younger in a learning center.  

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Circle of Education Program Offered by School Specialty Endorsed by CASEL

Thursday, July 19, 2018

(Business Insider)- Early Childhood Social-Emotional Learning Approach Given ‘Highest Quality’ Designation  

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Research Verifies Early Childhood Education Helps Kids Build Skills and Readiness for School

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

(Business Wire) - National Studies Show KinderCare Education Kindergartners are performing at First Grade Levels; Length of Time Spent in Early Childhood Education at KinderCare Education Positively Impacts Results

For nearly 50 years, KinderCare Education® (KCE) has provided high-quality early education and child care to hardworking families throughout the U.S. This approach to early education is paying off. The results from the TerraNova® and BRIGANCE® national studies confirm that KCE students are better prepared for school.

Children enrolled in a KCE kindergarten program are, on average, performing at first grade levels, consistently outperforming their peers in math and reading. And whether they are learning to crawl or learning their first words, KinderCare kids continue to achieve key developmental milestones more quickly, the longer they are enrolled in the organization’s early childhood education programs.

“We are proud of the TerraNova and BRIGANCE results that demonstrate that our curriculum and standards of educational excellence help children develop the confidence and the skills they need to be ready for elementary school—and beyond. When we invest in children, we invest in our future.”

The impact of quality early childhood education extends beyond childhood. As reported by the Brookings Institute, children with higher levels of school readiness at age five are generally more successful in grade school, are less likely to drop out of high school, and earn more as adults. A separate Brookings Institute report noted that in countries like the United States, getting a good education is one of the most promising routes to economic security.

“A child’s education has a direct effect on the child’s overall development into adulthood,” said Dr. Elanna Yalow, Chief Academic Officer, KinderCare Education. “We are proud of the TerraNova and BRIGANCE results that demonstrate that our curriculum and standards of educational excellence help children develop the confidence and the skills they need to be ready for elementary school—and beyond. When we invest in children, we invest in our future.”


A study using TerraNova Third Edition, a standardized assessment to measure reading and math skills in kindergartners, concluded that KinderCare kids are performing at first grade levels by March of their kindergarten year.

“Beyond teaching young children the developmental and social skills they need for general success, the TerraNova results prove that KinderCare Education helps students show up to kindergarten and first grade confident they have the academic skills needed to flourish,” said Wei-Li Chong, President of KinderCare Learning Centers and KinderCare Education at Work.


KCE used the BRIGANCE developmental screen to see how children are meeting developmental milestones for physical, language, academic / cognitive, social-emotional development and self-help skills. The BRIGANCE Early Childhood Screens III tool was used to assess children in KinderCare programs nationwide, and results found that KinderCare students see significant improvement in their developmental status after spending more time in KinderCare Centers and programs. Children with more than a year of enrollment in KinderCare programs are less than half as likely to be flagged for potential delays and are more likely to be developmentally advanced for their ages.

“Truly understanding a child’s development status is so important to parents and teachers in the early years of life,” said Chong. “With the helpful information from BRIGANCE, teachers can partner with families to help children achieve developmental milestones and customize their curriculum to the strengths and opportunities of each child.”

Open House

61% of U.S. households with children have two working parents, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which means making time to tour an early childhood education center during the center’s weekday business hours can be challenging for many families. To make finding great childcare easier for families, KinderCare is hosting a national Open House on Saturday, July 21, 2018, in select centers across the U.S. Families are invited to drop into their local center, meet the teachers, and learn more about KinderCare’s approach to quality education.

Families can learn more about KinderCare’s curriculum, and a list of participating Open House locations around the country by visiting KinderCare’s website at www.kindercare.com.

Assessment Methodology

The TerraNova, a standardized year-end assessment, was administered in March 2018 to 1,034 kindergarten students in 126 KinderCare Learning Centers and KinderCare At Work Centers throughout the U.S. The students were five years old at the time of the research.

The BRIGANCE Early Childhood Screens III, a standardized developmental screening tool, was used to assess 36,892 children (16,334 of whom were assessed in both the fall and spring seasons) in 407 centers and sites nationwide during the 2017-18 school year. Children ranged in age from 6 weeks to 7 years old.

About KinderCare Education®

KinderCare Education is an experience-based provider of early education and child care with more than 32,000 employees, including more than 27,600 teachers, serving 170,000 families every day, where they need us:

In neighborhoods with our KinderCare® Learning Centers that offer early childhood education and child care for children six weeks to 12 years old,

At work through KinderCare Education at Work™, family-focused benefits for employers including on-site and near-site early learning centers and backup care for last-minute child care, and

In local schools with our Champions® before and after-school programs.

KinderCare Education operates more than 1,300 early learning centers, more than 500 Champions sites, and is supported by a corporate team of nearly 500 headquarters employees based in Portland, Oregon. In 2018, KinderCare Education earned their second Gallup Great Workplace Award – one of only 39 companies worldwide to earn this award. To learn more, visit kc-education.com.


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