Thursday, February 22, 2018

The State of Education in Colorado: Strengthening Rural Schools, Fighting Over Student Performance Measures, a Massive Funding Shortfall & More

The 74 is proud to partner with Axios and the Walton Family Foundation to present a special conversation about schools and state-level education policy with a trio of governors from across the political spectrum. “Raising the Bar: A Conversation on Education in America” (see details and RSVP here) will bring together Governors John Hickenlooper (D-Colorado), Roy Cooper (D–North Carolina) and Butch Otter (R-Idaho) to speak with Axios executive editor Mike Allen in Washington, D.C., on February 23. This is one of three articles we’ve produced to offer insights into the key education issues affecting their states:

As the 2018 midterm election approaches, time is running out for Gov. John Hickenlooper. Setting aside rumors of the Colorado Democrat’s 2020 presidential ambitions, Hickenlooper is term limited and, as such, has less than a year to accomplish some big goals.

That gives Hickenlooper a short window to work with lawmakers to solve some of the state’s most pressing educational issues. From education funding to school accountability, legislators in Denver have proposed more than a dozen bills this year that could affect Colorado schools, where about a third of eighth-grade students are proficient in math and reading.

The state of Colorado, and the city of Denver in particular, has long been a hot spot for contentious education reform debates, and 2018 promises to be no different. Sen. Michael Bennet, a former superintendent in Denver, and Rep. Jared Polis, a Democratic gubernatorial candidate and former state board of education member, could help drive the issue to the forefront.

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