Posted inColoradans, COVID, Education, News

Declining birth rates, coupled with COVID disruptions, are driving down enrollment in Colorado public schools

Student enrollment has continued declining across Colorado public schools, with the state counting about 1,200 fewer students in kindergarten through 12th grade this fall than last year, when enrollment in preschool through high school plunged by about 30,000 students. State officials largely attributed last year’s enrollment slump — which was the first of its kind […]

Posted inColoradans, COVID, Education, News

Thousands of families redshirted their preschoolers and kindergarteners. Will they swell Colorado schools next fall?

Alamosa School District classrooms are typically full, with about 200 kindergarteners each school year. But that number dropped to 142 this fall. Many of Colorado’s 178 school districts saw a similar enrollment dip. The kindergarten count statewide dropped 8.5% this school year, meaning that thousands of kids who were on track to start kindergarten this […]

Posted inColoradans, Education, News, Politics and Government

Struggle to afford kids, homes in Colorado could keep full-day kindergarten from busting education budget

The number of kids enrolled in kindergarten across Colorado appears to have declined this school year, even with Gov. Jared Polis’ ambitious push for free full-day kindergarten in every school district. Legislative budget forecasters expect that trend to continue, or that enrollment will remain flat, as birth rates decline and sky-high housing costs discourage young […]

Posted inEducation, Opinion, Opinion Columns

Opinion: Polis’ free all-day kindergarten lets parents re-enter the workforce. How can we help them?

In May, Gov. Jared Polis signed a bipartisan bill into law funding full-day kindergarten for Coloradan kids starting this fall — a transformational investment in our state’s future. When I heard the news, I naturally thought of how I felt when my daughter, Addison, reached kindergarten age. I learned that even though she was going […]

Posted inOpinion, Opinion Columns

Opinion: Did Colorado Democrats overreach, or were they right on target?

After a legislative session that delivered full-day kindergarten, lower costs for early childhood education, new steps toward paid leave and retirement security and stronger consumer protections, there’s a campaign trying to tell you these priorities are somehow alien ambitions for our state — that these community achievements are a far cry from what Coloradans want […]

Posted inEducation, News, Politics and Government

Colorado districts are preparing quickly for full-day kindergarten, potentially increasing costs

By Erica Meltzer, Chalkbeat Colorado Large Colorado school districts that collectively serve thousands of children in half-day kindergarten programs are preparing to switch to full-day programs this fall, potentially pushing up the cost of Gov. Jared Polis’ signature education initiative. Lawmakers have set aside $185 million — about 80 percent of what Polis requested — to pay […]

Posted inOpinion, Opinion Columns

Opinion: Colorado babies cry out for policy changes

Too many young children show up to kindergarten without the skills they need to continue learning. While Colorado has made tremendous investments in early childhood through programs like the Colorado Preschool Program, which helps prepare young children for success in school, the science is clear — we need to start even earlier. In fact, decades […]