The commentary below was written for Boardhawk by two DPS students, Sydelle Buyungo and Houlaye Sy, who were part of the vision team in the Denver Education Vision Project. The Denver Education Vision Project was created based on the belief that there is work to be done to provide an equitable education for every young person in Denver. 

RootED Denver and the Open Systems Institute partnered with community members to create a vision for the future of education that would lead to more equitable outcomes through Denver’s public schools’ system. A design team of families, students and community members worked to map their experiences, name bright spots and pain points and set a shared vision for the future of education in Denver.

Read the full commentary here.

Achieving Excellence Academy had another great summer program in 2023, serving as a cultural immersion opportunity for students who have been historically underserved, with an emphasis on students of color.

“With ongoing community support, family involvement, and the dedication of educators, this program continues to provide a transformative educational experience, nurturing students’ sense of belonging, coalition building, and leadership skills,” Ashlea Skiles, the program director for the Achieving Excellence Academy, wrote for Boardhawk.

Watch the video below and read Ashlea’s story here:

McAuliffe Manual Middle School is the 9NEWS (KUSA) Cool School for April! Watch the news story about the school’s multi-intensive peer-to-peer program and how it helps students build lasting friendships. The peer-to-peer program serves about 230 students. The goal is to ease students’ fears about going to a new school.

“It’s nice because I know I’ll always have a friend who’s super kind to me and awesome,” sixth grader Josefiina Highland said about her classmate Jane Numbi.

On Denver’s Municipal Election Day, we’re proud to see that students at KIPP Colorado Public Schools‘ Northeast Denver Leadership Academy made their voices heard in this election. Watch the 9NEWS (KUSA) video HERE .

As part of the Beacon Network Schools‘ unique enrichments program, students at Grant Beacon Middle School took a trip to Centennial Airport to learn more about aircraft and engineering. Watch the FOX31 story HERE

“Over 20 years, and I’m still not done helping kids and helping families.” Ron Allen, Family Therapist and Social Emotional Specialist at Academy 360

Fox31 reporter Joshua Short visited Academy 360 in Montbello to learn more about the charter school’s approach to nurturing the whole child and providing culturally relevant education and wraparound services to students and families. 

Watch the full story of how Allen and Academy 360 are supporting students and families.

After Governor Jared Polis awarded RiseUp Community School with the Governor’s Bright Spot Award in late 2022, 9NEWS reporters Byron Reed and Courtney Yuen featured the alternative charter high school as the January “Cool School.” Watch the 9News feature here.

A pilot program at DSST schools aims to close literacy gaps through the efforts of reading interventionists who work closely with students.

Watch the full story on CBS, which originally aired on December 19, 2022

Wyatt Academy in Denver’s Cole neighborhood has partnered with Collaborative Healing Initiative Within Communities (CHIC) to meet the social and emotional needs of the school’s Black girls. 

Through the school’s partnership with CHIC, mentors meet with Wyatt’s girls to provide access to mental health services, and various health and wellness activities. 

Read the full story on page 14 of the Denver Urban Spectrum.

The Colorado State Board of Education voted unanimously this month to require the Adams 14 school district and University Prep—a charter school network with two Denver campuses—to resume and complete contract negotiations for a new University Prep school in Commerce City. 

The Adams 14 board of education—which approved University Prep’s new charter school application last year—rejected the school’s contract in October without public discussion or explanation. 

This came after nearly two dozen meetings and almost 50 hours of work facilitated by a third-party to develop a collaborative, fair and thorough contract between University Prep and the district. 

During the December state board meeting, the board denied an Adams 14 motion to dismiss the appeal hearing. During the subsequent appeal and in its unanimous vote, the board determined that the district’s action was not in the best interest of students, the school district or the community. The state board ordered Adams 14 to reconsider whether the contract should be approved.

Watch the news story from CBS4, which aired on December 15, 2022