Blogs

Dougco Decision Brings Good News and Bad

By now, my faithful readers should be familiar with Douglas County School District’s embattled first-of-its-kind local voucher program, the Choice Scholarship Program (CSP). I was super excited about an amicus brief written by my friends at the Friedman Foundation and the Independence Institute way back in August of last year, and could barely contain myself during [...]

Jeffco School Board Recall Underway: What’s Really Going On?

It’s Friday afternoon in the summertime. I should be kicking back and enjoying the great outdoors, maybe playing in the pool or racing my remote-controlled cars. But no. Teachers union leaders hide behind a group of parents to file a recall petition against the three conservative Jeffco school board members: One of the stated reasons [...]

Big Bucks or Big Misconception? Report Sheds Light on Philanthropy in Charter Sector

Last Friday, we celebrated votes in two of my favorite districts, Jeffco and Thompson, to provide more equitable funding to charter school students. In that post, I briefly mentioned that there were some inaccurate anti-equitability arguments floating around before the board votes. We’re going to tackle one of those misconceptions today: The argument that charters [...]

Thompson and Jeffco Stand up for Fair Charter Funding

Many school districts do not share the additional dollars they get from voter-approved property tax increases with charter schools. Traditional public schools often have access to a good deal more money than charters. But two Colorado districts recently passed budgets that reflect more equitable funding for charter school students. Jefferson County completed its journey toward equalization, and Thompson took the first step. Reform majorities on both school boards drove the move toward funding equalization. Other districts take note: This is how you do it.

Performance-Based Learning, Strategic Compensation Keep My Eyes on Mesa 51

When it comes to K-12 education, I tell you a lot about what’s going on in the Denver area and along the Front Range. That’s where most people in our state live. But Colorado is a big place, and it’s good for me to keep expanding my horizons. One of those places is called the [...]

Great Minds Assemble to Promote ESA Success for Nevada Students

A couple weeks ago I giddily danced to the national news of this year’s growing momentum behind educational choice. Foremost among recent developments is Nevada’s breakthrough adoption of a nearly universal ESA program in Nevada. This snippet from Leslie Hiner’s new column in The Hill puts the new Education Savings Account in perspective: During the [...]

Fact Checking the Fact Checkers: Counting Local Teachers Unions in Colorado

We’ve spent an awful lot of time recently debunking (or at least very critically reviewing) stuff. We beat up a bologna study on school choice, poked holes in a school finance study that made some weird assumptions, poked some more holes in even more school finance reports,  and took a very close look at the [...]

State Board Resignation Raises Eyebrows

I wanted to do a fun Friday story today. I really did. But duty calls, and we need to talk about something important in Colorado education: The resignation of Chairwoman Marcia Neal from the Colorado State Board of Education. Many of you are already familiar with Marcia, but here’s a quick bio for those of [...]

Waiting for Dougco Choice Ruling? Florida, Kansas Serve Up Good News

Education policy and the courts: Usually not a match made in heaven. Though often there’s a very good reason to pay close attention. Like six months ago, when I proclaimed my excitement that the landmark Douglas County school choice case finally reached a hearing at the Colorado Supreme Court. Sorry if I got anybody’s hopes [...]

Exodus or Exaggeration? A Look at Colorado’s Teacher Turnover Rates

“Mass exodus” sounds scary, doesn’t it? It conjures images of sad, disheveled refugees limping away from burning villages with smoke billowing in the background. That image is probably exactly what anti-reformers in Colorado have been trying to convey as they loudly sound the alarm that teachers are leaving education in droves while malicious reformers try [...]