Opinion Editorials

Union Flailing against Improved Student Outcomes, Empowered Teachers

The thousands of delegates who gathered in Denver last week for National Education Association’s annual Representative Assembly felt more than just the summer heat. A continuing loss of members and some major rebukes from the courts has kept on the pressure. Still, the nation’s largest teachers union refuses to change its tune. Rather than police the profession and respect individual teacher rights, the politically powerful NEA is trying to change the subject.

Let’s Stop Shortchanging Colorado’s Charter Schools

Parents who choose a charter school are learning their children most likely are being shortchanged. While recent moves in Colorado would make progress toward evening up funds for charters, the quest for equity still has a long way to go.

A Step Backward on School Transparency

The Denver Post’s editorial concluded that the adoption of House Bill 1292 would make Colorado “a national leader in transparency” for public education. It got the story mostly right.

School Boards Push Teacher Accountability

Union leaders are actively challenging school principals’ newfound authority to keep the worst teachers out of their classrooms. The state legislative majority has shrunk from the chance to reward the best teachers. But some local school boards have begun to take the reins of reform.
Research shows teachers who get the most out of students can [...]

Education Spending Transparency Doesn’t Require Massive Tax Hike

Colorado potentially faces a wasted opportunity in undertaking a push for greater school financial transparency. If state leaders talk up transparency as a new project and in vague terms, then they may miss the benefit of lessons already learned and fail to create a genuinely useful online tool.
Part of Amendment 66’s billion-dollar promise was the [...]

Tax Hike Won’t Deliver on its Promise

Many Coloradans share a strong commitment to improving students’ educational opportunities and outcomes. However, Amendment 66 offers little hope of getting us there.

Forward-Thinking School Reforms Popular in DougCo

As Douglas County leaders continue charting the nation’s boldest course for local education innovation, political foes have taken the fight to a different front. Charges against the reform-minded school board fail in the light of truth but have the chance to catch on with many voters.

The Rest of the Story on School Funding, Minorities

Recent reporting that appeared in The Gazette insists Colorado racial minorities are harmed by less school funding than many other states receive. However, the I-News Network’s selective peek at the facts misleads readers and distracts them from real promising solutions.

Let’s Pay Teachers to Be Effective, Too

Colorado is one key step closer to distinguishing teachers who effectively help students learn from those who don’t. But we certainly haven’t overcome every obstacle to delivering top-notch instruction.The same effectiveness measures that will be used to evaluate and make tenure-related decisions ought to factor significantly into how principals and instructors are paid. This logical leap forward from rewarding educators based on years of service and academic credentials can be enhanced further by paying more for harder job and school assignments.

Lobato Judge’s Anti-Constitutional Opinion is Politics, Not Law

In a 2001 interview, a little known state senator and law school professor from Illinois cautioned that courts are “poorly equipped” for making public policy. Pointing to problems with the legitimacy and ability of courts particularly in the field of education, he advised seeking change through politics rather than litigation. Sadly, both concerns of Barack Obama were exemplified in a Colorado state court decision last December.