Archive for the 'Preschool' Category

2nd 2014
Colorado K-12 Policy and Trends: Eddie’s Eight Emerging Questions for 2014

Posted under Courts & Edublogging & Innovation and Reform & Just For Fun & Online Schools & Parents & Preschool & Principals & School Board & School Choice & School Finance & State Legislature & Tax Credits & Teachers & Urban Schools

Unbelievably, another new year is already underway, and I’m left to ponder what kind of hopes it holds out for Colorado kids and families seeking the best educational opportunities and outcomes possible. While I recover from the blissful batch of toys, games, and goodies, it seems like a perfect time to ponder what might emerge out of the chaos in 2014: Continue Reading »

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21st 2013
Time to Bust Amendment 66 Myths

Posted under Denver & Education Politics & Innovation and Reform & Parents & Preschool & Public Charter Schools & School Finance & State Legislature & Suburban Schools

At least one popular television series has taken on the challenge of refuting widely held beliefs rooted in misinformation. While I certainly can’t promise you the same level of entertainment value, in the spirit of MythBusters I urge Coloradans to check out a brand-new podcast of my Education Policy Center friend Ben DeGrow on the Amy Oliver Show.

Listen to Ben debunk some of the myths behind Amendment 66, the billion-dollar-a-year statewide tax increase “for the kids.” You will learn how, contrary to claims made by prominent supporters: Continue Reading »


21st 2012
Independence Institute Shares Colorado’s Own Digital Learning Roadmap

Posted under Independence Institute & Innovation and Reform & Online Schools & Parents & Preschool & School Accountability & School Choice & School Finance & Teachers

Do you ever get lost, driving around a big city and missing your destination? Maybe you pass the same landmark two, three, or even four times, getting more frustrated along the way. Maybe your GPS is malfunctioning, or maybe you just wish you had a GPS! For me, the feeling comes as I search for the pirates’ buried stash of gold doubloons (okay, it’s really some of those chocolate candies wrapped in gold foil, but please play along). What makes it so much easier to find the treasure?

That’s right, a map. A treasure map. X marks the spot. Now it isn’t exactly the same, but today my Education Policy Center friends officially released “The Future of Colorado Digital Learning: Crafting a Policy Roadmap for Reform.” A quick read with some pretty graphics (thanks, Tracy!), it lays out the main policy changes that many of the state’s online education leaders see as important — including some of the important changes Center director Pam Benigno highlighted in an op-ed last fall.

From the media release sent out this morning: Continue Reading »

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20th 2009
Rocky Mountain Deaf School Seeking to Build on Special Record of Success

Posted under Denver & Elementary School & Independence Institute & Innovation and Reform & Middle School & Parents & Preschool & Public Charter Schools & School Choice & Teachers

Yesterday a couple of my Education Policy Center friends had the privilege of visiting a local charter school with a special program to serve a particular group of kids with special needs: Rocky Mountain Deaf School (RMDS).

RMDS is located in Jefferson County, but about half of its 61 students live in surrounding districts. That’s a sign of a school having success connecting with deaf and hearing-impaired kids and improving their learning horizons.

The RMDS vision statement highlights the clear focus and special status of the school:

As a high performing, innovative educational program for students who are deaf, we are deeply committed to providing a rigorous, standards-based curriculum. We prepare each deaf student to be literate, academically successful, and technologically competent. We provide a linguistically rich learning environment through the acquisition of American Sign Language and English both inside and outside the classroom.

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18th 2009
Universal Preschool Promises Like Harold Hill’s Shiny New Trombones

Posted under Early Childhood & Independence Institute & Parents & Preschool & Research

I was never really big into the whole preschool thing. My parents decided not to enroll me anywhere before kindergarten. So maybe I’m biased a little bit, but the piece “Does Universal Preschool Improve Learning? Lessons from Georgia and Oklahoma” by Lindsey Burke of the Heritage Foundation really shoots holes in many of the arguments for expanding early childhood education.

Apparently, the idea that universal preschool gives kids an accelerated start into improved learning just doesn’t bear out on any large scale. Especially when you look at the Sooner State (and I think you ought to look at it sooner rather than later):

More than a decade after offering students uni­versal preschool, neither Oklahoma nor Georgia has shown impressive progress in students’ academic achievement, as measured by the National Assess­ment of Educational Progress. In fact, in Oklahoma, fourth-grade reading test scores have declined since 1998 when the state first implemented universal preschool.

Say what? Well, I guess you shouldn’t be too surprised — if you’ve been following what I say for any length of time. Like several months ago, when I pointed out what the brilliant Krista Kafer said about the overblown promises of government preschool pushers. They may not be trying to sell us shiny trombones and gold-striped uniforms for a new boys’ band, like the famous fictional Professor Harold Hill, but the purveyors of universal preschool utopia will be at least as hard-pressed to deliver the goods.

If you find this topic really interesting, you may want to check out the new book Reroute the Preschool Juggernaut by Checker Finn.


3rd 2009
Outside Education Experts Help Point the Way to Get Colorado On Track

Posted under Denver & Grades and Standards & High School & Independence Institute & Innovation and Reform & Preschool & Public Charter Schools & Research & School Accountability & Urban Schools

Education policy is often as much art as it is science. But Colorado’s education policy still can benefit from the informed perspectives of non-Colorado experts.

Denver’s own Piton Foundation convened a panel of six national education experts who observe what Colorado has done in many reform areas, and asked for their honest assessments. The result is a brand new report Colorado’s 2008 Education Reforms: Will They Achieve the Colorado Promise? (PDF).

In today’s Denver Post, education writer Jeremy Meyer sums up the findings:

Six national education experts took a look at Colorado’s education landscape and found the state is on track in some areas but has a long way to go in others.

Continue Reading »

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16th 2008
Parents Can Now Find Private Schools on School Choice Website

Posted under Independence Institute & Parents & Preschool & Private Schools

My friends who run have made it even easier for my mom and dad and lots of other parents to find a good school for me and my friends. Now you can search for PK-12 non-public schools (private, religious, and independent schools not operated by the government). For each school you can find:

  • Address
  • Map of the area
  • Phone number
  • Web site (when available)
  • Grade levels served
  • Religious affiliation (if any)

Schools that only teach preschool and kindergarten are not listed, but you can find all of that information on this special page they created just for preschool.

Parents who can’t afford private school tuition may be able to get a scholarship for their kids through one of the private organizations listed here.

And don’t forget that you can also look for public schools near you, too.