Difference between revisions of "Public education in Colorado"

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===Enrollments by region type===
 
===Enrollments by region type===
 
A plurality of students in Colorado attend city schools. More than 65 percent of the state's students attend city or suburban schools, compared to approximately 35 percent who attend rural or town schools.
 
A plurality of students in Colorado attend city schools. More than 65 percent of the state's students attend city or suburban schools, compared to approximately 35 percent who attend rural or town schools.
 
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::''See also: [[Student distribution by region type in the U.S.]]''
 
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! colspan="8" align="center" style="background-color:#008000; color: white;" | Student distribution by region type, 2011 - 2012 (as percents)
 
! colspan="8" align="center" style="background-color:#008000; color: white;" | Student distribution by region type, 2011 - 2012 (as percents)

Revision as of 12:57, 11 June 2014

K-12 Education in Colorado
Flag of Colorado.png
Education facts
State Superintendent: Robert Hammond
Number of students: 854,265[1]
Number of teachers: 48,078
Teacher/pupil ratio: 1:17.8
Number of school districts: 259
Number of schools: 1,813
Graduation rate: 75%[2]
Per-pupil spending: $8,724[3]
See also
Colorado Department of Education
Colorado school districts
List of school districts in Colorado
Colorado
School boards portal
Policypedia
Education policy logo.jpg
Education policy project
Public education in the United States
Public education in Colorado
Glossary of education terms
The Colorado public school system (prekindergarten-grade 12) operates within districts governed by locally elected school boards and superintendents. In 2012 Colorado had 854,265 students enrolled in a total of 1,813 schools in 259 school districts. There were 48,078 teachers in the public schools, or roughly one teacher for every 18 students, which is greater than the national average of 1:16. There is roughly one administrator for every 302 students, which is greater than the national average of one administrator for every 295 students.[4] On average Colorado spent $8,724 per pupil in 2011, which ranks it 42nd highest in the nation. The state's graduation rate was 75 percent in 2012.[5]

State agencies

School Board badge.png
State Education Departments

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See also
Colorado Commissioner of Education
Colorado school districts
List of school districts in Colorado
Public education in Colorado
School board elections portal
The mission statement of the Colorado Department of Education reads:[6]
The mission of the Colorado Department of Education is to ensure that all students are prepared for success in society, work, and life by providing excellent leadership, service, and support to schools, districts, and communities across the state.[7]

The Commissioner of Education the Department of Education's executive officer. The Commissioner of Education is appointed by the Colorado State Board of Education. Robert Hammond currently serves in this role.[8]

The Colorado Board of Education is "charged by the Colorado Constitution with the general supervision of the public schools." The board's seven members are elected from each of the state's congressional districts. The Commissioner of Education serves as a non-voting member of the board.[9]

Regional comparison

The following chart shows how Colorado compares to three neighboring states with respect to number of students, schools, the number of teachers per pupil, and the number of administrators per pupil. Further comparisons between these states with respect to performance and financial information are given in other sections of this page. For a full comparison of these statistics for all 50 states and the District of Columbia go to the following pages:

See also: General comparison table for education statistics in the 50 states
See also: Education spending per pupil in all 50 states
Regional comparison
State Schools Districts Students Teachers Teacher/pupil ratio Administrator/pupil ratio Per pupil spending
Colorado 1,813 259 854,265 48,078 17.8 301.9 $8,724
New Mexico 866 135 337,225 21,957 15.4 253.4 $9,070
Utah 1,020 126 598,832 25,970 23.1 450.2 $6,212
Wyoming 354 61 90,099 7,847 11.5 248.3 $15,849
United States 98,328 17,992 49,521,669 3,103,263 16 295.2 $10,994
Sources: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD), "State Nonfiscal Public Elementary/Secondary Education Survey", 2011-12 v.1a.

National Center for Education Statistics, Table 2. Number of operating public schools and districts, state enrollment, teacher and pupil/teacher ratio by state: School year 2011–12
U.S. Census Bureau, "Public Education Finances: 2011,Governments Division Reports," issued May 2013

Demographics

See also: Demographic information for all students in all 50 states

The following table displays the ethnic distribution of students in Colorado as reported in the Common Core of Data for 2011-2012.[10]

Demographic information for Colorado's K-12 public school system
Ethnicity Students State Percentage United States Percentage**
American Indian 7,143 0.84% 1.10%
Asian 26,522 3.10% 4.68%
African American 40,932 4.79% 15.68%
Hawaiian Nat./Pacific Isl. Students 1,817 0.21% 0.42%
Hispanic 272,490 31.90% 24.37%
White 479,288 56.11% 51.21%
Two or more 26,073 3.05% 2.54%
**Note: This is the percentage of all students in the United States that are reported to be of this ethnicity.

Enrollments by region type

A plurality of students in Colorado attend city schools. More than 65 percent of the state's students attend city or suburban schools, compared to approximately 35 percent who attend rural or town schools.

See also: Student distribution by region type in the U.S.
Student distribution by region type, 2011 - 2012 (as percents)
State City schools Suburban schools Town schools Rural schools
Colorado 33.3% 32.6% 10.3% 23.8%
New Mexico 32.6% 11.9% 27.4% 28.1%
Utah 16.5% 50.9% 12.9% 19.7%
Wyoming 22.8% 1.7% 42.3% 33.2%
U.S. average 28.9% 34% 11.6% 25.4%
Source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data (CCD)

Academic performance

Policypedia
Education policy logo.jpg
Education policy terms
Academic bankruptcyAcademic EarthAcademic performanceBlaine AmendmentCharter schoolsCommon CoreDropout rateNAEPProgressive educationRegulatory Adjusted Cohort Graduation RateSchool vouchersTeacher merit pay
See also

NAEP scores

The National Center for Education Statistics provides state-by-state data on student achievement levels in mathematics and reading in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Compared to three neighboring states (New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming), Colorado's fourth and eighth grade students fared the best in both mathematics and reading.[11]

Percent of students scoring at or above proficient, 2012-2013
Math - Grade 4 Math - Grade 8 Reading - Grade 4 Reading - Grade 8
Colorado 50 42 41 40
New Mexico 31 23 21 22
Utah 44 36 37 39
Wyoming 48 38 37 38
U.S. average 41 34 34 34
NAEP assessment data for all students 2012-2013

pChart

Graduation, ACT and SAT scores

The following table shows the graduation rates and average composite ACT and SAT scores for Colorado and surrounding states.[11][12][13]

Comparison table for graduation rates and test scores*
State Graduation rate, 2012 Average ACT Composite, 2012 Average SAT Composite, 2013
Percent Quintile ranking** Score Participation rate Score Participation rate
Colorado 75% Fourth 20.6 100% 1,721 14%
New Mexico 70% Fifth 19.9 75% 1,626 12%
Utah 80% Third 20.7 97% 1,684 6%
Wyoming 79% Third 20.3 100% 1,757 4%
U.S. average 80% 21.1 1,498
*Regulatory Adjusted Cohort Rate (except for Idaho, Kentucky, Oklahoma, which did not report “Regulatory Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate,” but instead used their own method of calculation).
**Graduation rates for states in the first quintile ranked in the top 20 percent nationally. Similarly, graduation rates for states in the fifth quintile ranked in the bottom 20 percent nationally.
Source: United States Department of Education, ED Data Express

Dropout rate

See also: Public high school dropout rates by state for a full comparison of dropout rates by group in all states

The high school event dropout rate indicates the proportion of students who were enrolled at some time during the school year and were expected to be enrolled in grades 9–12 in the following school year but were not enrolled by October 1 of the following school year. Students who have graduated, transferred to another school, died, moved to another country, or who are out of school due to illness are not considered dropouts. The average public high school event dropout rate for the United States remained constant at 3.3 percent for both SY 2010–11 and SY 2011–12. The event dropout rate for Colorado was higher than the national average at 5.1 percent in the 2010-2011 school year, and 4.9 percent in the 2011-2012 school year.[14]

Educational choice options

School districts in the state of Colorado are controlled locally. Therefore, local school districts have more flexibility regarding school choice. Some districts may differ from others.[15]

School choice options include:

  • Charter schools: In 2007-2008, the state of Colorado had approximately 151 public charter schools with about 53,000 students enrolled.[16][17]
  • Public school open enrollment: The state has two open enrollment policies: inter-district and intra-district. In other words, students are permitted to enroll in any school within their neighborhood school district or in any alternative district in the state.[16]
  • Online learning: There is a state-led online learning program. According to the state, as of 2009 the state-led program had a total of 18 online programs and approximately 10,500 students enrolled.[16]

Education funding and expenditures

See also: Colorado state budget
Breakdown of expenditures by function in FY 2012.
Source: National Association of State Budget Officers

According to the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO), the state spent approximately 25.3 percent of its fiscal year 2012 budget on elementary and secondary education. As a share of the budget, this is down 5.7 percentage points, or 18.4 percent, from fiscal year 2008, when the state spent 31.0 percent of its budget on elementary and secondary education.[18][19][20][21][22]

Comparison of financial figures for school systems
State Percent of budget (2012) Per pupil spending (2011) Revenue sources (2011)
Percent federal funds Percent state funds Percent local funds
Colorado 25.3% $8,724 14.56% 55.06% 30.37%
New Mexico 24.7% $9,070 5.14% 37.06% 57.8%
Utah 24.7% $6,212 15.34% 39.65% 45.01%
Wyoming 3.9% $15,849 8.79% 45.83% 45.38%
Sources:NASBO, "State Expenditure Report," Table 8: Elementary and Secondary Education Expenditures As a Percent of Total Expenditures
U.S. Census Bureau, "Public Education Finances: 2011,Governments Division Reports," issued May 2013

Revenue breakdowns

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, public school system revenues in Colorado totaled approximately $8.8 billion in fiscal year 2011. The table and chart below present further detail, including revenue sources, for Colorado and surrounding states.[23]

Revenues by source, FY 2011 (amounts in thousands)
Federal revenue State revenue Local revenue Total revenue
Colorado $979,904 $3,543,208 $4,245,132 $8,768,244
New Mexico $641,925 $2,390,635 $601,508 $3,634,068
Utah $519,547 $2,211,870 $1,589,706 $4,321,123
Wyoming $154,955 $878,979 $612,931 $1,646,865
U.S. total $74,943,767 $267,762,416 $264,550,594 $607,256,777
Public school revenues by source, FY 2011 (as percents)

pChart

Expenditure breakdowns

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, public school system expenditures in Colorado totaled approximately $8.7 billion in fiscal year 2011. The table and chart below present further detail, including expenditure types, for Colorado and surrounding states.[23]

Expenditures by type, FY 2011 (amounts in thousands)
Current expenditures** Capital outlay Other*** Total expenditures
Colorado $7,338,499 $836,045 $521,460 $8,696,004
New Mexico $3,045,075 $621,504 $66,091 $3,732,670
Utah $3,600,074 $693,458 $234,361 $4,527,893
Wyoming $1,397,339 $234,408 $10,504 $1,642,251
U.S. total $520,577,893 $52,984,139 $29,581,293 $603,143,325
**Funds spent operating local public schools and local education agencies, including such expenses as salaries for school personnel, student transportation, school books and materials, and energy costs, but excluding capital outlay, interest on school debt, payments to private schools, and payments to public charter schools.
***Includes payments to state and local governments, payments to private schools, interest on school system indebtedness, and nonelementary-secondary expenditures, such as adult education and community services expenditures.
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
Public school expenditures, FY 2011 (as percents)

pChart

Personnel salaries

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average national salary for classroom teachers in public elementary and secondary schools has declined by 1.3 percent from the 1999-2000 school year to the 2012-2013 school year. During the same period in Colorado, the average salary decreased by 4.4 percent.[24]

Estimated average salaries for teachers (in constant dollars**)
1999-2000 2009-2010 2011-2012 2012-2013 Percent difference
Colorado $52,153 $52,520 $49,865 $49,844 -4.4%
New Mexico $44,488 $49,378 $46,381 $46,573 4.7%
Utah $47,757 $48,980 $48,961 $49,393 3.4%
Wyoming $46,638 $59,628 $58,174 $57,920 24.2%
U.S. average $57,133 $58,925 $56,340 $56,383 -1.3%
**"Constant dollars based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), prepared by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, adjusted to a school-year basis. The CPI does not account for differences in inflation rates from state to state."

Organizations

Unions

In 2012 the Fordham Institute and Education Reform Now assessed the power and influence of state teacher unions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Their rankings were based on 37 different variables in five broad areas, including: resources and membership, involvement in politics, scope of bargaining, state policies and perceived influence. Colorado ranked 35th overall, or "weak," which was in the fourth of five tiers.[25]

The main unions related to the Colorado school system are the Colorado Education Association (CEA), an affiliate of the National Education Association (NEA), and the Colorado Federation of Teachers. CEA is the largest education association in the state. For the 2003 tax period CEA had: $10.5 million in total revenue, $10.1 million in total expenses and $7.9 million in total assets.[26] For the same period, the Colorado Federation of Teachers had: $213,403 in total revenue, $221,663 in total expenses and $157,369 in total assets.[27]

List of local Colorado school unions:[28]

Taxpayer-funded lobbying

See also: Colorado government sector lobbying

The main education government sector lobbying organization is the Colorado Association of School Boards. Below is a list of major Colorado education government sector lobbying organizations:

Transparency

On June 4, 2009, Governor Ritter signed Colorado House Bill 1288, the "Colorado Taxpayer Transparency Act," into law. HB 1288 mandated the creation of an online spending database by no later than January 2010.[29]

Education ballot measures

See also: Education on the ballot and List of Colorado ballot measures

Ballotpedia staff have tracked 31 statewide ballot measures relating to education.

  1. Colorado Control of Public Schools, Measure 15 (1912)
  2. Colorado Department of Education Reorganization, Measure 1 (1948)
  3. Colorado Education Funding and TABOR Rebates, Initiative 59 (2008)
  4. Colorado Education Standards and Funding Reform, Initiative 6 (1992)
  5. Colorado Elected State Board of Education, Measure 2 (1930)
  6. Colorado Elected State Board of Education, Measure 6 (1928)
  7. Colorado English Language Education, Initiative 31 (2002)
  8. Colorado Examination of Teachers, Measure 21 (1912)
  9. Colorado Excess State Revenues for Math and Science Grants, Referendum F (2000)
  10. Colorado Funding for Public Schools, Initiative 23 (2000)
  11. Colorado Horse Racetrack Limited Gaming Proceeds for K-12 Education, Amendment 68 (2014)
  12. Colorado Income Tax Credit for Education, Initiative 17 (1998)
  13. Colorado Institutions of Higher Education, Referendum 5 (1910)
  14. Colorado Investing Public School Funds, Measure 7 (1916)
  15. Colorado Location and Control of Higher Education Institutions, Measure 7 (1922)
  16. Colorado Oil and Natural Gas Severance Taxes, Initiative 58 (2008)
  17. Colorado One-Mill Levy for State Education Institutions, Measure 7 (1920)
  18. Colorado Parental Rights, Initiative 17 (1996)
  19. Colorado Prohibit Bussing to Schools Based on Race, Measure 8 (1974)
  20. Colorado Required Distances from Schools in Certain Casino Gambling Jurisdictions Amendment (2014)
  21. Colorado School Board Open Meetings, Proposition 104 (2014)
  22. Colorado School District Spending Requirements, Initiative 39 (2006)
  23. Colorado School District Spending Requirements, Referendum J (2006)
  24. Colorado State Trust Lands, Initiative 16 (1996)
  25. Colorado Student Loan Program, Measure 2 (1972)
  26. Colorado Tax Increase for Education, Amendment 66 (2013)
  27. Colorado Tax Limits, Measure 12 (1972)
  28. Colorado Teachers' Summer Normal School, Measure 26 (1912)
  29. Colorado University of Colorado Board of Regents, Measure 4 (1972)
  30. Colorado Voting on County Superintendent of Schools, Measure 2 (1964)
  31. Colorado Vouchers for Education, Initiative 7 (1992)

Studies and reports

A 2009 study, Leaders and Laggards, conducted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for a Competitive Workplace, Frederick M. Hess of the conservative American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, and the Center for American Progress, gave Colorado: a "B" for academic achievement; a "D" for truth in advertising about student proficiency; a "D" for rigor of standards; a "B" for post-secondary and workforce readiness; a "B" for its teacher workforce policies; and a "C" for data quality.[30]

State Budget Solutions education study

See also: State spending on education v. academic performance (2012)

State Budget Solutions examined national trends in education from 2009 to 2011, including state-by-state analysis of education spending, graduation rates, and average ACT scores. The study showed that the states which spent the most did not have the highest average ACT test scores, nor did they have the highest average graduation rates. A summary of the study is available here. The full report can be accessed here.

See also

External links

Additional reading

References

  1. National Center for Education Statistics, "Table 2. Number of operating public schools and districts, state enrollment, teacher and pupil/teacher ratio by state: School year 2011–12," accessed March 18, 2014
  2. ED Data Express, "State Tables Report," accessed March 17, 2014 The site includes this disclaimer: "States converted to an adjusted cohort graduation rate [starting in the 2010-2011 school year], which may or may not be the same as the calculation they used in prior years. Due to the potential differences, caution should be used when comparing graduation rates across states."
  3. United States Census Bureau, "Public Education Finances: 2011," accessed March 18, 2014
  4. United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Common Core of Data (CCD); Table 2.—Number of operating public schools and districts, state enrollment, teacher and pupil/teacher ratio by state: School year 2011-12," accessed May 12, 2014
  5. United States Department of Education, "ED Data Express," accessed May 12, 2014
  6. Colorado Department of Education, "About the Colorado Department of Education," accessed May 14, 2014
  7. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  8. Colorado Department of Education, "Commissioner of Education," accessed May 14, 2014
  9. Colorado Department of Education, "Board Member Profiles," accessed May 14, 2014
  10. United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Common Core of Data (CCD), State Nonfiscal Public Elementary/Secondary Education Survey, 2011-2012," accessed May 7, 2014
  11. 11.0 11.1 United States Department of Education, ED Data Express, "State Tables," accessed May 13, 2014
  12. ACT, "2012 ACT National and State Scores," accessed May 13, 2014
  13. Commonwealth Foundation, "SAT Scores by State 2013," October 10, 2013
  14. United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Common Core of Data (CCD), State Dropout and Graduation Rate Data File, School Year 2010-11, Provision Version 1a and School Year 2011-12, Preliminary Version 1a," accessed May 13, 2014
  15. Colorado Department of Education, "Other School Options in Colorado," accessed October 13, 2009
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 The Heritage Foundation, "School Choice in Colorado," accessed October 13, 2009
  17. Colorado Department of Education, "Colorado Charter Schools," accessed October 13, 2009
  18. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2011-2013," accessed February 21, 2014
  19. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2009-2011," accessed February 24, 2014
  20. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditures Report, 2010-2012," accessed February 24, 2014
  21. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2009," accessed February 24, 2014
  22. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2008," accessed February 24, 2014
  23. 23.0 23.1 United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Revenues and Expenditures for Public Elementary and Secondary School Districts: School Year 2010–11," accessed May 13, 2014
  24. United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Table 211.60. Estimated average annual salary of teachers in public elementary and secondary schools, by state: Selected years, 1969-70 through 2012-13," accessed May 13, 2014
  25. Thomas E Fordham Institute, " How Strong Are U.S. Teacher Unions? A State-By-State Comparison," October 29, 2012
  26. Center for Union Facts, "Colorado Education Association," accessed October 1, 2009
  27. Center for Union Facts, "Colorado Federation of Teachers," accessed October 1, 2009
  28. Center for Union Facts, "Colorado teachers unions," accessed October 1, 2009
  29. State of Colorado, "HOUSE BILL 09-1288 - Colorado Transparency Act," accessed October 13, 2009
  30. U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute, "Colorado Education Report Card," accessed November 16, 2009