Public Education

Great Ed and the Colorado Council of Churches will host a free webinar on the Year of the Student on January 31, 2013 at 10:00am. To register click on

Enable every Colorado student – preschool through post-secondary education, and regardless of socio-economic status, ethnicity, or zip code – to learn to high standards, to become well-rounded, life-long learners and citizens and to develop the skills necessary to compete in the 21st century workforce. That is one of the principles around which over 20 organizations have organized to support public education as a priority in Colorado. CCC is an active partner in the coalition known as Great Education COLORADO. To learn more about these efforts and how you can assist, click here. The following is a recent press release from the Year of the Student Coalition of which the Colorado Council of Churches is an active participant.


Broad coalition of organizations and individuals hail and amplify
voters’ unequivocal message to leaders: “Support Education.”


DENVER – Inspired by the combination of overwhelming voter support for local school funding measures and the first proposed state budget in four years that doesn’t slash education, the “2013: Year of the Student” Coalition today announced its effort to continue this momentum into the 2013 legislative session.


The Coalition delivered a letter to each legislator on behalf of more than 110 endorsing organization and several thousand individuals, calling on state leaders to seize this unique opportunity to create a new vision for how Colorado funds our schools, colleges and universities and offering their support to those who step up to this historic and critical challenge.


Noting that Colorado students don’t get “do-overs,” the Coalition wrote:


It is critical that the legislature captures and harnesses the momentum of these two developments – an expanding economy and widespread support for better education investment.  The General Assembly is now uniquely positioned to pursue a higher, long-term goal: creating a vision for the education system we want for our students and establishing a solid plan to get us there.


We write on behalf of organizations that represent more than 120,000 Coloradans, as well as thousands of individuals, who have endorsed the 2013: Year of the Student Project and who offer their support for your efforts to create a system of education finance that makes it possible for every student to succeed. . . .


Our coalition offers its help and support to enable you to undertake the difficult but critical work of moving Colorado toward a 21st century education funding system that puts our students and state on the path to recovery, competitiveness and sustained economic growth.


On election day, Colorado voters passed 14 of 16 proposed local school district mill levy increases to prevent further cuts, as well as 20 of 22 proposed capital construction issues, sending a clear message of support for schools, students and the resources necessary to ensure their success. More recently, TBD Colorado, in recommendations released yesterday, acknowledged the need to match additional resources with education reforms and accountability measures for the success of all Colorado students.


“Coloradans clearly demonstrated their will to support schools and children last week when they voted for local measures to stem the bleeding from four years of devastating cuts to schools,” noted Lisa Weil, Policy Director of Great Education Colorado, a member of the 2013: Year of the Student coalition.  “We hope that legislators in 2013 not only hear the voters’ message, but also the message from organizations, school boards, the faith community and businesspeople all over Colorado: There has never been a better and more important time to create a vision for the kind of Colorado we want and to plot a course for achieving it.


“A quality education is something that every child needs, deserves and requires,” commented Katie Facchinello, Director of Every Child Matters Colorado, another coalition member. “For 215,000 children living in poverty and nearly 12,000 foster children in Colorado, the public education we provide is the only avenue to a brighter future. We worked hard to inspire voters to consider children’s issues during this election and now we’re ready to help every legislator, returning and new, to improve the lives hundreds of thousands of children today and for generations to come,” she continued.


“Now is the time to be innovative and create an education system that meets the needs of the workforce we’ll be hiring in the future” said Aurora Chamber of Commerce President Kevin Hougen. “I’m encouraging our members and all business owners in Colorado to reach out during this next legislative session and to support state leaders who will work toward an educational finance system that matches reforms with resources necessary to ensure that every student is successful.” The Aurora Chamber endorsed the Project in August of this year.


The 2013: Year of the Student movement, which was launched in June of 2012 with a student-run press conference at the Colorado State Capitol, has grown to over 5,000 individuals and over 110 organizations calling on the General Assembly to use the 2013 legislative session to “create and find funding for a P-20 education finance system that matches reforms, mandates and accountability measures with the resources necessary to ensure that every student is successful.”  For more information, visit the Coalition website