Who Is In Charge

Legislative calendar March 26-30

Here’s the calendar of education-related meetings in the legislature for March 26-30. Floor and committee agendas are subject to change during the week, and measures scheduled for the floor are frequently subject to delay.

Colorado state flag


10 a.m. – House final consideration

  • Senate Bill 12-040 – Technical measure on funding of higher ed maintenance
  • Senate Bill 12-045 – Higher ed reverse transfer bill

House preliminary consideration

  • House Bill 12-1080 – Adams State name change
  • Senate Bill 12-148 – Metro State name change
  • Senate Bill 12-057 – Qualifications of teachers of Native American languages
  • Senate bill 12-061 – Improvements in charter school application and authorization procedures

10 a.m. – Senate final consideration

  • Senate Bill 12-130 – Consolidation of state early childhood programs

Senate preliminary consideration

  • House Bill 12-1220 – Technical measure affecting CSU and CSU Global Campus
  • House Bill 12-1144 – Multiyear contracts for non-tenure track instructors

Upon floor adjournment – Joint Budget Committee, JBC hearing room

  • Final work on 2012-13 budget bill (meetings will continue through the week as necessary)

1:30 p.m. – House Education Committee, room 0112

  • House Bill 12-1324 – Colorado Mesa role and mission
  • House Bill 12-1043 – Creation of new concurrent enrollment program
  • Senate Bill 12-036 – Parent consent for school surveys
  • Senate Bill 12-067 – Non-profit requirement for charter school boards


9 a.m. – House preliminary consideration

  • House Bill 12-1240 – Cleanup of various CDE statutes
  • House Bill 12-1261 – Stipends for board certified teachers

9 a.m. – Senate preliminary consideration

  • Senate Bill 12-121 – Charters schools and the BEST program
  • Senate Bill 12-068 – Ban on use of trans fats in some Colorado schools


Upon floor adjournment – House Education Committee, room 0112

  • Senate Bill 12-145 – Cap on 2011-12 transfers from state school lands revenues
  • Senate Bill 12-51 – Suggested contracting procedures for school districts

Upon floor adjournment – Senate Education Committee, room 354

  • Senate Bill 12-106 – Powers of early colleges (action only)

1:30 p.m. – Senate State Affairs Committee, room 353

  • House Bill 12-1149 – Parent trigger proposal


1:30 p.m. – Senate Education Committee, room 354

  • Governor’s appointments to various boards
  • House Bill 12-1146 – Continuation of community college dropout recovery program
  • Senate Bill 12-160 – Membership changes in state parent advisory council

Use the Education Bill Tracker for links to bill texts and status information.


Aurora’s superintendent will get a contract extension

Aurora Public Schools Superintendent Rico Munn. (Photo by Andy Cross/The Denver Post)

The Aurora school board is offering superintendent Rico Munn a contract extension.

Marques Ivey, the school board president, made the announcement during Tuesday’s regular board meeting.

“The board of education believes we are headed in the right direction,” Ivey said. Munn can keep the district going in the right direction, he added.

The contract extension has not been approved yet. Munn said Tuesday night that it had been sent to his lawyer, but he had not had time to review it.

Munn took the leadership position in Aurora Public Schools in 2013. His current contract is set to expire at the end of June.

Munn indicated he intends to sign the new contract after he has time to review it. If he does so, district leaders expect the contract to be on the agenda of the board’s next meeting, April 3, for a first review, and then for a vote at the following meeting.

Details about the new offer, including the length of the extension or any salary increases, have not been made public.

Four of the seven members currently on the board were elected in November as part of a union-supported slate. Many voiced disapproval of some of the superintendent’s reform strategies such as his invitation to charter school network DSST to open in Aurora.

In their first major vote as a new board, the board also voted against the superintendent’s recommendation for the turnaround of an elementary school, signaling a disagreement with the district’s turnaround strategies.

But while several Aurora schools remain low performing, last year the district earned a high enough rating from the state to avoid a path toward state action.

cooling off

New York City charter leader Eva Moskowitz says Betsy DeVos is not ‘ready for prime time’

PHOTO: Chalkbeat
Success Academy CEO and founder Eva Moskowitz seemed to be cooling her support for U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

In New York City, Eva Moskowitz has been a lone voice of support for the controversial U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. But even Moskowitz appears to be cooling on the secretary following an embarrassing interview.

“I believe her heart is in the right place,” Moskowitz, founder and CEO of Success Academy, said of DeVos at an unrelated press conference. “But as the recent interviews indicate, I don’t believe she’s ready for primetime in terms of answering all of the complex questions that need to be answered on the topic of public education and choice.”

That is an apparent reference to DeVos’s roundly criticized appearance on 60 Minutes, which recently aired a 30-minute segment in which the secretary admits she hasn’t visited struggling schools in her tenure. Even advocates of school choice, DeVos’s signature issue, called her performance an “embarrassment,” and “Saturday Night Live” poked fun at her.  

Moskowitz’s comments are an about-face from when the education secretary was first appointed. While the rest of the New York City charter school community was mostly quiet after DeVos was tapped for the position, Moskowitz was the exception, tweeting that she was “thrilled.” She doubled-down on her support months later in an interview with Chalkbeat.

“I believe that education reform has to be a bipartisan issue,” she said.

During Monday’s press conference, which Success Academy officials called to push the city for more space for its growing network, Moskowitz also denied rumors, fueled by a tweet from AFT President Randi Weingarten, that Success officials had recently met with members of the Trump administration.

Shortly after the election, Moskowitz met with Trump amid speculation she was being considered for the education secretary position. This time around, she said it was “untrue” that any visits had taken place.

“You all know that a while back, I was asked to meet with the president-elect. I thought it was important to take his call,” she said. “I was troubled at the time by the Trump administration. I’m even more troubled now. And so, there has been no such meeting.”