Colorado

Rise & Shine: The secret to this Denver school’s success? Stability

Good morning.

Welcome to the Bomb Cyclone edition of Rise & Shine. Word on the street is that we're about to get hit with a major storm, and most Denver metro area schools canceled preemptively. Most state offices are closed, and the State Board of Education, which was set to make a final decision on the external manager for the Adams 14 district, canceled Wednesday's meeting.

Meanwhile Colorado Public Radio made a handy thing that will tell you if/when the pressure drops enough to make this storm officially a bomb cyclone. Keep refreshing.

In the education world, there's a lot of money and energy invested in trying to figure out which interventions will make the most difference for students. Is it rigorous teacher evaluation? Strong curriculum? Wraparound supports?

At one southwest Denver school that has been recognized year after year for its students' strong growth scores, educators say they aren't doing anything amazing or unusual. “It’s the power of consistency and the power of doing the small things well," the principal said. Melanie has that story.

Keep reading for that and more education news from around the state.

And stay warm and dry!

— Erica Meltzer, bureau chief


Rise & Shine is Chalkbeat’s morning digest of education news. Subscribe to have it delivered to your inbox.


HIGH GROWTH Students at Knapp Elementary, nearly all from low-income families and more than half of them learning English as a second language, post some of the highest growth scores in Denver Public Schools, an achievement that has earned the school state recognition six years in a row. Principal Shane Knight said stability is the secret to Knapp’s success. Chalkbeat

SNOW DAY A lot of Colorado districts canceled school Tuesday afternoon in anticipation of a major winter storm Wednesday. Denver Post

School districts take a variety of approaches to the decision to close schools. 9 News

CHARACTER COUNTS Milliken Middle School is a finalist for the Middle School Kindness Challenge sponsored by Stand for Children. The award goes to schools that improve school climate and create safe and supportive environments. Greeley Tribune

STUDENT VOICE Thousands of students in the Poudre and Thompson school districts plan to leave school Friday afternoon in the Northern Colorado Climate Strike to urge action to stop climate change. “It puts more pressure on our government to make a positive change,” one student said. Coloradoan

TURNAROUND The Pueblo 60 board has chosen MGT Consulting in collaboration with the University of Virginia to help improve performance at two struggling middle schools. The State Board of Education still needs to sign off on the decision. Chieftain

TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES There’s a lot of misinformation circulating about the comprehensive sex education bill making its way through the Colorado legislature. 5280

FACILITIES NEEDS Sagging floors. Rodent infestations. Broken furniture. So many entrances the school is hard to secure. Student journalists in Grand Junction took a hard look at the condition of their school, and they didn’t like what they saw. “We need a new school, plain and simple,” editors wrote. Orange and Black Newsmagazine

MEET THE FINALISTS Teacher of the Year has become an increasingly prominent — and political — position, with the 2016 winner now serving in Congress and the 2017 winner confronting President Trump about immigration policy. At least one of this year’s finalists sees that trend continuing. The 74