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Friday Churn: The effectiveness awards


What’s churning:

The 2011 Commissioner’s Choice Awards have been announced by the Colorado Department of Education and the Colorado Legacy Foundation, honoring a dozen individuals, schools, programs and districts that have demonstrated effectiveness in 12 areas of student achievement and growth, teacher leadership, and educator preparation and induction.

Awards will be presented Feb. 8 at what’s billed as “the state’s first event celebrating effective educators that apply best practices and get results.”

A sampling of the winners:

  • Expanding Opportunity through Effective Leadership Award – Kevin Jones, Principal, Center High School in Center, for successful innovation with a historically underserved population.
  • Teacher Leadership Award – Cherry Hills Village Elementary School, Cherry Creek School District, for an innovative leadership model that empowers teachers to achieve consistent, sustained student growth.
  • Getting Results Award – Explore Elementary School, Mapleton School District, recognizing teams of teachers who have improved performance at a historically low-performing school.

See the full list of winners here, and get details of the awards ceremony. Speakers will include Gov. John Hickenlooper and Sir Ken Robinson, whose video “Changing Education Paradigms” is nearing the 3-million-hits mark on YouTube:

In case you missed it, the National Council on Teacher Quality on Thursday released its fourth annual State Teacher Policy Yearbook, which reviews state laws, rules and regulations governing the teaching profession. Last year, Colorado received a D+ but the 2010 Yearbook finds the state has made “significant” progress on teacher quality goals.

Read the press release here and click here for the 20-page report on Colorado.

What’s on tap:

The State Council for Educator Effectiveness meets from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the DPS’ Del Pueblo facility, 750 Galapago St., in Denver. Agenda

CANCELED – Aurora Public Schools board members will not be meeting at 1 p.m. at Hinkley High School, 1250 Chambers Road, to talk about their proposed new graduation requirements, due to a conflict in Superintendent John Barry’s schedule. The graduation requirements are scheduled for a vote on Tuesday, Feb. 1, though that could be delayed. Here’s a link to the board’s presentation on the proposed changes.

The State Board of Education meets from 2 to 4 p.m. to discuss pending legislation and possible board positions on bills. In addition to its regular meetings, the board meets monthly during the legislative session to discuss education legislation. The meeting will be in the boardroom at the Department of Education, 201 E. Colfax Ave.


The Adams 50 Westminster school board is hosting a community conversation about the direction of the district. Morning sessions will focus on the district’s nationally-watched Standards-Based Education reform, while an afternoon session is tailored to those interested in seeking a board seat this fall. It all starts at 8 a.m. at Westminster High School. More information.

Good reads from elsewhere: