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Tuesday churn: Vaccination opt out rates

What’s churning:

Some 7 percent of Colorado students are opted out of otherwise required vaccinations, according to an analysis by The Associated Press.

Opt-out rates vary by state. The highest exemption rate was Alaska, with 9 percent of students choosing not to receive shots. The lowest was Mississippi, with a rate of “essentially” 0 percent. Colorado’s exemption rate is 7 percent. The AP noted that exemption seekers are often middle-class, college-educated and white. There are exemption “hot spots” where alternative medicines are favored and others where “government-fearing libertarians” thrive, the analysis found. Read the full article here.

Gov. John Hickenlooper has announced a new entity called the Colorado Innovation Network to promote collaboration among government, business and higher education. With the acronym COIN, the network is designed “to stimulate economic growth, help create jobs and attract new businesses by supporting innovative business activities and establishing Colorado as the best state for business,” according to a news release from the governor’s office.

The governor tapped Ajay Menon as the state’s first Chief Innovation Officer. Menon is Dean of the College of Business at Colorado State University He will volunteer 20 hours a week for the state in addition his fulltime job at CSU.

“The Colorado Innovation Network is a roadmap for making Colorado the best state for innovation and where every road must lead to new jobs,” Hickenlooper said. “We’ll work statewide with industry leaders to build a business environment which promotes innovative practices, creates jobs and grows our economy.”

The Colorado Innovation Network’s objectives are to build a business environment to foster innovation; retain jobs and support growth in key industries; pursue capital for project funding; establish Colorado’s reputation as the most innovative state; create a workforce with the right talent and job skills; and develop innovation-oriented performance metrics to demonstrate COIN’s economic growth impact. Read the full release here.

Good read from elsewhere:

The National Math and Science Initiative’s Advanced Placement program expanded to Colorado with support from the Colorado Legacy Foundation. The idea of the program was to help lower-income students, particularly Hispanics and African-Americans, pass challenging Advanced Placement tests and, ultimately, improve college readiness in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Initially, Race to the Top (federal) money was envisioned as the source of funds to help with the incentives for teachers, but that fell through when Colorado’s bid for the federal grant wasn’t accepted. Results appear mixed at the outset among the seven schools in the Colorado pilot. Full article here.

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