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Monday Churn: Back to work

What’s on tap:

Things slowly get rolling again this week after an extended holiday for many in Colorado education and state government.

On Thursday the Joint Budget Committee will be briefed on the Department of Education’s 2012-13 budget by staff analyst Craig Harper.

The panel already has been briefed on 2012-13 state aid to schools (see story) and Thursday’s 1:30 p.m. meeting will be focused on other areas of CDE’s budget.

Of particular interest is the $25.9 million the department wants for development of new state tests but which Gov. John Hickenlooper did not include in his overall state budget proposal. Education Commissioner Robert Hammond has said he’ll make a pitch for the money to the JBC.

CDE officials don’t get to speak to the committee until a Dec. 16 hearing, but it will be interesting to see what Harper’s briefing paper says about test costs.

Thursday also is the deadline for campaign committees to file their post-election contribution and spending reports.

The JBC will have a briefing at 9 a.m. Friday on Department of Higher Education spending for 2012-13. The governor is proposing a 5.7 percent cut in college spending, and he and higher ed brass already have agreed on campus-by-campus allocation of the reduced funding (see story).

Of more interest may be committee reaction to Hickenlooper’s proposed cuts in state financial aid.

Also Friday the Colorado Commission on Higher Education meets with campus presidents and governing board chairs to discuss preliminary goals for a new higher education master plan. It will be the first meeting of those groups in four years.

Crafting of a new master plan is required by recent legislation that sets up a performance funding system for state colleges and universities. That system wouldn’t kick for several years and not until after base state funding of higher ed is restored to a set level.

The session runs 1-5 p.m. at the Auraria PE/Events Center. The commission will have its regular monthly meeting from 10 a.m. to noon.

Good reads from elsewhere:

Online education advocates around the country are feeling under siege. A recent EdNews series raised questions about operations in regulation in our state. Now our partners at Education Week round up what’s happening elsewhere around the nation. Story here

The leaders of Monarch Montessori say they will continue with their push to establish a charter school in far northeast Denver through appeal to the state or re-applying next year. Story here

Garfield School District 16 is seeking to fill three of five seats on the board of education. The three incumbents, who all chose not to run for re-election, are serving on the board until replacements can be appointed. Story here

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