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Meeting Highlights

School Spotlight

In a series of celebrations, our Board of Education heard from representatives of Academy District 20’s Home School Academy and Aspen Valley Campus.

Students and staff from Home School Academy shared updates, including anticipated growth to more than 600 students in the coming year. Students thereafter offered two rousing performances as part of their theatre learning and experiences.

Aspen Valley Campus staff and students shared plans for next year, as well as growth this year in the areas of literacy and supports for students with disabilities, including dyslexia. Three students with dyslexia spoke to their unique experiences of learning and growing with the help of focused programming and dedicated staff.

Career Academies and Portrait of a Graduate

Academy District 20 engaged this fall in the process of creating a district-wide Portrait of a Graduate. With the help of stakeholder engagement, the Portrait of a Graduate identifies the skills, dispositions, and competencies students need for success in their post-secondary life in addition to foundational academic achievement. A report to the Board of Education unveiled progress on the portrait project, as well as an update on this process and further steps to integrate it into school academic life.

To learn more about this project, please view the presentation here.

Salary and Benefits Information: Potential Changes to EL 2.7

With budget season upon Academy District 20, Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Cameron Smart and Deputy Superintendent and Chief Financial Officer Becky Allan presented preliminary plans to grow compensation for D20 staff. The plan includes an estimated six percent raise for staff, paired with D20 covering increases in benefits costs. The plan keeps D20 ahead of inflationary costs, and is driven by estimated increases in Per Pupil Revenue.

Discussion also ensued in a study session surrounding Board Governance Policy EL 2.7, which provides parameters around compensation for D20 leadership. Potential updates to EL 2.7 include measuring D20 against the geographical market for all positions, adding other competitive districts into the geographical market, modifying a measure of keeping staff pay within the top quartile of districts annually to being measured within a two-year reporting period, and other minor modifications.

Challenger Learning Center of Colorado Annual Update

In a report surrounding the Challenger Learning Center of Colorado’s (CLCC) partnership with D20, CLCC Chief Executive Officer Ron Bush shared updates on the 22-year partnership between CLCC and D20. Mr. Bush shared that over the past year, CLCC served more than 32,000 students, with 40% of those participating being D20 students.

The report also illuminated several new or existing programs, including a free family event on every second Saturday designed to give back to the community. Additionally, CLCC provided an update on funding from D20 provided to support a staff member dedicated to creating secondary-level programming. Mr. Bush shared that this program already yielded a new four-week summer camp designed for 8th through 10th grade students surrounding engineering disciplines.

Additionally, Mr. Bush shared the establishment of a new internship program employing two Village High School students who have had the opportunity this year to work with technology created by Lockheed Martin.

To learn more about the Challenger Learning Center, please click here.

Preliminary Revenue Assumptions for FY 2024-25

With the School Finance Act soon to be finalized by the Colorado State Legislature, Academy District 20 anticipates a per pupil revenue funding increase of 6.98%, or $702 per student. That change is estimated to net about $13.3 million in additional revenue for District-operated schools, after distributions to charter schools.

Any significant changes between now and May 9 will be communicated during the May budget proposal, and any adjusted revenues or expenditures will be reflected in a budgetary update in January of 2025.

Read the entire Revenue Assumption report by clicking this link.

Legislative Updates

More than 40 proposed bills related to education are under consideration or have already been passed by the Colorado State Legislature, and D20 General Counsel Tonya Thompson offered a tracker of those bills, alongside a deeper dive on bills like House Bill 24-1448, which may significantly alter the School Finance Act beginning in the 2025-2026 school year.

As of Thursday, 14 working days remained for representatives to work on this proposed legislation. To learn more about all 40 bills, please click on this link.