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The Arts

This site provides a hub of Colorado Arts information and resources to support the academic achievement of all students in Colorado.

Content support through the Colorado Department of Education will address essential elements of a comprehensive district plan to offer standards based teaching and learning. Our intent is to:

  • provide tools and supports,
  • deliver clear, timely communication,
  • enhance collaboration between and among all stakeholders,
  • identify research-based approaches to curriculum development and teaching and learning,
  • promote professional development opportunities, and
  • align and integrate elements of CDE's Strategic Initiatives where appropriate.

We aim to provide tools for the empowerment of all stakeholders to actively participate in the process of implementing the Colorado Academic and English Language Proficiency Standards and transforming teaching and learning throughout the State of Colorado. This two-page document provides brief descriptions of the history, substance, and instructional shifts of the Colorado Academic Standards and their focus on all students, all standards.

Important Announcements


Arts Education eUpdate Summer 2014 - SPECIAL EDITION

Check out the special edition of Arts Education eUpdate for the Summer of 2014. It highlights a dozen new teacher authored instructional units, Dance Endorsement rules, and the National Core Arts Standards.
Posted: July 1, 2014

Reproducible Artwork for Colorado Classrooms: Colorado Map

An artistic rendering of the Colorado Map by Colorado teacher and artist Debbit Brooks is on display at CDE. A downloadable digital image is available for use in Colorado classrooms to connect Visual Arts, History, and Geography standards. 
Posted: June 2, 2014

Instructional Unit Samples - NOW AVAILABLE!

Colorado teacher-authored instructional units are on our website. Hundreds of teachers from 116 school districts participated in workshops for the creation of Colorado Academic Standards-based curriculum overviews and instructional units. 
Posted: April 1, 2014

Fast Facts: Arts Education

If you are new to Colorado or are just interested in learning about the overarching headlines regarding arts education, this one page reference sheet is a good place to begin! Use the navigation links on the right side to read even more about the exciting world of arts education in Colorado!
Posted: August 23, 2013


Colorado Department of Education's Response to the National Core Arts Standards - The final version of the National Core Arts Standards (NCAS) was released on June 4, 2014. 

PLC Bytes

Find more PLC Bytes here.

Arts e-Updates

The e-Updates are intended to be a monthly announcement sent directly to your inbox regarding arts education initiatives and opportunities.

Arts Education in Colorado: Guidebook and Resources

A comprehensive guide for high quality arts education programming to meet the demands of the Colorado Creative Economy is now available. 

Relevant Legislation

Arts Education for Workforce Development Act

This statute encourages all public schools to provide courses in performing and visual arts. Courses may include traditional arts classes, on-line study, internships, externships, mentor experiences, or independent study. Schools are encouraged to use innovative ways to deliver arts education, such as technology, software, and forming partnerships with other school districts, or community colleges. The statute also provides definitions for visual and performing arts in Colorado.


For website assistance in the arts, please contact Karol Gates.

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Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
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