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CDE Update

CDE Update Special Edition

Special Edition of the CDE Update

Read the latest - March 30

Past Special Editions:

CDE Update

About the CDE Update

Welcome to the CDE Update! Each month, this publication will show you what is happening in key priority areas at CDE and include details on implementation, milestones, deadlines and resources.

This online format allows you to view everything or filter by category and date and will be your go-to source for all Update information.

March 2020

Accountability, Performance and Support

What's Happening Now

TLCC Survey results coming this spring

Thank you to all educators, schools and districts that participated in the Teaching and Learning Conditions Colorado (TLCC) Survey. Schools that met the 50% participation rate and had at least five respondents will receive their results on the TLCC Survey website this spring. Additional information about the survey release, as well as interpretation resources and training opportunities will be available soon and will be announced through CDE's communication channels, including The Scoop weekly e-newsletter. 

UIP winter review process

CDE has reviewed and provided feedback on nearly 200 Unified Improvement Plans (UIPs) for districts and schools on Performance Watch (i.e., Priority Improvement, Turnaround, or Improvement and Performance and On Watch). Feedback based on the UIP Quality Criteria Rubric, including program specific requirements, will be made available through the UIP Online System in the Collaboration Tab of the UIP as it becomes available this month.

UIP training and technical assistance

CDE is available to support schools and districts on the performance frameworks and UIPs through training and professional development. To schedule an in-person training session, contact Dan Jorgensen at or 303-866-6763 or Erin Loften at or 303-866-6642.

AEC status applications

Alternative Education Campuses (AECs) reapplying for the 2020-21 school year and schools applying for AEC designation for the first time (those that notified CDE by Jan. 31) will have their pre-populated data uploaded to the Data Pipeline system automatically. The AEC renewal/application collection must be submitted through the Data Pipeline system. Data will be available in Data Pipeline on Wednesday, March 4. 

To gain access to this system, your district’s local area manager must grant you permissions for the AEC~LEAAPPROVER role. More details about the collection are available on the AEC Collections webpage. Reach out to B Sanders at or 303-866-2865 with questions.

What's on the Horizon

UIP submission dates

Every district and school must submit a revised/updated UIP no later than Wednesday, April 15. Districts and schools implementing a Performance plan and that are not On Watch may submit plans biennially.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

March 4: AEC renewal/application collection opens.

April 15: All school and district UIPs must be submitted to CDE for posting on SchoolView.

More Information

For more information, contact Lisa Medler, executive director of Accountability and Continuous Improvement, 303‐866‐6993, or visit


What's Happening Now

ACCESS for ELLs SBD review

Student Biographical Data (SBD) reviews provide voluntary opportunities for districts to review and make corrections to assessment data through CDE’s Data Pipeline. The tentative dates for the ACCESS for English language learners SBD review window are Monday, March 16, through Wednesday, March 25.

CMAS extended and early testing windows

Districts that requested a CMAS English Language Arts and math extended window for up to five weeks due to device capacity may start testing as soon as Monday, March 16.

Districts that requested an early three week high school science window may begin testing as early as Monday, March 23. Window start dates depend on the dates requested by districts. Verification of special test form assignments (e.g., text-to-speech) and online test session setup must be completed by assessment coordinators prior to testing.

Verification of CMAS and CoAlt training in districts

To confirm that all schools have completed spring assessment administration training, the CMAS and CoAlt Verification of District Training form is to be returned to the CDE Assessment Unit prior to testing. Please note this requires superintendent signature. This form confirms that all individuals involved with assessment administration or handling secure materials have been trained and have signed a Colorado Security Agreement form for spring 2020.

CO School Day PSAT and SAT

District assessment coordinators should check with test coordinators to make sure that they have scheduled their PSAT and SAT administration training with school staff. Test administration training for both the PSAT and the SAT are available to schools via pre-recorded modules posted to the College Board’s online learning system. Test coordinators, back-up coordinators and Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) coordinators must complete online training by Wednesday, March 25. 

Proctors must complete online training by Wednesday, April 8. For additional testing staff, including room and hall monitors, schools have the option of having them complete the online proctor training or training them locally using the Hall and Room Monitoring training slides available on the College Board’s Colorado website. Monitors must also have completed training by Wednesday, April 8.

What's on the Horizon

Spring 2020 Colorado State Assessment windows

CMAS, PSAT, SAT and CoAlt assessments will be administered across Colorado this spring. Additional information about state assessment windows and testing dates is available on the General Assessment Information webpage.

Assessment Request for Proposals

Five years ago, the SAT was selected as the college entrance assessment that would be given to all high school juniors free of charge to students. The $2.9 million annual contract was awarded to College Board in 2015, and state assessment laws require CDE to issue this request for proposal (RFP) every five years. Currently, College Board’s PSAT 9, PSAT 10 and SAT are given to all high school students in grades nine, 10 and 11. 
This spring, as required, CDE will issue a RFP for a college entrance assessment suite, which also will serve as the state tests that are used in Colorado's school and district accountability system. The 11th grade assessment is required by statute to be a nationally recognized college entrance exam, and all three assessments (grades 9-11) must be aligned to the Colorado Academic Standards.

Proposals will be evaluated by a selection committee composed of teachers, administrators and content experts. CDE expects to announce the results in May or June.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

  • March 2: Districts may begin proctor caching CMAS math, ELA, and high school science content for computer-based testing
  • March 3: Wave 1 - CMAS and CoAlt materials from initial orders scheduled to arrive in districts (materials for early and extended testing, assessment coordinator kits; test administrator manuals)
  • March 16 – 25: ACCESS for ELLs Student Biographical Data Review (SBD) tentatively scheduled
  • March 23: Districts may begin proctor caching CMAS elementary and middle school science and social studies content for computer-based testing
  • March 24: Wave 2 - CMAS and CoAlt materials from initial orders scheduled to arrive in districts (materials for regular window)
  • April 6 – 24: Official CMAS and CoAlt three week testing window
  • April 14: CO SAT administration date
  • April 14 – 16: CO PSAT administration window (district selects test date within this window)
  • April 14 – 17: CO SAT accommodated testing window (eligible students only)
  • April 14 – 21: CO PSAT accommodated testing window (eligible students only)
  • April 28: CO SAT makeup administration date
  • April 28 – 29: CO PSAT makeup administration window
  • April 29:
    • Deadline for UPS pickup of scorable CMAS materials (please return scorable paper test books before deadline if possible to facilitate processing of paper materials and scoring)
    • Deadline for entering CoAlt scores into PearsonAccessnext
  • May 1:
    • Deadline for UPS pickup of non-scorable CMAS materials
    • Deadline to return CO SAT and PSAT make-up test materials (materials shipped after this date will not be scored)
    • Deadline for returning district CMAS Post Test Compliance Report to CDE through Syncplicity
  • May 8: Deadline for initial CMAS data clean-up in PearsonAccessnext (district and school levels)
  • May 11-13: Final CMAS data clean-up in PearsonAccessnext (district level) 
  • May 18-27: Tentative PSAT/SAT Student Biographical Data Review window
  • May 18-28: Tentative CMAS (all content areas) and CoAlt (science and social studies) Student Biographical Data Review window
  • May 27-June 3: Tentative CoAlt DLM English language arts and math Student Biographical Data Review window

More Information

For more information, contact Joyce Zurkowski, chief assessment officer, 303-866-6760,, or visit

Educator Talent

What's Happening Now

English learner professional development requirement

The State Board of Education adopted new rules in June 2018 requiring educators with elementary, math, science, social studies and English language arts endorsements to complete English learner professional development. This has also been referred to as Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) training. 

Educators with these endorsements can meet the new requirements via two pathways: individual professional development (PD) verification or a CDE-approved program:  

Individual PD verification pathway
Previously completed PD and up to 10 clock hours of relevant work experience can be counted. Educators can find no-cost opportunities to satisfy their remaining hours through training opportunities offered by CDE's Office of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education, as well as WIDA Self-Paced e-Workshops available through Aug 31. For details on accessing the WIDA self-Paced eWorkshops and CDE-approved programs, visit the CDE Professional Learning Opportunities webpage.  

CDE-approved programs
PD providers have been approved by CDE to offer programs that satisfy the complete 45-clock hours requirement. Visit the CDE Approved English Learner Professional Development Programs webpage to learn more about the various programs available, including some free or reduced-cost options.

Some educators may need to take a complete series of new PD to meet this requirement before they renew their professional teaching license. Others may have already completed some of the required PD and only need to supplement that PD. To better understand which requirements need to be met, deadlines for completing the PD requirements, and how to incorporate past and current PD to meet the 45-hour clock hours, visit the English Learner PD Requirements - Information for Educators webpage.

For more information, contact Jennifer Simons at 303-866-6793 or

What's on the Horizon

Watch for more information in next month's Update.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

Watch for more information in next month's Update.

More Information

For more information, contact Colleen O'Neil, associate commissioner of Educator Talent, 303-866-6945, or visit


What's Happening Now

2018 Census Data for Title I allocations

The U.S. Department of Education (USDE) released the 2018 census tables that show the population and poverty estimates for local educational agencies (LEAs) in Colorado. The USDE will use the 2018 census data to calculate Fiscal Year 2020 (school year 2020 – 21) allocations under Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act.

The Census Bureau has established a challenge period for state and local education agencies to review the 2018 LEA poverty and population data for certain non-statistical errors. These errors are those that the Census Bureau may have made in: (1) processing input data or running the estimation models/programs; or (2) in preparing or processing information to define geographic boundaries (e.g., school district boundaries).

Review the 2018 memo that outlines the challenge process (PDF). This challenge period ends on Wednesday, March 11. Contact your ESEA Regional Contact for questions or help with navigating the challenge process. For more information, visit the Historical Census Data and Resources webpage.

Ed-Flex waivers

CDE plans to apply for authority from the USDE to grant waivers for certain provisions of federal programs in the Consolidated Application. This authority is called Ed-Flex and is made available to states through the Education Flexibility Partnership Act of 1999, as updated by ESSA in 2015.

Ed-Flex is a program that allows the U.S. Secretary of Education to delegate to states with strong accountability safeguards the authority to waive certain federal education requirements that may impede local efforts to reform and improve education. It is designed to help districts and schools carry out educational reforms and raise the achievement levels of all children by providing increased flexibility in the implementation of federal education programs in exchange for enhanced accountability for the performance of students. Ed-Flex is not a funding program but rather a program that delegates the authority to states to grant waivers of certain federal requirements.

The Colorado Draft Ed-Flex Application is available for public comment through March 15. Comments related to the application may be submitted to

Comments may also be mailed to the following address:

Colorado Department of Education
Federal Program Unit
1560 Broadway, Suite 1100
Denver, CO 80202-5149

Please share this notice with any interested members of your community including, but not limited to, parents, educators and school administrators. All comments received will be reviewed by CDE and included with the application to USDE. CDE may, when appropriate, make adjustments to the state application based on the comments received. Questions can be directed to Brad Bylsma at 303-866-6937 or

ESSA Monitoring

School districts and BOCES that are scheduled for ESSA monitoring during the 2019-20 school year must submit documentation and evidence related to the indicators assigned for their level of monitoring – Tiers I, II or III – by Monday, March 16. Districts were notified in early fall of the indicators on which they are to be monitored.

For additional information, contact Joey Willett at or 303-866-6700, DeLilah Collins at or 303-866-6850, Nazanin Mohajeri-Nelson at or 303-866-6205, or your ESEA Regional Contact

REAP Eligibility Data Verification

USDE has released the Title V Eligibility spreadsheet to states and school districts for their review and data corrections. CDE encourages review of the information for accuracy as it will be used to determine eligibility for the 2020-21 Rural Education Achievement Program (REAP) Small, Rural School Achievement (SRSA) and Rural and Low-Income Schools (RLIS) awards. School district information is contained in the Master Eligibility Spreadsheet on the USDE website.

Notify Kristen Collins of any inaccurate information at or 303-866-6705, and she will work with the USDE to update the spreadsheet as necessary.

SRSA Application Process

Every school district eligible to receive an SRSA allocation for 2020-21, in accordance with the master eligibility spreadsheet, will apply for an SRSA award using a unique link that was provided by the USDE on Feb. 3 in MAX Survey.

USDE will conduct application webinars for SRSA-eligible LEAs on Thursday, March 19, and Thursday, April 2, to demonstrate the simplified process for submitting the SRSA application using MAX Survey. Both webinars will be identical in format and content and will answer questions from participants throughout the presentation. Registration information for webinars will be announced soon.

For additional questions or support please contact Kristen Collins at or 303-866-6705.

What's on the Horizon

Regional Network Meetings on Consolidated Application training

The Office of ESEA Programs is hosting more webinars in its series of Regional Network Meetings (RNM) to support LEAs in completing the 2020-21 Consolidated Application. There have been revisions to application questions, and additional functionality has been built into the application platform.

Training will provide an overview of the application changes, guidance on submitting quality responses and information about promising practices and use of ESSA funds. Time will also be allotted for LEAs to complete portions of their applications. 

All sessions begin at 9:30 a.m. with lunch provided. Click the region to register via Eventbrite.

Those unable to attend in-person may reach out to their ESEA Regional Contact to schedule training support.

Non-Public School Consultation Form updated

An updated 2020-21 Non-public Schools consultation form (PDF) is available. The form has been updated to collect information regarding the number of students enrolled by parents in a given nonpublic school. Consultation forms are due to CDE on Friday, May 29, to

For questions, contact DeLilah Collins at or 303-866-6850. Visit the Equitable Services in Non-Public Schools webpage for more information.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

April 30 - Post Award revision system closes


More Information

For more information on Federal Programs, contact Melissa Colsman, Associate Commissioner at 303-866-6737,, or visit

Organizational Effectiveness

What's Happening Now


Sign up for new emergency notification system 

School and district leaders are encouraged to register for a new emergency notification system launched by the Colorado Information Analysis Center (CIAC) within the Department of Public Safety. The digital platform includes a website and emergency messaging system and is designed to unify, standardize and distribute multi-jurisdictional emergency information. The system is a partnership between the Colorado Department of Public Safety, Colorado Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Management, CIAC and the Colorado School Safety Resource Center. 

All schools in Colorado from the largest university to the smallest early childcare center, may in some cases face the same emergency or threat. During these types of incidents, the state may be able to provide situational awareness to schools across a broad swath of Colorado, supporting the messaging of local and county law enforcement agencies. In all cases the CIAC may provide this messaging in an attempt to reach all stakeholders who have registered under the “School Personnel Registration” on the CIAC site, not necessarily to direct response actions or supplant directions of local emergency responders. Schools may be advised of an event as a state group or as smaller regional groups based on proximity to the given event and their registration choices.

View instructions about how to sign up for emergency notifications (PDF).

For more information, visit the CIAC website. Questions can be directed to Christine Harms with the School Safety Resource Center at 303-239-4534 or

Census 2020

Teachers, principals can help communicate about the importance of the census

Households begin receiving information about how to participate in the census in mid-March with online counting beginning Monday, March 23. So now is the time to let your families know about the importance of filling out the U.S. census forms. Remember, teachers and principals are trusted voices in the community and can help families understand the importance of responding to the U.S. Census. The information gathered from the census will likely result in millions of federal education dollars coming into Colorado over the next decade. 

CDE has created a toolkit to help principals and teachers communicate with parents about the importance of responding to the census. This includes drop-in articles and flyers to share at school and community events.

Teachers can also use the census as a teaching opportunity to help students understand the U.S. Constitution, history, social studies and math and statistics. CDE has compiled a toolkit for teachers with links to online free resources that are searchable by grade, school subject, topic and education standard. 

For more information, contact Jeremy Meyer at or 303-866-2334.

Data Pipeline


The window for ACCESS for ELLs Student Biographical Data collection will be open from Monday, March 16, through Wednesday, March 25.

Report Card March

The Report Card March collection is open until Friday, April 3.

AEC Application/Renewal and Planned Measures Collections

Both the Alternative Education Campus (AEC) Application/Renewal and AEC Planned Measures collections will open Wednesday, March 4, and close Friday, April 24.


  • The four-day school week application for 2020-21 will be due on Monday, May 11.
  • Districts may request school code changes for the 2020-21 school year. Requests must be made by Tuesday, June 30. 

Student End of Year

The 2019-20 End of Year snapshot soft open is live. Business rules and documentation will continue to be updated through the spring. The official launch is scheduled for Tuesday, May 5.

Collections opening in April:

  • Reading to Ensure Academic Development (READ)
  • Attendance and School Discipline

Designated Agency

The 2019-20 Designated Agency data collection is open in the Data Pipeline to enter 2019-20 candidates until Monday, Aug. 31.

Health & Wellness Office

New funding available for School Health Professional Grant

The School Health Professional Grant Program (SHPG) is designed to provide funds to eligible education providers to enhance the presence of school health professionals in both elementary and secondary schools. The application, budget and deadline for submission can be found on the SHPG webpage.

Applications are due Tuesday, March 24. Please note that an intent to apply was not required to be submitted to apply.

For more information, contact Phyllis Reed at 303-866-6593 or

What's on the Horizon

Watch for more information in next month's Update.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

March 25:  ACCESS for ELLs SBD collection closes.

More Information

For more information on data pipeline, contact Jan Petro, director of data services, 303-866-6838, or visit

Postsecondary Readiness

What's Happening Now

Attend a Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Symposium

Workshops that support the implementation of Graduation Guidelines will be held this month, hosted by CDE and participating BOCES and school districts.

Join peers to learn more about capstone, work-based learning, industry certifications, Individual Career and Academic Plans, and other strategies for student success. Consider bringing district partners, teams of administrators, teachers, counselors and other staff to a Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness (PWR) Symposium at one of the following locations:

  • Tuesday, March 10 - Hosted by Northwest BOCES in Steamboat Springs
  • Tuesday, March 17 - Hosted by Colorado Springs School District 11 in Colorado Springs

For information, resources from past symposia and registration links, visit the Graduation Guidelines webpage.  

Contact Robin Russel with questions at or 303-866-2908.

What's on the Horizon

Complete a survey about the concurrent enrollment website 

New legislation has mandated that CDE and the Colorado Department of Higher Education must provide a website about concurrent enrollment options and requirements. The website will be available for students, parents and legal guardians to use by Wednesday, July 1.

In order to provide the best information possible on the website, CDE and CDHE are trying to learn from districts and schools that have information online regarding student participation in concurrent enrollment.

Please help the department's efforts by completing an online survey via Google Forms by Wednesday, April 1. 

For questions about the survey, contact Michelle Romero at or 303-866-6609.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

April 1: Deadline to complete online survey for concurrent enrollment.

More Information

For more information on Student Pathways, contact Misti Ruthven, executive director, at 303-866-6206, or visit

Teaching and Learning

What's Happening Now

Preschool through 3rd Grade

Simplifying licensing requirements for district-based preschool programs

On Feb. 21 all Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) coordinators received a letter about how CDE and the Colorado Department of Human Services are working together to simplify licensing requirements for district-based preschool programs. A copy of this letter can be found on the CPP section of CDE's website.

For more information about these changes please contact Preschool through 3rd Grade Director Anji Gallanos at or 720-527-0497.

New READ Act budget reporting requirement

To receive a distribution of per-pupil intervention money for students with significant reading deficiencies, districts must submit a budget to CDE prior to the start of the school year. The budget must include a narrative explaining the proposed use of intervention money in accordance with the described allowable uses. This requirement is a result of changes from Senate Bill 19-199. Budgets will be collected from April 1 through June 30.

CDE will host a series of informational webinars about this new budget reporting requirement. The next webinar is at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, March 10. Visit the READ Data Collection webpage to join the webinars and access previously recorded webinars.

For more information, contact Whitney Hutton at or 303-866-6421.

Standards and Instructional Support

Application open for Computer Science Grant Program

The application window for the Computer Science Grants Program is open through Friday, April 10. The program provides funds to increase enrollment and participation of traditionally underrepresented students in computer science education activities. Competitive grant awards will be distributed to school districts, BOCES and district charter schools or Institute Charter Schools. Funding will be awarded in the 2020-21 fiscal year.

For more information, contact Chris Summers at or 303-866-6576. Visit the grant program webpage for more information.

Setting the Standard Podcast 

The Setting the Standard podcast brings you news, interviews, teaching tips and content expertise from each of the specialists on the Standards and Instructional Support team. Two episodes have been released, the first on assessment literacy and the second on standards implementation. Listen to the episodes via Anchor.

For ideas or for more information, contact Alyssa Wooten at or 720-827-5307.

MoneyWi$er Financial Innovation Awards

Sunday, March 15, is the deadline to apply for the MoneyWi$er Financial Innovation Awards, presented by the Office of the Colorado Attorney General in partnership with CDE. The awards recognize distinguished school districts, schools, educators and students who prioritize personal finance education throughout their school and community. In addition to statewide recognition for the awards, honorees will be awarded funds to continue elevating personal finance education in Colorado and their communities. 

Find details about the awards on the Personal Financial Literacy webpage. For more information, contact Alyssa Wooten at or 720-827-5307.

What's on the Horizon

Watch for more information in next month's Update.

Important Upcoming Deadlines

March 15 - Financial awards application deadline

April 1 - READ budget collection begins

April 10 - Computer Science grant applications due


More Information

For more information from the Teaching and Learning Unit, contact Floyd Cobb, executive director, 303-866-6868,