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News Release - State board recognizes students with perfect ACT score

Nov. 14, 2013

State board recognizes students with Perfect ACT score

Commissioner makes statement on termination of inBloom agreement

The Colorado State Board of Education met for its regularly scheduled meeting Wednesday, Nov. 13 and Thursday, Nov. 14. Highlights from the meeting include:

Perfect ACT Recognition

The Colorado State Board of Education and department honored 17 students from across the state who earned a perfect score on the Colorado American College Test (ACT) during the 2012-2013 school year. Colorado is one of 14 states to provide the ACT to all juniors.  The students who scored a perfect 36 on their Colorado ACT are: 

  • Nicole Day-Lucore, George Washington High School (Denver Public Schools) 
  • Arianna Benson, Fairview High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Michael Chen, Fairview High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Eliza Cornell, Boulder High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Kara Hartig, Boulder High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Rohan Jennings, Peak to Peak Charter School (Boulder Valley School District)
  • Emma Koltun-Baker, Boulder High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Qi Liao, Fairview High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Joshua Mundinger, Boulder High School (Boulder Valley School District) 
  • Dennis Shi, Rocky Mountain High School (Poudre R-1) 
  • Lindsay Gnesios, Grand Junction High School (Mesa County Valley 51) 
  • Shawn Ong, Douglas County High School (Douglas County School District) 
  • Nathaniel Gibby, Cherokee Trail High School (Cherry Creek Schools) 
  • Rick Laoprasert, Cherry Creek High School (Cherry Creek Schools)
  • David Mathews, Cherokee Trail High School (Cherry Creek Schools) 
  • Julie Newman, Mountain Vista High School (Douglas County School District)
  • Susan Niederhoff, Smoky Hill High School (Cherry Creek Schools)

Educator Recognition

The board also recognized PEOPLE magazine’s 2013 Teacher of the Year Mary Kurt-Mason. Kurt-Mason is a teacher for students with significant support needs at Pagosa Springs High School in the Archuleta School District. Each year, PEOPLE magazine looks for teachers who are changing the lives of their students, improving their communities, and paving the way for a new generation of leaders. For more information, visit,,20743011,00.html


Commissioner of Education Robert Hammond made a statement on the termination of the state’s agreement with inBloom. To read the full statement, click here

Study Sessions

At the October board meeting, the board engaged in a study session on the state’s achievement gaps.  This month, Edwin Saunders, school leadership officer for Harrison School District joined the meeting to provide an overview of the progress Harrison School District is making in closing achievement gaps and raising performance for all students.  He shared lessons learned and supports designed to accelerate achievement. To view the presentation, click here

The board held a study session to provide information about districts and schools accredited with priority improvement or turnaround plan types.  The Colorado Accountability Act requires the state board to make decisions about districts and schools at the end of the five-year clock for those remaining on priority improvement or turnaround (the state’s lowest performing schools and districts).  To view the presentation, click here

Accountability, Performance and Support

The board reviewed the department’s recommendations for district plan type assignments and district accreditation ratings.  The accreditation ratings represent recommendations that are either the same as the initial recommendations made by the department, or recommendations that represent an agreement reached by the department and those districts that elected to submit additional data for consideration.  To view the presentation, click here

School Readiness Assessment Menu 

Staff provided the board with information on extending the implementation timeline of the school readiness assessment menu by one year to allow for more assessment options to be available to districts.  Based on the discussion, the department will be moving forward with the year extension.

BEST Performance Audit Implementation Plan

The state board received an update on the progress toward recommendations made in the Building Excellent Schools Today (BEST) performance audit. A handout outlined the plan to track implementation of the various recommendations. 

Pursuing a Dance Endorsement

The board had an initial discussion on pursuing a dance endorsement for educators.  The board raised questions and requested additional information for staff to bring for future discussion. 

Notice of Rulemaking

The board approved a notice of rulemaking for the Colorado Educator Licensing Act of 1991.

Rulemaking Hearings

The state board discussed rules concerning performance standards for each category of licensed personnel evaluated under the Licensed Personnel Evaluations Act and criteria to be applied in the evaluations.  In addition to teachers and principals, the draft rules add criteria for the evaluation of other categories of licensed personnel, including audiologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, school counselors, school nurses, school orientation and mobility specialists, school psychologists, school social workers and speech and language pathologists. A vote on these rules will occur in December. 

The board approved rules for the Native American Language and Culture Instructor Authorization. 

Other Action

The board voted to approve the school and district performance frameworks targets for the measures used to determine the levels of attainment of the performance indicators for the 2014-2015 academic year. 

The board voted to approve HOPE Online as an Alternative Education Campus for the 2013-14 school year based on its reconfiguration. 

The Colorado State Board of Education will hold its next meeting in December at the Colorado Department of Education, 201 E. Colfax Ave., in Denver.

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