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News Release - State board votes in favor of Heritage Heights Academy in Cherry Creek charter school appeal

Jan. 14, 2016

State board votes in favor of Heritage Heights Academy in Cherry Creek charter school appeal

The Colorado State Board of Education met for its regularly scheduled meeting on Jan. 13 & 14. Meeting highlights include:

Charter School Appeal

The board heard a charter school appeal case from Heritage Heights Academy and Cherry Creek School District. The board voted that the decision of the local board (Cherry Creek School District) was contrary to the best interest of the pupils, the school district, or community and moved to remand the matter to the district for reconsideration. This appeal arises from the Cherry Creek School District Board of Education’s denial of Heritage Heights Academy’s application to operate a charter school in the district. The board voted at a public meeting held on Oct. 12, 2015 to deny the charter application. Under law, if the state board remands to the district, it is required to remand with written instructions for reconsideration. The instructions shall include specific recommendations concerning on the matters requiring reconsideration.


The board recognized 2015 Blue Ribbon Schools award winners, Centennial Elementary (Harrison School District 2), Evergreen High School, (Jefferson County Public Schools), High Peaks Elementary (Boulder Valley School District), Kinard Core Knowledge Middle School (Poudre School District) and Penrose Elementary School (Fremont School District RE-2).  Since 1982, the U.S. Department of Education’s National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has honored America’s most successful public and private elementary, middle, and high schools. The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program recognizes schools whose students achieve at very high levels or schools that make significant progress in closing the achievement gap. Colorado’s award winners were honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., in November 2015, where they received a plaque and a flag signifying their status. For more information, visit

In addition, the board recognized recipients of the Individual Career and Academic (ICAP) awards. The awards honor those who best demonstrate a meaningful ICAP process within a building, school or district. Educators nominated administrators, school counselors, and teachers. The award winners are Adams 12 Five Star Schools for ICAP Leadership, Center Consolidated School District for ICAP Team, Poudre High School (Poudre School District) for ICAP Team and Timberline PK-8 School (St. Vrain Valley Schools) for ICAP Team.

Finally, the board recognized 2016 Colorado Teacher of the Year Leticia Guzman Ingram, a high school English language development coordinator, history and math teacher at Basalt High School (Roaring Fork School District). Ingram was named the 2016 Colorado Teacher of the Year at a surprise assembly held at Basalt High School on Oct. 26, 2015. She was selected for the honor based on her experience, passion, and expertise with English learners and their families. For more on the Colorado Teacher of the Year program, visit

Colorado Seal of Biliteracy

The board heard a presentation on the Seal of Biliteracy. The Seal of Bi-Literacy is an award given by a school, district, or county office of education in recognition of students who have studied and attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation. Representatives from Denver Public Schools, Eagle County Schools, Adams 14 and BUENO Center - CU Boulder gave an  overview of the Seal of Bi-Literacy in Colorado.  View the presentation.

Title I Multi-District Online School Allocation Pilot

The board voted to continue the Title I Multi-District Online School Allocation pilot project for three more years, through the 2018-2019 school year. The purpose of the project is to pilot alternative methods of allocating Title I funds that help to ensure that the districts that are providing the Title I services to students are the districts that receive the Title I funds. The pilot project was set to expire at the end of the 2015-2016 school year. Staff provided initial information regarding the outcomes of pilot project.

Rulemaking Hearings

The board approved the rules for the administration of the Exceptional Children’s Educational Act.

The board voted to delay the vote on the updated revisions to the rules for the 1991 Educator Licensing Act.

Other Action

The board did not approve the notice of rulemaking for the school bullying prevention and education grant program. This notice will be brought to the board again in February.