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Laws and Rules

gifted students working together

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Colorado Statutes

Colorado statutes are a compilation of the general and permanent laws of the state, incorporating all new laws, amendments, or repeals of old law. Statutes are laws that apply to all citizens and cover a variety of topics. Colorado School Laws are published annually.  Gifted education is codified in Colorado law.

Article 20 of Title 22, C.R.S. 

In 2002, the Attorney General’s office declared that gifted education, like special education, must be administered through administrative units according to the language of the Exceptional Children’s Education Act statute.

 “Administrative Unit” or “AU” means a school district, board of cooperative services, or the state Charter School Institute that: oversees and/or provides educational services to exceptional children; is responsible for the local administration of Article 20 of Title 22, C.R.S.; and meets the criteria established in these Rules. (22-20-R-12.01(1))

Education of Exceptional Children 

This law, commonly known as the Exceptional Children’s Education Act (ECEA), delineates requirements for administrative units (AUs) and their constituent schools or districts when implementing program plans for gifted student education. ECEA is the overarching law for gifted education and special education.

Student Groups

Colorado School Laws with provisions concerning the term “student groups” or the term “exceptional children” include gifted students. Also, laws pertaining to all students include gifted students, unless defined differently in a particular law. Gifted students are a “student group” defined under Colorado statute.

Gifted Education Law

House Bill 07-1244

The bill declared that “each administrative unit shall adopt and implement a Program Plan to identify and serve gifted children” 22-20-104.5.

House Bill 08-1021

Pursuant to CRS 22-20-204(2), the bill created the opportunity for AUs to accelerate highly advanced gifted children under age 4 for kindergarten and/or under age 5 for first grade and receive per pupil funding for accelerated early access students.  ECEA defines requirements for the implementation of specific elements and procedures for early access.  Providing early access as a gifted programming option is a local decision of the AU.

House Bill 11-1077

The bill separated the “Exceptional Children’s Education Act” article 20 of title 22, Colorado Revised Statutes, into two parts: one part concerns children with disabilities and another part concerns gifted children.  Language related only to gifted children was relocated to the second part: Education of Gifted Children (22-20, Part 2, C.R.S.)  The bill clarified what legal requirements apply to gifted education.  The bill did not change the ECEA requirements for gifted student education.

House Bill 14-1102

The bill made provisions for state funding for the purpose of Universal Screening and Qualified Personnel.

Rules for Administration of Law

Rules for the administration of a law are operating principles or orders created by an office of the state under authority granted by the Legislature. The State Board of Education promulgates administrative rules for school law.  ECEA Rules provide the administrative framework for schools and districts for the provision of services to gifted students. Rules for Gifted Education were last revised in 2021. 

Note:  Gifted Education, page 97