Colorado Academic Standards Advocacy Team is comprised of real moms, dads, teachers, administrators and community members who support public education in Colorado. Our goal is to work together to join in advocacy for Colorado children, share factual information, eliminate rumors and rhetoric that negatively impact children and education and to start conversations that lead to offering all children a bright future in college and career. You can sign-up for a presentation for your PTA by contacting us. We have resources, blogs, and videos too! We have launched this advocacy campaign and we hope that you will participate with us and join in to support all Colorado childrenCheck this video out! & Visit Us Today!

Parents and their children are the consumers of our nation’s public education system, and parents have always been essential partners in education. However, they haven’t always been included at the decision-making table. This has caused confusion, mistrust and backlash when new initiatives — whether at the federal, state or local level — have been considered and implemented. ESSA now provides a unique opportunity for parents and families to give their input and to hold states and districts accountable for their children’s educational experience.”   – Laura Bay, President of National PTA

Guidelines for SEAs on Engaging Parents
Framework for Meaningful Parent Engagement Under ESSA

National PTA, our constituent associations, and advocates across the country are seeking to empower all families to be active participants in the state and local implementation of ESSA to ensure equity and opportunity for all students. Click on the Roadmaps below to learn how you can get involved in ESSA implementation at the state, local and school levelESSA State RoadmapESSA Local Roadmap, and ESSA Parent Roadmap

Start a Conversation: Questions PTA Advocates Should Ask about the ESSA Implementation.

National PTA conducted a survey that many of you participated in (thank you!) on the Every Student Succeeds Act implementation process in your state and a scan of the state department of education websites to find out what and how states are going about engaging stakeholders, especially parents in the process.  Based on the feedback from the survey, the Government Affairs staff has put together information on how to “Start a Conversation: Questions PTA Advocates Should Ask about the ESSA Implementation.”  The document also includes a link to state ESSA implementation pages. We hope you find these resources valuable.  Visit both the “Start a Conversation” and state ESSA implementation web page, we encourage you to share them widely!

What is common core?

The Common Core is a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA). These learning goals outline what a student should know and be able to do at the end of each grade.

The standards are:

  1. Research and evidence based
  2. Clear, understandable, and consistent
  3. Aligned with college and career expectations
  4. Based on rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher-order thinking skills
  5. Built upon the strengths and lessons of current state standards
  6. Informed by other top performing countries in order to prepare all students for success in our global economy and society

The Colorado Academic Standards (CAS) are the expectations of what students need to know and be able to do at the end of each grade. They also stand as the values and content organizers of what Colorado sees as the future skills and essential knowledge for our next generation to be more successful. State standards are the basis of the annual state assessment. 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.

What are the standards?

The state has developed standards for Extended Evidence Outcomes for students with significant cognitive disabilities. Colorado also adopted Colorado English Language Proficiency (CELP) standards to support English language learners. Read the Colorado Standards! Click on a subject below and then find the grade level you’d like to see!

Introduction to the Colorado Academic Standards and the truth timeline:

Year (Month)Action
2008Colorado Legislature passes S.B. 08-212 requiring revision of standards and alignment of the P-12 educational system. The bill mandates each local education agencyadopts standards, at a minimum, in those subject areas that are included in the state preschool through elementary and secondary education standards, including but not limited to English language competency and visual and performing arts.
2009Colorado State Board of Education adopts standards in 10 content areas and for English language proficiency.
  • Colorado State Board of Education adopts the Common Core State Standards for mathematics and reading, writing, and communicating
  • The Colorado Department of Education releases the Colorado Academic Standards for mathematics and reading, writing and communication incorporating the Common Core State Standards.

“Learning Heroes, National PTA and Univision Communications Inc. Release “Readiness Roadmap” to Deliver Resources Parents Say Would Be Most Helpful” A national poll released today reveals public school parents’ perspectives on their children’s academic, emotional and physical well-being, and identifies a disconnect between views on students’ performance in school and the national data.

The study—“Parents 2016: Hearts and Minds of Public School Parents in an Uncertain Worldwhich polled more than 1,300 parents with children in grades K-8, was conducted by Hart Research and commissioned by Learning Heroes, in collaboration with Univision Communications Inc.; in partnership with National PTA, National Urban League, NCLR and UNCF; and with support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation. The findings show parents’ high expectations and deep engagement in their children’s development and unearth areas where parents most need support.

Across race, ethnicity and income, parents want to see their child go to college and are committed to helping them get there,” said Geoff Garin, president of Hart Research. “But along with these shared goals, parents share worries. On top of pressing concerns such as bullying, physical safety and their child’s social-emotional development, many worry that their kids won’t be prepared for college.”

Major Findings:
  • Parents are united in their belief in the importance of college. Seventy-five percent of parents believe it is very important or absolutely essential for their child to attain a college education, including 90% of Hispanic parents, 83% of African American parents and 67% of white parents. Yet two-fifths are not very confident that their children will be prepared to succeed in college, and more than half (53%) of all parents – including 70% of Hispanic parents – worry about their ability to afford it.
  • Parents believe their children are on-track academically, despite national data. The study finds that 90% believe their child performs at or above grade level in reading and the same proportion feels that way about their child’s performance in math, compared to just over a third of students who successfully met that bar according to the 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress. This disconnect likely reflects an awareness lag, as states transition to higher learning standards and accompanying state assessments.
  • Parents believe specific resources will be most helpful in preparing their child for success. When asked to rate how helpful various resources would be, parents prioritized an explanation of grade-level expectations for their child and activities to improve math and English skills.

“Readiness Roadmap”

To provide parents with the tools they need to guide their children in their education journey, and in response to the study findings, Learning Heroes, National PTA, and Univision Communications Inc. released a “Readiness Roadmap” in both English and Spanish, including:

  • Grade-by-grade learning goal breakdowns, which parents rated as the most helpful resource to support their child’s success, with 66% stating this would be extremely or very helpful.
  • Tools for assessing and promoting social-emotional wellness (48% of parents worry about this topic), including tips for effectively communicating with teachers (63% of parents communicate with their child’s teachers at least once a month).
  • Resources for preparing for and paying for college, as:
    • 38% of parents worry about their child having the knowledge and skills needed to be ready for college, including 58% of Hispanic, 33% of African-American and 31% of white parents; and
    • 53% of parents worry about their ability to pay for college, including 70% of Hispanic, 52% of African-American and 47% of white parents.

Parents are deeply engaged in helping their child be successful, and that looks different for every child.  Parents shouldn’t feel like they are on a wild goose chase when searching for the right resources and help for their child’s educational success,” said Bibb Hubbard, founder, and president of Learning Heroes. “As K-8 parents learn how to put their child on the path to success in college, the Readiness Roadmap makes that job easier by quickly connecting them to top notch tools and resources.

As parents, we want the best for our children and want to support their learning and achievement. During this important transition to higher standards and aligned tests, many of us don’t feel adequately informed to navigate our children’s educational journey,” said Nathan R. Monell, CAE, executive director of National PTA. “These new resources from Learning Heroes will ensure that every parent has what they need to make certain their child has every opportunity for success.” Parents can go to Be A Learning Hero to learn more and sign up to receive regular updates with tools, tips, and resources.

About Learning Heroes

Learning Heroes informs and equips parents to help their child succeed in school. We start by listening to parents and meeting them where they are with easy to understand information, tools, and resources. A project of the New Venture Fund, our partners include Common Sense Media, GreatSchools, NCLR, National PTA, National Urban League, Univision Communications Inc. and others.

About the Study

Hart Research Associates conducted this national survey among 1,374 parents of public school children in grades K-8. It includes a nationally representative survey of 802 elementary and middle school parents, as well as oversamples among Hispanics (to yield a total of 500 Hispanic parents) and African Americans (to yield a total of 265 African-American parents).  The online survey was conducted January 6 to 22, 2016 and was offered in both English and Spanish.  It was administered by GfK, using their KnowledgePanel©, a probability-based Web panel designed to be representative of the United States. The survey has a margin of error of +3.2 percentage points for all parents. Sample tolerances for subgroups are larger.


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