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Welcome to the CDE Update! This monthly publication for district superintendents and BOCES directors will show you what is happening in key priority areas at CDE and include details on implementation, milestones, deadlines and resources. 

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April 2024:


Dear superintendents and BOCES directors,

I hope that you have all had an opportunity for some well-deserved rest and relaxation during your spring break and are ready for the sprint toward the end of the school year.

As we enter assessment season, I want to thank you and your teams for the hard work and coordination it takes to administer CMAS and PSAT/SAT. We know that parent communication is always front of mind during testing, so our Communications Division has prepared a toolkit with materials in English and Spanish that you can use- feel free to adapt these letters for your community.

In addition to supporting your assessment coordinators this month, our team is also seeking your feedback to help plan for the next round of professional learning cohorts in the 2024-2025 school year. If you have not had a chance to attend a cohort gathering, think of it like a statewide professional learning community made up of other district leaders who share the challenges and opportunities you experience every day. This year’s professional learning cohorts have focused on areas including social emotional learning, supporting newcomer students, and math instruction. 

April also marks the launch of the nomination process for Colorado’s 2025 Teacher of the Year! Anyone can submit a nomination through our online form, and nominees will be invited to begin the application process. We know that our educators are already juggling a lot, so we will be hosting virtual office hours to provide support for teachers working on their applications. 

We asked our former winners and finalists to share their reflections about the application process, and we heard this from 2024 Teacher of the Year finalist Miles Groth from Manitou Springs: 

As a public school teacher, there are often times where it is difficult to realize the positive impact we are all making. It is much easier to focus on what we are not able to do or the challenges of being a teacher.  In participating in the Colorado Teacher of the Year process, I was honored to see and hear about the impacts that I’ve made on previous students, and the process reaffirmed the immense value of the work that all teachers do. 

You can use this communications toolkit to share information about Teacher of the Year nominations with your teams, parents, and families. 


Thank you for all that you do,


Nominate an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable and skilled K-12 teacher for the 2025 Colorado Teacher of the Year award by Tuesday, May 28. Once a teacher is nominated, they are sent an invitation to apply. The selected teacher will represent the entire profession in the state and automatically become Colorado’s nominee for the National Teacher of the Year Program.     

This school year, CDE’s District Improvement Strategy Office worked with 436 district and school leaders across 63 districts in 10 Professional Learning Cohorts focused on topics like newcomer support, chronic absenteeism, family-school-community partnerships, math instruction and 504 supports.

As we begin planning for our 2024-2025 cohorts, we want your feedback on what focus areas would be most helpful for you! Please take three minutes to share thoughts on next year’s learning cohorts by completing the 2024-25 CDE Learning Cohort Interest Survey.

Share this survey link with others who may be interested in participating in a cohort next year.



Accountability, Performance & Support

  • The 1241: Accountability, Accreditation, Student Performance, and Resource Inequity Task Force is inviting feedback from the public. The 1241 Task Force survey is an opportunity for the community to share their experiences with the state’s accountability system and provide ideas on accountability system improvements that can help to improve both academic opportunities and inequities for Colorado’s students. The survey is open through Sunday, April 28. 

    • Task Force members will consider all responses. For more information on the task force and upcoming meeting dates visit the task force website and subscribe to the task force’s email contact list.

  • The UIP template will rollover from 2023-24 to 2024-25 on April 15. After the rollover, school-level users will no longer have editing access to their 2023-24 UIPs; district-level users will still have access to past plans. Users will still be able to access feedback for school or district UIPs reviewed in the 2023-24 school.

  • Open-licensed educational resources can save schools money and allow teachers to adapt free resources for their classrooms. To learn about these resources, register for the OERColorado webinar series taking place on Tuesday, May 7 at 9am and on Tuesday, May 14 at 9am. Webinar recordings and materials will be available on the OERColorado website



  • Spring 2024 Colorado state assessment windows are open! 

    • CMAS/CoAlt: ELA/CSLA/Math/Science assessments should be taken between Monday, April 8 and Friday, April 26. 

    • CO PSAT/SAT tests should be taken between Monday, April 15 and Friday, April 26.

  • We have created a toolkit to help with communication to families about state assessments with materials in English and Spanish. The toolkit includes drop-in letters, fact sheets for parents and students, and links to help answer frequently asked questions.

District operations

District Operations

  • On Thursday, March 14, the State Board of Education voted 6-3 to approve changes to the school finance rules to provide flexibility for alternative teacher-pupil instruction for secondary school students. For more information, including a webinar presentation highlighting the major changes, visit the Update to the Rules for the Administration of the Public School Finance Act webpage.

    • The amendments allow traditional brick-and-mortar schools to apply seat time equivalency to a broad range of off-site learning experiences for students in grades 6-12.

Federal programs

Federal Programs & Support

  • We are hosting a virtual Consolidated Application training for anyone who manages federal funds on Tuesday, April 9 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. This training will focus on the updated narrative questions in the 2024-25 Consolidated Application for ESEA funds and will be recorded for future reference. We will also be holding regional in-person work sessions.

  • Want to learn more about GAINS? We are holding a virtual training on the new GAINS grants management system on Thursday, April 25 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sign up on the RNM webpage

Health and Nutrition

Nutrition & Health

  • The Vaping Prevention Education Grant is funded by the Colorado Attorney General’s Office as a result of a nationwide settlement from JUUL Labs, Inc. to address the youth vaping crisis. The grant program provides funding to K-12 educators to address the immediate and long-lasting health implications of vaping and the use of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems by youth. Grant proposals are due Wednesday, April 24.

  • Per House Bill 23-1009, the Secondary School Student Substance Use Committee developed a report with practices that secondary schools may implement to identify students who need substance use treatment, as well as interventions, resources, and referrals.

Postsecondary Readiness

Postsecondary Readiness

Teaching and learning

Teaching and Learning