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Colorado Charter Schools


In the state of Colorado charter schools are public schools that operate via a contract with an authorizer such as the local school district or, in some cases, the Colorado Charter School Institute. Our office administers the Colorado Charter School Startup and Implementation grant, which provides technical assistance to charter schools and authorizers, processes waiver requests for the State Board of Education, collects data on charter schools, produces special topic studies and the state evaluation of charter schools, and responds to questions from the general public. See more information on the CCSP Grant.

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News & Updates 

Peer Reviewers for 2021 CCSP Grant Application

The CDE Schools of Choice Unit is preparing to embark on another grant competition for the Colorado Charter School Program (CCSP). We could use some help on our next round of application reviewers. For more information, check out this flyer. If you have experience in charter schools operating in Colorado and have not already been contacted directly, or you know someone qualified who would be interested, please share and sign up via this interest link. As the time to share interest has expired as of Wednesday, September 15th, please complete this form as soon as possible. Feel free to contact CCSP Sub-Grant Monitor, Tanesha Bell, at with any questions. 

2022 United States Senate Youth Scholarship Program application now available

High school juniors or seniors are eligible to apply for the United States Senate Youth Program an educational experience for students interested in pursuing careers in public service. The USSYP brings the highest-level officials from each branch of government to meet with this outstanding group of young leaders - two high school juniors or seniors from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the Department of Defense Education Activity - for an intensive week-long education and leadership program. For 2022, the 60th Annual United States Senate Youth Program will be held in Washington D.C. March 5-12. Each delegate will be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate studies, with encouragement to pursue coursework in history and political science. Applications are due on Friday, Oct. 8. For more information please visit this website.

Colorado Comprehensive Literacy State Development Grant Opportunity   

CDE is excited to introduce a new grant opportunity to support literacy initiatives across the state. The Colorado Comprehensive Literacy State Development (CLSD) Grant is a federally supported grant intended to expand the use of evidence-based reading practices and interventions that advance literacy skills for children from birth to grade 12. Emphasis will be on historically underserved students, including children in poverty, English learners and children with disabilities through educator professional development, literacy consulting support, development of a district-wide Comprehensive Local Literacy Plan and other high impact strategies. The CLSD Grant will support one four-year cohort of approximately 20 LEPs beginning Oct. 1. There will be a total of $15,401,552 of available funds over the four-year grant. Please visit the CLSD page on CDE’s website for more information or contact the CLSD Grant Program Manager, Stacey Smith at

USDA Releases Waivers for the 2021-22 School Year

On Tuesday, April 20, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released a series of nationwide waivers that allow flexibility to school meal programs for the 2021-22 school year. These waivers allow schools to provide free meals to all students and increases the reimbursement rate for meals served. Meal distribution methods, such as grab-and-go and parent pick-up will also be allowed. CDE School Nutrition has opted into all waivers so districts will not need to opt in individually. To use these flexibilities next school year, districts will need to operate the Seamless Summer Option (SSO). The School Nutrition unit will be working closely with districts on how to apply for the SSO and will make this as smooth of a transition as possible for your food service departments. The School Nutrition unit will share more information as updates become available through their webpage and weekly e-newsletter, the Dish. If you have questions, please submit them through this form.