February 19, 2016

Dear Legislative Update reader: Nonpartisan Community Summits Provide Important Public Feedback for Possible Reform of State Finance and Elections
An organization calling itself Building A Better Colorado recently completed dozens of community summits throughout Colorado including one on January 11, 2016 in Boulder at the BVSD Education Center. A summary of the Boulder meeting, attended by more than 75 area community leaders, may be found here (pdf). Endorsed by several prominent Colorado Republicans and Democrats, Building A Better Colorado describes itself as, "A diverse nonpartisan coalition of Coloradans" that have come together with "the shared belief that Colorado can do better than the divisive arguments that have come to dominate our political discourse."

It is Building A Better Colorado's goal to engage all political points of view in a serious, thoughtful discussion about how best to construct and enact the structural governmental reforms that Colorado will need to break its constitutional logjam. As identified by community summit participants throughout Colorado, that logjam centers on conflicting tax, revenue, and spending requirements placed in the Colorado state constitution since 1982 as well as the ease with which the state constitution is able to be amended. Additionally, the organization has identified a growing concern about the level of civic engagement by the more than one million Colorado voters who register as "Unaffiliated." 

Building a Better Colorado is developing a possible proposal for the November 2016 general election ballot.

ChalkbeatCOLORADO​ covers PK-20 education issues throughout Colorado including one of the most in-depth and accurate PK-12 daily news to be found anywhere during the session.

This week, BVSD Communications draws your particular attention to an Feb. 18 story by reporter Todd Engdahl entitled,​ "Proposal to strip student growth data from teacher evaluations goes down."

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Policy Matters, LLC BVSD Bill Tracker
During each regular session (January - May) of the Colorado General Assembly, the Boulder Valley School District is represented on a day-to-day basis by Tanya Kelly-Bowry and Ernestine Mondragon of the firm Policy Matters, LLC. They regularly communicate with BVSD Superintendent Bruce Messinger and Director of Communications & Legislative Policy Briggs Gamblin. This is a link to an online bill tracking system for legislation being monitored by our district.

2016 BVSD Legislative Platform
Each year the Boulder Valley Board of Education approves a legislative platform that sets the district’s legislative priorities and guides the BVSD contract lobbying firm, Policy Matters, LLC, led by veteran lobbyists Tanya Kelly-Bowry and Ernestine Mondragon. BVSD’s effort is overseen by Superintendent Bruce Messinger and Communications and Legislative Policy Director Briggs Gamblin.

Understanding Colorado School Finance
Colorado supporters of PK-12 public education have found nonprofit Great Education Colorado to be a valuable resource both for important factual information concerning state funding of Colorado public schools and advocacy opportunities if interested. For the BVSD Weekly Legislative Bulletin's purposes, our focus will be setting context especially for those readers not yet familiar with the factors involved in Colorado state government's complex funding of public education across the state's 178 school districts.
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Colorado PK-12 Public Education Funding - Frequently Asked Questions

Contact your legislators
A list of legislators whose districts are wholly or partially within the boundaries of BVSD. ​

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