Metro Denver is committed to quality education
Pre-Kindergarten-12 education in Metro Denver offers many choices, including high-quality public schools with alternative learning environments such as charter and magnet schools, and private and parochial schools.
A significant aspect of Metro Denver's focus on preparing students for the workforce involves pre-kindergarten (pre-K) education. The region invests in preschool education to close achievement gaps, better prepare young children for learning, raise graduation rates, and further build its well-educated workforce.
In the 2006 election, Denver citizens passed the "Preschool Matters" ballot initiative, a 0.12 percent sales tax increase to make preschool education available to all four-year-olds. The tax raises $11 million annually to support the Denver Preschool Program, which sends up to 4,000 children to preschool. The program provides tuition credits for families to use at the preschool program of their choice.
In Metro Denver, the focus of K-12 education is choice. Both public and private schools offer an array of educational options for primary and secondary students.
The region's K-12 education system includes:
- 19 public school districts
- Private schools
- Charter schools
- Magnet schools
- International baccalaureate programs
- Parochial schools
- Montessori schools
- English Primary schools
Although excellent private schools are available in Metro Denver, they are not utilized as highly as in other cities due to the quality of our public school system. About 6.6 percent of the total student population attended private schools in Metro Denver during the 2015-16 school year.
- Metro Denver schools all offer open enrollment, meaning that students living in one school district can attend a school in any other district. This allows parents to select schools that match each student's individual needs.
- In response to Colorado's strong commitment to educational excellence, the State Board of Education has designed the education system to challenge academic standards. Criteria are in place for suggested grade level expectations and standards by subject areas. Accountability reports are also available by Metro Denver school districts.
- Individuals and organizations in Colorado can establish their own schools and curricula to meet special needs within established Metro Denver school districts. These charter schools are approved by local school districts, assure local control, and receive funding from the local district and the state of Colorado.