SOURCE: One Chance Colorado

One Chance Colorado

July 27, 2011 11:24 ET

'One Chance Colorado' to Help Ensure Every Child Has Access to Excellent K-12 Education

Broad Coalition Seeks to Improve Colorado's Public Schools With Commonsense Solutions; Website Launches as TV Spot Hits the Air

DENVER, CO--(Marketwire - Jul 27, 2011) - A broad coalition of nonprofit organizations committed to bettering public education in Colorado announced today the launch of 'One Chance Colorado,' an effort to improve the quality of public schools for every child across the state by increasing public awareness about the issue. The coalition unveiled a website and television spot to formally kick off the effort.

"Every child has just one chance to get an excellent K-12 education -- in other words, each child only goes through the system once," said Former Colorado Lt. Governor Barbara O'Brien, a member of the coalition. "That means our children can't afford to wait for better schools. It's important that we, collectively, do everything we can to reform Colorado's public schools today. We all need to get involved and demand better schools for every child in this great state."

While Colorado has taken a number of important steps to improve public education in the past several years, many children still do not have access to high quality education. In Denver, for example, half of public school children are currently reading below grade level and nearly half of public high school students are not graduating on time.

"If we implement commonsense solutions today, we'll pave the way for our children to learn the skills they need for tomorrow's jobs," continued O'Brien. "That means a stronger and more competitive economy for Colorado."

"We have an opportunity at the start of the school year to shift the dialogue toward solutions that will significantly impact the quality of education our children get. If we work together -- and I urge all Coloradans to help by signing the One Chance pledge -- we can make sure that every child has a chance."

One Chance Colorado advocates for several key solutions to the state's education challenges:

  • Invest in teachers and principals. Great education begins with an excellent teacher in every classroom and a terrific principal at each school.
  • Demand accountability. Teachers, principals, administrators, politicians and parents should all be held to high expectations.
  • Support great public schools, period. Neighborhood, charter and innovation schools can all provide excellent options for Colorado's children.
  • Most importantly, put children first.

One Chance Colorado includes several elements to support its core objective of ensuring that every child in Colorado has a chance at a high quality education.

The website, at www.OneChanceColorado.org, asks Coloradans to sign a pledge in support of that fundamental objective. The site also includes social action tools and more information on solutions to improve public schools. A Facebook page and Twitter profile are also helping to spread the word.

The TV spot that hits the air today features Jon'il, a Denver 6th grader, and his mother MiDian. In it, MiDian describes her son's experience in Denver public schools, highlighting the impact of Jon'il's teachers -- and what's expected of them -- on his educational success. The spot can be viewed at http://www.onechanceco.org/act/jonils-story.

The coalition is comprised primarily of 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to improving the lives of Colorado's children, including Colorado Children's Campaign, Stand for Children Leadership Center, Education Reform Now, Colorado Succeeds, A+ Denver, Democrats for Education Reform - Colorado, Get Smart Schools, Byrne Urban Scholars, Common Good Colorado, Colorado "I Have A Dream" Foundation, Urban League of Metropolitan Denver, and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Denver.

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