We believe you should have the needed information about how your students and schools are performing.
With this information, you, your student, communities, and educators can illuminate what is going right and shine the light on areas we can improve on in our education system.
Instead of helping families, teachers, and communities understand how our public schools are performing, critical information about student and school performance, especially about students who need extra support like those living in poverty or need special education services, is not available to the public, making it impossible to know which schools are serving all our kids well.
Together, we need to turn the light on and get out of the dark. We need an honest, data-driven and objective view of our public school system’s current performance, so together, we can figure out what works, what does not work, and how we can help improve the educational experience of every teacher and student.
Right to Know Colorado is the flashlight for families, for students, and for our future.
Why You Have the Right to Know:
Your kids deserve the best. Sounds simple, right?
However, when it comes to student and school performance, it is not easy to see how well Colorado kids are doing.
Right now, there is all kinds of data about school district performance, across a number of issues: student needs, student learning, and more.
Instead of sharing this information with families, educators, and students; much of the data is not available for the public to see or if available, is not usable or accessible for families.
That does not make sense. The lack of information prohibits us asking simple questions about how different kids are performing in other schools and districts around the state. We have no idea if African-American kids in Boulder Valley are getting the same education as white kids in Gunnison. That’s not right!
Families, educators, students and taxpayers all have The Right to Know and see data that helps us identify investments needed to improve our schools.
All families and students have The Right to Know whether schools are eliminating opportunity gaps between different groups of students.
All families and students have The Right to Know opportunities to maximize educational excellence to ensure success.
The state and districts need to make this information available to all of us. Families, educators, students – we all have The Right to Know.
Our schools are responsible for preparing all of our students for success after high school. Without information on our students we cannot hold our schools accountable. We can’t find the problems and craft solutions, or recreate successes because we don’t know where they are.
How Did We Get Here?
Colorado used to lead the nation in providing information to communities and families about how schools and districts were serving students. In fact, Colorado invested millions of dollars to create tools for the public to explore information about the public education system. Families and communities were able to access information about performance that helped them not only make better decisions themselves, but to advocate for their kids.
Public conversations about who could collect and access student data arose across the state. In response, the Colorado legislature passed a new law to protect student’s personally-identifiable information while continuing to let us see information about the schools overall. But the state went further, not just implementing new rules about student-level information, but also about how information about districts, schools and groups of students is shared.
The result? A system that stops us from knowing how kids are doing across the state or compare results across districts or schools. How can families or communities know how students are doing if they don’t have this data? How can our public taxpayers know how the schools are serving their families?
We have a data and transparency problem in Colorado – and we have the right to know.
What We Are Fighting For
- Share data with families and communities so students can get a better education
- Focus on data that tells us how different groups of students are succeeding
- Promote useful, understandable and accessible data for families and communities
- Support districts and schools in communicating with families
- Protect individual student privacy
- Further research, learning and understanding about what works in Colorado
The Right to Know campaign is about ensuring families, educators and communities have access to needed information in order to help ensure an excellent education for all kids.