The Road to Equity and Excellence in Far Northeast Denver

What’s the best way to make sure all students in Far Northeast Denver have equal access to an excellent education?

It’s a question that has long been debated by parents, educators, and community members for years. While it’s been eight years since the Denver Public Schools board of education approved a turnaround plan aimed at improving student performance in the region, many still question how and why all students still don’t have access to the quality education they deserve. With the 2010 phase out of Montebello High School – where fewer than 60 percent of students were graduating – the district opened several smaller, specialized high schools to provide students with new opportunities. Despite rising graduation rates, student proficiency in reading and math remains inconsistent across schools, and fostering student engagement opportunities outside the classroom has proved challenging.  With 11 different high schools representing various models, families are voicing their concerns and demanding great schools for all kids.

This blog series aims to showcase a variety of solutions-oriented perspectives from those with a unique passion for increasing equitable learning opportunities for all students. CO School talk aims to provide a place for those with the most at stake in the education conversation to have their voices heard. If you or someone you know would like to contribute to this important dialogue, please contact us to share your story. See below to explore the perspectives of those who have chosen to engage to date.


There’s one thing that kills me about being an educator in Far Northeast Denver and I know we can do better

By Caroline Gaudiani

I am a proud Far Northeast Warrior and Raptor.

That’s because for the last eight years I have been lucky enough to work as an educator in the Montbello and Green Valley Ranch communities. In 2010, I was living in California when my sister started sending me articles about the serious changes that were about to take place at one of Denver’s oldest schools, Montbello High School…Continue Reading

To achieve real educational equity in Denver, we must become better partners to the families in our communities

By Mary Seawell

Last month, the Gates Family Foundation hosted an education summit to ask the questions: What will it take for Denver to remain a leading-edge district for the next decade? What have we learned, and how will it shape where we go next?

At the summit, I moderated a conversation between Denver Public Schools Superintendent Tom Boasberg and his predecessor, Sen. Michael Bennet. One topic was the 2010 closure of Montbello High School in northeast Denver and the impact of that decision…Continue Reading


Who gets to choose what we believe is quality for kids?

Voices4Ed Podcast with Susana Cordova

The answer to that question truly depends on who you ask.

But one thing’s for sure, it’s one of the most contentious areas of discussion for just about anyone connected to the Denver Public Schools (DPS). So if you haven’t yet checked out Education Post’s Voices4Ed podcast, it’s time to tune in! On this week’s episode, co-hosts Ikhlas Saleem and Lane Wright have a candid discussion with DPS Deputy Superintendent Susana Cordova about the current state of education in Denver and her personal and professional commitment to making sure every child has access to a high quality school. Listen to the podcast.