More students attend Colorado charter schools, but access still isn’t equal

More Colorado students than ever are enrolled in charter schools, and those students posted higher test scores than those of students in district-run schools during a pandemic-disrupted school year.

At the same time, Colorado charter schools continue to enroll students with disabilities at some of the lowest rates in the nation, and many parents don’t think charter schools will accommodate kids with specialized education plans related to disabilities.

Two reports out this week point to the potential promise of charter schools and changes that still need to happen for them to function like truly public schools, open to all students.

More than 15% of all Colorado students now attend charter schools, putting the state third behind only Arizona and Washington, D.C., for proportion of charter school enrollment, according to a report from the Keystone Policy Center, a nonprofit that works on a wide range of policy issues. Charter school enrollment rose during the pandemic even as enrollment in traditional district-run schools declined.

Read the full story at Chalkbeat Colorado.

Chalkbeat Colorado is a nonprofit news organization covering education issues. For more, visit

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