Rise & Shine: In his last year, Hickenlooper says voters hold the key to school funding

PER SE In his final State of the State address, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said we “need to be honest” with voters and tell them schools aren’t going to get all the money they’re due unless they approve new funding. But he’s not necessarily calling for a ballot measure, he later clarified. Chalkbeat

MERCY RULE The Colorado High School Activities Association recently implemented a new rule to prevent teams from excessively running up the score in high school basketball. The debate over this rule change gets to what, exactly, kids are supposed to learn from sports. Colorado Public Radio

NEW PRIORITIES Newly elected Denver Public Schools board member Jennifer Bacon sees herself “speaking a language that isn’t reform or anti-reform.” Front Porch Stapleton

BETTER TOGETHER Denver unveiled the first in a series of optimistic billboards designed by students who participate in the Arts Street program. Denverite

BEATING THE ODDS The six students recognized with iINSPIRE awards overcame challenges ranging from cancer to drug addiction to years spent in a refugee camp. Gazette

DEAL, NO DEAL A bipartisan group of U.S. senators, including Colorado Sens. Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet, said they’ve reached a deal to protect immigrants brought to this country as children. Roughly 17,000 people in Colorado are DACA recipients; nationwide, an estimated half of people eligible for DACA are enrolled in high school or college. However, President Donald Trump reportedly rejected the deal because he doesn’t want immigrants from certain (*bleep*) countries. Denver Post, Washington Post