Rise & Shine: Budget battles could overshadow education issues in the 2018 legislative session

Good Morning!

Wednesday was the first day of the 2018 legislative session and Bureau Chief Erica Meltzer was there to keep tabs on the action. Don't miss her story on the lofty words — and partisan moves — that kicked off the day, or her rundown of education and early childhood bills.

We also have a story on which metro Denver districts are gaining and losing low-income students and the latest piece in our "How I Lead" series — this one featuring an award-winning assistant principal from Niwot High School.

Have a great day!

— Ann Schimke, community editor

WORKING TOGETHER (SORT OF) Colorado lawmakers started the day Wednesday with pledges of bipartisanship, but some early decisions were predictably partisan. Chalkbeat

OUT OF THE GATE Here’s a look at the education bills to hit the floor on the first day of Colorado’s 2018 legislative session. Chalkbeat

MORE MONEY The Aurora school district will have a slight influx of one-time money to spend on teacher pay and curriculum upgrades after seeing higher than expected increases in property tax revenue. Chalkbeat

ENROLLMENT TRENDS The state released student count data this week.

Among traditionally high-poverty school districts in metro Denver, most are seeing more students from low-income families and a few are experiencing declines. Chalkbeat

The St. Vrain Valley School District’s previous rapid enrollment growth slowed this school year, with the district adding 267 students for a little less than a 1 percent growth rate. Times-Call

RESPECT AND DIGNITY A school leader from the St. Vrain Valley district talks about how she approaches student discipline, what happened when a teacher observation took a strange turn, and why laughing at work is a must. Chalkbeat

REASONS TO RETIRE Cherry Creek School District Superintendent Harry Bull says his five-year tenure as head of the district took a toll on his family and his health, prompting him this week to announce his retirement. Denver Post

INDICTED Two Cherry Creek school leaders and a former counselor in the district were indicted on a charge that they failed to properly report claims of sexual assault by a teacher on a 14-year-old student. Aurora SentinelFox31Denver7

MAN WITH A PLAN State Rep. Dave Young, a Greeley Democrat, will introduce two school finance reform bills later this month. The Tribune

CHARGED A budget analyst for the Colorado Department of Education allegedly took hundreds of “upskirt” photos of 26 coworkers and nearly 100 others across downtown Denver, authorities say. Denver Post

REBOOT Dozens of staff members in Mesa County Valley School District 51 are preparing to apply for new or different jobs after Superintendent Ken Haptonstall announced a major reorganization of the administration. The Daily Sentinel

BYE HUMPHREY THE HAMSTER Durango School District this year is enforcing an existing, but-rarely-enforced policy that bans classroom pets except when they’re used for a study unit. Durango Herald