Coal Creek Canyon parents raise over half a million dollars to open charter school

Coal Creek Canyon K-8 School is facing closure, unless parents are able to raise $550,000 to save the school.
Posted at 9:26 AM, Mar 17, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-20 12:08:26-04

COAL CREEK CANYON, Colo. — In just three weeks, parents at Coal Creek Canyon's K-8 school raised over $500,000 to secure the opening of a charter school in their community.

The Jefferson County School Board voted last fall to close the school due to declining enrollment numbers. The original plan was for the charter school Jefferson Academy to take Coal Creek's place, but that plan was in doubt due to low funding and enrollment.

Tuesday, Jefferson Academy's board voted to open the K-8 school in Coal Creek Canyon.

“When we heard about this daunting, half a million dollars that we had to come up with in three weeks, everybody was just panicked," said Jessica Gregg, a parent at Coal Creek Canyon K-8.

Gregg was one of several parents organizing fund-raising efforts. Parents helped the charter school secure several grants from the state Department of Education and the private Daniels fund.

Additionally, they used a GoFundMe page, silent auction and pledges from local businesses to bridge the gap. Their efforts exceeded the goal by over $10,000.

Coal Creek Canyon parents raise over half a million dollars to open charter school

"It was incredible how the community came together and made this happen," said Gregg.

Jefferson Academy now has a 10-year lease for the school, but there are still questions about sustainability. Estimates show over 300 children eligible for Coal Creek Canyon K-8, but only 70 are currently enrolled.

Jefferson Academy needs at least 87 enrolled students and an additional 20 in their home-school program.

"Our goal is to continue fund-raising to get the enrollment up, because the school will eventually sustain itself," said Gregg.

The new charter school will open this fall.

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