Mental health, equity and kindergarten in Colorado: Here's what we learned this week

Posted at 11:28 AM, Apr 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-16 13:28:43-04

I’m Denver7 education reporter Nicole Brady. Welcome to our new “education notebook,” where I will discuss the big education stories of the week and talk about the challenges and opportunities for education in Colorado.

A snowy Friday but the kids are still in school so here’s a look at our top stories on the education beat this week.

What we learned

Mental health: While state lawmakers debate whether all Colorado students should get three free mental health treatments, a new app is aiming to help high school students reengage with people and make meaningful connections.

Looking ahead to next school year: This week I looked into how kindergarten teachers are preparing for next year. Because of the pandemic, Colorado preschool enrollment fell by 23 percent in the 2020-2021 year, and kindergarten enrollment fell by 9 percent. Many families chose to “red-shirt” their kindergarteners, meaning next year’s class could be larger.

Equity in homeschooling: This week I was excited to tell the story of a truly innovative program, Denver Independent School. Founder Joyelle Naomi is on a mission to provide education alternatives and opportunities for black families in Denver. Since traditional homeschool resources don’t always consider the needs of black students and parents, DIS offers resources and support to make sure underrepresented families have the opportunity to homeschool their children.

Sleeping in: A new study by National Jewish Health found that secondary students in the Cherry Creek School District have slept more each night since the district switched to later school start times in 2017.

What I’m working on

Watch for my interview with the new Superintendent of JeffCo Public Schools, who starts her job on April 19.

As always, please email me any questions, concerns or story suggestions at