School Achievement


The quality of education provided by school districts continues to be a significant factor that supports (or deteriorates) home values. Regardless of whether you have children (or plan on raising children in the future), the value of your home is impacted by the quality of education your school district provides to it residents

There are numerous factors by which people evaluate the quality of education and other services provided by their schools. The comparative data we have provided below allows you to evaluate just a few of these factors across schools and school districts. Specifically, the data below allows you to compare and evaluate (1) district funding, (2) student-teacher ratios, (3) average teacher salaries, (3) student discipline issues, and (4) student TCAP test results.

We hope you find this information useful as you evaluate the quality of education and other services provided by your school district.

Data Source


We have prepared the following information using data collected and made publicly available by the Colorado Department of Education. Click here to access the Colorado Department of Education's website.

School District Groupings


We group school districts into one of three categories: (1) school districts in large metropolitan areas, (2) large school districts (over 500 students) in rural areas and (3) small


school districts (less than 500 students) in rural areas. We decided this grouping would be more useful to homeowners because homeowners usually purchase homes within a certain proximity of where they work, homeowners are usually concerned about identifying the best school districts within a certain distance from where they live. For this reason, it didn't make sense to compare school achievement data of school districts in rural areas 300 miles away to school districts located within Colorado's major metropolitan centers.


  • Salaries and S-T Ratios
  • School District Funding
  • Student Discipline Rates
  • School TCAP Scores 2012
  • School CSAP Scores 2011
Teacher Salaries and Student/Teacher Ratios

Updated Fall 2012

We evaluate data at the school district level because teacher staffing and salaries for each school is generally controlled and funded at the school district level. School district boards can change school boundaries and shift funding between schools to address potential funding or student-teacher ratio "inequalities" between schools.

The following data ranks school districts based on a composite score. The composite score is comprised of the following two factors -- student/teacher ratios and average teacher salaries. Lower composite scores indicate districts that offer a combination of better teacher salaries and student-teacher ratios compared to other school districts. Thus, school districts with both low student teacher ratios and high teacher salaries--relative to other school districts--are more likely to attract and retain talented teachers and provide more one-on-one instruction to students. (Remember, this is just one of many factors you should consider when evaluating the quality of educational services provided by a school district.)

District combined scores are calculated as follows:

  • School districts are first sorted by their student-teacher ratios from lowest ratio (best) to highest ratio (worst) and assigned a relative ranking. The school district with the lowest (i.e. best) student teacher ratio is assigned a ranking of "1", the district with the second lowest student teacher ratio is assigned a ranking of "2", and so on.
  • School districts are then sorted in descending order by average teacher salary. The school district with the highest average teacher salary is assigned a ranking of "1", the district with the second highest salary is assigned a "2" and so on.
  • The combined score for each school district is calculated as the simple average of its student-teacher ranking and its average teacher salary ranking.

Why rank school districts based on this composite score? Because school districts operate on a fixed operating budget each year, a direct, inverse relationship exists between teacher salaries and student-teacher ratios. School districts who expand the number of teachers in their districts (and consequently improve the district's student-teacher ratio) will, in many cases, be required to reduce the average salary paid to each teacher. Conversely, school districts may cut a certain number of teacher positions in an effort to raise teacher salaries and reduce teacher turnover. Unfortunately, such a move increases (i.e. worsens) the school district's student-teacher ratio. So, a trade-off exists between teacher salaries and student-teacher ratios.

So what causes school districts with higher combined scores to be set apart from other school districts? The biggest driving factor that sets school districts apart from each other in the combined rankings is funding. Better funded school districts can afford to raise teacher salaries and improve student-teacher ratios.

A few notes on the rankings listed below:

    Note 1: The composition of funding sources (e.g. Federal State and local property taxes) for school districts is different between school districts located in metropolitan areas versus school districts located in rural areas. (For now, we won't get into discussing the reasons why these differences exist but we will again point out that school district funding has a significant impact on each school district's combined score.)

    Note 2: School districts with composite rankings that are approximately 20% or more better than and 20% or more worse than the average composite score of the entire group are shaded in green and red, respectively.

    Abbreviations: FTE = "Full-time equivalent" (For example, two part-time teachers = one FTE teacher.); S/T = Student/Teacher

School Districts in Large Metropolitan Areas

 


School District


County

Student
Count

FTE
Teachers

S/T
Ratio

S/T
Rank
Average
Teacher
Salary

Salary
Rank

Combined
Score
1. Estes Park R-3 Larimer 1,139 65.1 17.5 3 $ 45,948 22 12.5
2. Denver County 1 Denver 83,377 3,941.1 21.2 17 $ 49,526 10 13.5
3. Jefferson County R-1 Jefferson 85,542 3,865.8 22.1 23 $ 54,739 5 14.0
4. Cherry Creek 5 Arapahoe 53,422 2,371.4 22.5 28 $ 62,239 1 14.5
5. Boulder Valley RE2 Boulder 30,041 1,308.8 23.0 31 $ 60,061 2 16.5
6. Sheridan 2 Arapahoe 1,584 76.1 20.8 15 $ 46,390 20 17.5
7. Platte Valley RE-7 Weld 1,047 61.4 17.1 2 $ 41,784 34 18.0
8. Poudre R-1 Larimer 27,909 1,268.2 22.0 22 $ 48,580 14 18.0
9. Eaton RE-2 Weld 1,804 93.6 19.3 5 $ 43,213 32 18.5
10. Cheyenne Mountain 12 El Paso 4,651 236.0 19.7 8 $ 44,298 29 19.0
11. Adams County 14 Adams 7,500 333.9 22.5 26 $ 49,212 11 19.5
12. Littleton 6 Arapahoe 15,754 658.8 23.9 35 $ 59,015 3 20.0
13. Englewood 1 Arapahoe 2,981 129.8 23.0 32 $ 53,014 7 20.5
14. Academy 20 El Paso 23,973 1,157.7 20.7 14 $ 44,496 26 21.0
15. Harrison 2 El Paso 10,775 558.1 19.3 6 $ 41,362 35 21.0
16. Ault-Highland RE-9 Weld 770 47.6 16.2 1 $ 38,856 41 21.0
17. Colorado Springs 11 El Paso 29,032 1,322.0 22.0 21 $ 45,955 21 21.0
18. Johnstown-Milliken RE-5J Weld 3,363 149.4 22.5 27 $ 48,244 15 21.0
19. Weld County S/D RE-8 Weld 2,411 116.9 20.6 13 $ 44,146 30 21.5
20. Windsor RE-4 Weld 4,739 220.4 21.5 18 $ 44,806 25 21.5
21. Westminster 50 Adams 10,069 414.3 24.3 39 $ 56,462 4 21.5
22. Byers 32J Arapahoe 563 31.4 17.9 4 $ 38,918 40 22.0
23. Pueblo City 60 Pueblo 17,711 808.0 21.9 20 $ 45,714 24 22.0
24. Weld County RE-1 Weld 1,933 95.5 20.2 9 $ 40,688 37 23.0
25. Fountain 8 El Paso 7,840 358.3 21.9 19 $ 44,493 27 23.0
26. Mesa County Valley 51 Mesa 21,746 954.9 22.8 30 $ 46,945 18 24.0
27. Bennett 29J Adams 1,044 53.5 19.5 7 $ 38,367 42 24.5
28. Keenesburg RE-3J Weld 2,313 110.1 21.0 16 $ 41,993 33 24.5
29. St Vrain Valley RE 1J Boulder 29,382 1,272.2 23.1 33 $ 47,750 16 24.5
30. Mapleton 1 Adams 8,051 334.2 24.1 37 $ 48,822 12 24.5
31. Adams 12 Five Star Schools Adams 43,268 1,687.6 25.6 44 $ 53,654 6 25.0
32. Manitou Springs 14 El Paso 1,500 73.6 20.4 12 $ 39,877 39 25.5
33. Greeley 6 Weld 19,821 855.4 23.2 34 $ 47,358 17 25.5
34. Adams-Arapahoe 28J Arapahoe 39,835 1,563.8 25.5 43 $ 51,479 8 25.5
35. Peyton 23 JT El Paso 656 32.3 20.3 10 $ 37,828 43 26.5
36. Widefield 3 El Paso 9,297 419.1 22.2 25 $ 44,381 28 26.5
37. Douglas County RE Douglas 64,657 2,474.9 26.1 45 $ 50,656 9 27.0
38. Ellicott 22 El Paso 1,027 50.4 20.4 11 $ 35,396 45 28.0
39. Pueblo County 70 Pueblo 9,107 378.5 24.1 36 $ 45,811 23 29.5
40. Thompson R2-J Larimer 16,042 655.8 24.5 40 $ 46,868 19 29.5
41. Brighton 27J Adams 16,184 598.4 27.0 46 $ 48,744 13 29.5
42. Strasburg 31J Adams 1,001 44.0 22.8 29 $ 40,164 38 33.5
43. Calhan RJ-1 El Paso 510 23.0 22.2 24 $ 35,201 46 35.0
44. Lewis-Palmer 38 El Paso 6,153 243.6 25.3 42 $ 43,843 31 36.5
45. Falcon 49 El Paso 15,478 640.5 24.2 38 $ 40,980 36 37.0
46. Charter School Institute N/A 11,756 474.5 24.8 41 $ 37,424 44 42.5
 

Large School Districts in Rural Areas (over 500 students)

 


School District


County

Student
Count

FTE
Teachers

S/T
Ratio

S/T
Rank
Average
Teacher
Salary

Salary
Rank

Combined
Score
1. Aspen 1 Pitkin 1,732 114.8 15.1 3 $ 56,329 1 2.0
2. Telluride R-1 San Miguel 806 54.0 14.9 2 $50,127 4 3.0
3. Summit RE-1 Summit 3,156 169.9 18.6 16 $51,695 2 9.0
4. Roaring Fork RE-1 Garfield 5,436 316.8 17.2 10 $ 46,629 9 9.5
5. East Grand 2 Grand 1,245 76.3 16.3 7 $ 43,565 19 13.0
6. Eagle County RE-50 Eagle 6,408 337.9 19.0 19 $ 47,200 8 13.5
7. Steamboat Springs RE-2 Routt 2,320 119.1 19.5 26 $ 50,665 3 14.5
8. Salida R-32 Chaffee 1,156 70.2 16.5 8 $ 42,134 21 14.5
9. Ignacio 11-JT La Plata 718 49.0 14.7 1 $ 40,657 28 14.5
10. Gunnison Watershed RE1J Gunnison 1,846 105.4 17.5 12 $ 42,339 20 16.0
11. Center 26 JT Saguache 623 34.6 18.0 15 $ 43,737 18 16.5
12. Durango 9-R La Plata 4,590 228.3 20.1 30 $ 48,867 5 17.5
13. North Conejos RE-1J Conejos 1,033 61.0 16.9 9 $ 40,633 29 19.0
14. Park County RE-2 Park 581 36.3 16.0 6 $ 39,119 33 19.5
15. Yuma 1 Yuma 816 52.9 15.4 5 $ 37,923 37 21.0
16. Moffat County RE No1 Moffat 2,280 109.2 20.9 37 $ 48,446 7 22.0
17. Buena Vista R-31 Chaffee 994 51.9 19.2 23 $ 42,056 22 22.5
18. Clear Creek RE-1 Clear Creek 959 50.6 19.0 18 $ 41,438 27 22.5
19. Plateau Valley 50 Mesa 508 28.6 17.8 14 $ 39,210 31 22.5
20. Meeker RE1 Rio Blanco 699 33.3 21.0 40 $ 48,698 6 23.0
21. Garfield 16 Garfield 1,126 56.0 20.1 31 $ 44,365 16 23.5
22. Bayfield 10-JT-R La Plata 1,402 73.1 19.2 24 $ 41,948 24 24.0
23. Huerfano RE-1 Huerfano 520 34.3 15.2 4 $ 36,937 44 24.0
24. Alamosa RE-11J Alamosa 2,072 99.5 20.8 36 $ 45,888 13 24.5
25. Wiggins RE-50J Morgan 550 29.0 19.0 20 $ 39,187 32 26.0
26. Trinidad 1 Las Animas 1,198 55.6 21.5 43 $ 46,393 10 26.5
27. Archuleta County 50JT Archuleta 1,371 65.6 20.9 38 $ 44,273 17 27.5
28. Canon City RE-1 Fremont 3,622 170.3 21.3 42 $ 45,141 14 28.0
29. Montrose County RE-1J Montrose 6,183 273.4 22.6 46 $ 45,893 12 29.0
30. Lamar RE-2 Prowers 1,672 84.4 19.8 28 $ 40,179 30 29.0
31. Monte Vista C-8 Rio Grande 1,139 61.2 18.6 17 $ 34,463 41 29.0
32. Platte Canyon 1 Park 1,089 46.2 23.6 49 $ 46,263 11 30.0
33. Fremont RE-2 Fremont 1,536 78.1 19.7 27 $ 39,056 34 30.5
34. Holyoke RE-1J Phillips 630 36.2 17.4 11 $ 34,630 50 30.5
35. Rocky Ford R-2 Otero 825 46.6 17.7 13 $ 34,939 49 31.0
36. Brush RE-2J Morgan 1,547 81.2 19.1 21 $ 37,323 42 31.5
37. Garfield RE-2 Garfield 4,730 223.8 21.1 41 $ 42,027 23 32.0
38. Julesburg RE-1 Sedgwick 1,154 27.9 41.4 51 $ 45,063 15 33.0
39. Fort Morgan RE-3 Morgan 3,153 156.2 20.2 32 $ 38,167 36 34.0
40. Wray RD-2 Yuma 741 38.2 19.4 25 $ 36,750 45 35.0
41. Las Animas RE-1 Bent 523 27.4 19.1 22 $ 36,123 48 35.0
42. Woodland Park RE-2 Teller 2,617 114.9 22.8 47 $ 41,833 25 36.0
43. Montezuma-Cortez RE-1 Montezuma 2,753 135.7 20.3 33 $ 37,737 39 36.0
44. Dolores RE-4A Montezuma 784 39.0 20.1 29 $ 37,066 43 36.0
45. East Otero R-1 Otero 1,307 63.1 20.7 35 $ 37,917 38 36.5
46. Delta County 50J Delta 5,355 219.3 24.4 50 $ 41,561 26 38.0
47. Valley RE-1 Logan 2,315 105.8 21.9 44 $ 38,428 35 39.5
48. Burlington RE-6J Kit Carson 814 39.4 20.7 34 $ 34,501 51 42.5
49. Lake County R-1 Lake 1,167 55.6 21.0 39 $ 36,168 47 43.0
50. Elizabeth C-1 Elbert 2,703 116.1 23.3 48 $ 37,722 40 44.0
51. Rangley RE-4 Rio Blanco 561 25.3 22.2 45 $ 36,221 46 45.5
 

Small School Districts in Rural Areas (under 500 students)

 


School District


County

Student
Count

FTE
Teachers

S/T
Ratio

S/T
Rank
Average
Teacher
Salary

Salary
Rank

Combined
Score
1. Pawnee RE-12 Weld 88 12.7 8.7 11 $ 41,824 8 9.5
2. Creede Mineral 78 13.8 8.0 6 $ 39,472 18 12.0
3. Ouray R-1 Ouray 184 21.8 10.8 25 $ 45,046 3 14.0
4. Hinsdale County RE-1 Hinsdale 81 10.3 10.4 21 $ 40,283 9 15.0
5. De Beque 49-JT Mesa 135 17.8 9.1 15 $ 38,690 28 21.5
6. Silverton 1 San Juan 62 10.8 6.9 5 $ 37,146 38 21.5
7. Bethune R-5 Kit Carson 133 15.5 8.8 12 $ 38,129 32 22.0
8. Elbert 200 Elbert 209 22.0 11.6 30 $ 39,634 16 23.0
9. South Conejos RE-10 Conejos 208 19.1 12.9 41 $ 42,028 6 23.5
10. Frenchman RE-3 Logan 202 18.9 12.2 35 $ 39,961 12 23.5
11. North Park R-1 Jackson 206 22.1 12.0 33 $ 39,742 14 23.5
12. Manzanola 3-J Otero 131 18.5 9.0 14 $ 37,445 36 25.0
13. South Routt RE-3 Routt 419 38.3 14.0 46 $ 41,830 7 26.5
14. Prairie RE-11 Weld 181 16.6 12.9 42 $ 40,007 11 26.5
15. Gilpin County RE-1 Gilpin 373 32.2 14.2 49 $ 43,879 5 27.0
16. Norwood R-2J San Miguel 275 23.3 14.5 54 $ 46,173 2 28.0
17. Kit Carson R-1 Cheyenne 110 15.5 8.9 13 $ 36,758 43 28.0
18. Primero RE-2 Las Animas 198 21.1 10.9 26 $ 38,181 31 28.5
19. Big Sandy 100-J Elbert 300 28.4 12.8 38 $ 39,247 21 29.5
20. Aguilar RE-6 Las Animas 97 14.5 8.4 8 $ 35,881 51 29.5
21. Hayden RE-1 Routt 406 34.3 15.1 62 $ 46,924 1 31.5
22. Plateau RE-5 Logan 197 18.1 12.9 40 $ 38,846 25 32.5
23. La Veta RE-2 Huerfano 226 21.2 12.4 36 $ 37,790 33 34.5
24. Granada RE-1 Prowers 218 21.5 11.3 28 $ 37,020 41 34.5
25. Platte Valley RE-3 Sedgwick 114 13.0 10.2 19 $ 35,943 50 34.5
26. Deer Trail 26-J Arapahoe 185 18.4 12.5 37 $ 37,963 34 35.5
27. Ridgway R-2 Ouray 336 28.1 14.7 58 $ 39,676 15 36.5
28. Hanover 28 El Paso 227 17.3 15.1 61 $ 39,856 13 37.0
29. Eads RE-1 Kiowa 180 19.9 10.1 18 $ 34,253 56 37.0
30. Swink 33 Otero 346 29.4 13.8 45 $ 38,266 30 37.5
31. Campo RE-6 Baca 49 8.5 6.6 4 $ 32,600 73 38.5
32. Agate 300 Elbert 10 2.5 4.2 1 $ 31,933 76 38.5
33. Cotopaxi RE-3 Fremont 220 18.2 14.3 51 $ 38,755 27 39.0
34. Arickaree R-2 Washington 108 14.9 8.6 10 $ 33,087 70 40.0
35. Weldon Valley RE-20J Morgan 210 16.7 14.7 57 $ 38,973 24 40.5
36. Genoa-Hugo C-113 Lincoln 176 16.9 12.1 34 $ 36,147 47 40.5
37. Idalia RJ-3 Yuma 186 14.0 15.6 63 $ 39,389 19 41.0
38. West Grand 1-JT Grand 434 36.6 15.1 60 $ 39,076 22 41.0
39. Moffat 2 Saguache 210 22.3 10.3 20 $ 33,608 62 41.0
40. Pritchett RE-3 Baca 47 9.0 5.7 3 $ 30,814 79 41.0
41. Sierra Grande R-30 Costilla 270 20.9 16.0 66 $ 39,499 17 41.5
42. Lone Star 101 Washington 116 16.1 8.5 9 $ 32,489 74 41.5
43. Walsh RE-1 Baca 158 16.0 10.7 24 $ 33,798 60 42.0
44. Liberty J-4 Yuma 80 13.8 8.2 7 $ 31,463 77 42.0
45. Kim RE-88 Las Animas 51 10.0 5.4 2 $ 25,901 82 42.0
46. Hoehne RE-3 Las Animas 385 19.8 21.9 82 $ 44,456 4 43.0
47. Karval RE-23 Lincoln 122 14.2 10.5 22 $ 33,526 64 43.0
48. Arriba-FlaglerC-20 Kit Carson 176 16.8 11.9 32 $ 34,504 55 43.5
49. Branson RE-82 Las Animas 452 26.9 17.9 78 $ 40,096 10 44.0
50. Hi-Plains R-23 Kit Carson 131 16.2 9.3 16 $ 32,671 72 44.0
51. Akron R-1 Washington 354 27.4 16.2 67 $ 38,983 23 45.0
52. Sargent RE-33J Rio Grande 449 34.7 15.6 64 $ 38,832 26 45.0
53. Briggsdale RE-10 Weld 162 17.2 10.7 23 $ 33,184 69 46.0
54. Fowler R-4J Otero 409 34.9 14.3 50 $ 36,587 44 47.0
55. Plainview RE-2 Kiowa 80 8.6 10.0 17 $ 31,252 78 47.5
56. Cheraw 31 Otero 222 19.1 14.6 56 $ 37,050 40 48.0
57. Buffalo RE-4J Logan 319 23.2 17.5 77 $ 39,363 20 48.5
58. Sanford 6-J Conejos 360 23.7 17.1 72 $ 38,589 29 50.5
59. Dolores County RE-2 Dolores 288 21.7 15.0 59 $ 36,807 42 50.5
60. Springfield RE-4 Baca 312 27.0 14.1 48 $ 34,882 54 51.0
61. Cheyenne County RE-5 Cheyenne 203 19.5 13.0 43 $ 33,966 59 51.0
62. Centennial R-1 Costilla 190 18.8 11.4 29 $ 32,350 75 52.0
63. Sangre De Cristo RE-22J Alamosa 316 27.1 13.7 44 $ 33,695 61 52.5
64. Otis R-3 Washington 200 19.5 12.8 39 $ 33,308 68 53.5
65. Woodlin R-104 Washington 93 10.9 11.1 27 $ 28,939 80 53.5
66. Haxtun RE-2J Phillips 331 23.4 16.7 69 $ 37,138 39 54.0
67. Stratton R-4 Kit Carson 186 16.4 14.4 53 $ 34,250 57 55.0
68. Mountain Valley RE-1 Saguache 120 12.3 11.7 31 $ 28,744 81 56.0
69. Wiley RE-13 JT Prowers 242 21.1 14.1 47 $ 33,332 67 57.0
70. Cripple Creek Victor RE-1 Teller 377 25.7 19.1 80 $ 37,498 35 57.5
71. Custer County Custer 414 30.8 16.9 71 $ 36,442 45 58.0
72. Edison 54-JT El Paso 185 12.0 16.8 70 $ 36,255 46 58.0
73. West End RE-2 Montrose 293 23.6 16.6 68 $ 36,008 48 58.0
74. Limon RE-4J Lincoln 447 28.8 19.3 81 $ 37,445 37 59.0
75. Del Norte C-7 Rio Grande 475 36.0 15.8 65 $ 35,069 53 59.0
76. Miami/Yoder 60-JT El Paso 268 22.2 14.5 55 $ 33,367 66 60.5
77. Vilas RE-5 Baca 216 17.0 14.4 52 $ 32,875 71 61.5
78. Mancos RE-6 Montezuma 396 27.5 17.2 74 $ 35,241 52 63.0
79. Crowley County RE-1J Crowley 446 29.0 18.1 79 $ 35,981 49 64.0
80. Kiowa C-2 Elbert 383 28.6 17.3 75 $ 34,084 58 66.5
81. Holly RE-3 Prowers 292 22.2 17.2 73 $ 33,546 63 68.0
82. McClave RE-2 Bent 272 21.0 17.4 76 $ 33,442 65 70.5