Rise & Shine: Denver fourth-grader killed himself after bullying, mother says

Good morning!

With the release of preliminary state ratings for Colorado schools and districts on Monday, tears were in the forecast —  the happy kind and the sad kind. Districts, including Westminster Public Schools and Greeley-Evans District 6, made significant progress, while others, including Adams 14, fell short of their goals. Get all the details in our roundup below.

Also in the news: Denver's baffling drop in ninth-grade test scores, a strange discipline incident in Aurora, and the sad case of a 9-year-old Denver boy who killed himself after what his mother said were taunts from classmates.

— Ann Schimke, senior reporter

Rise & Shine is Chalkbeat’s morning digest of education news. Subscribe to have it delivered to your inbox, or forward to a friend who cares about public education.

STATE RATINGS OUT With preliminary ratings under the state’s accountability system released Monday, there was cause for both celebration and frustration in school districts around Colorado. Chalkbeat

The Adams 14 school district will likely face more state intervention after the struggling district failed to meet all of its achievement goals. Chalkbeat

Westminster Public Schools has improved student achievement enough to shed a poor state rating before a looming state deadline. Chalkbeat

The Boulder Valley School District jumped up a level to earn the state’s highest accreditation rating — accredited with distinction. Daily Camera

Prairie Heights Middle School in Evans jumped to the highest rating on the state’s school accountability system, ending a seven-year streak of low performance. The Tribune

PUZZLING PSAT Ninth-graders across Colorado took the PSAT test for the first time this spring, and the results for Denver students have left district officials disappointed and confused. Chalkbeat

GATES MONEY The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is giving away $92 million to help schools work together and use data to solve problems, part of a $460 million plan to help more poor students and students of color graduate high school and college. Chalkbeat

LGBTQ-INCLUSIVE A summer conference brought together more than 100 educators from 15 school districts to support inclusive curriculum and share resources and practices to support transgender and gender-expansive youth. CPR

SAD NEWS A team of Denver Public Schools crisis counselors met with children at Joe Shoemaker Elementary School on Monday after a 9-year-old student killed himself, authorities say. Denver Post

QUESTIONABLE DISCIPLINE An Aurora mom is angry that a teacher at Sixth Avenue Elementary took her fourth-grade daughter’s chair away on Friday, forcing her to stand in class for the entire day. Denver Channel

CHARTER ROUNDUP  A look at new charter schools opening in the Colorado Springs area as well as renovation plans or new academic offerings at other local charters. The Gazette

BALLOT MEASURE? The Moffat County school board will consider a ballot proposal to change the configuration of board seats so that two of seven switch to at-large seats instead of district-based seats. Craig Press

SUMMER SUCCESS School District 51’s first summer school program in seven years saw high rates of attendance and student growth, an encouraging sign for the program’s future, district officials said. The Daily Sentinel