Aspen schools: general information |

Aspen schools: general information

Aspen Times Staff Report
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” Aspen schools sit at the base of the Aspen Highlands ski area and may have one of the most beautiful campuses in the world.

The district is known as progressive, boasting high student achievement and high post-secondary continuing education choices. The academic program contributes to the development of the whole child and includes the presence of a very unique outdoor and experiential education program K-12.

The staff is a blend of veterans and new members who hold themselves and their students to high expectations.

The school district’s mission states “Students will realize their full

potential, appreciate the relevance of their education, be excited to learn, and empowered for success. This sets a tone of high achievement for all and a clear challenge to meet the needs of all students; gaining and building on their success and development not only as a student, but also as a contributing member to society.”

The Aspen School District consists of a preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, and a community school.

The school seeks, implements, and monitors best practices for student and teacher learning. The staff focuses on learning in collaborative teams. Faculty clearly defines, articulates, implements, and assesses what students know and are able to do, and are committed to the social, physical, and emotional well-being of all members. Aspen Elementary School motto is “Treat others as you want to be treated.”

Teachers and administrators set high expectations for student achievement. School climate, student behavior, and attendance are considered important to the overall effectiveness of the school. The school’s cardinal focus is on academic subject areas with an emphasis on higher-order thinking skills.

Teachers are allocated regular times for staff development, which includes grade level meetings to pool resources, and better align grade level objectives with state and federal guidelines and objectives.

Data driven goals are focused toward academic subject areas following a prioritized curriculum. Adjustments and revisions are made in a timely manner to update the curriculum to continue to address the academic needs of the students. The school will conduct self-assessments, which render information that sharply focuses on instructional areas of need. Clear and measurable goals are written to address the most relevant prioritized needs. Through these

goals, the school strives to involve students in meaningful learning


The staff have chosen to be middle level educators because they recognize that the years of adolescence are pivotal, and abound with individual potential and opportunity. The Aspen Middle School staff cares for the middle school students’ concerns, and engages them in meaningful educational experiences that prepare them for a successful future.

The middle school aims to develop the young adolescent’s mind, body, and spirit.

Aspen High School reflects the town’s rich cultural heritage and embraces the vision of Walter Paepcke, the leader of the postwar Aspen Renaissance, who encouraged Aspenites to nurture the “mind, body, and spirit.”

The school’s academic program endeavors to inspire students to become lifelong learners. Courses are designed to produce thoughtful, resilient, independent, and critical thinkers.

Typical Aspen High School students are characterized by their enthusiasm, resourcefulness, and inquisitive nature. A large percentage of students work in the community, participate in clubs, and are active in team and individual sports.

Experiential Education, International Baccalaureate, Special Education,

English Language Learning, and Vocational Education courses support the district’s standard curriculum to meet the needs and expectations of all learners so that they may pursue a rigorous, purposeful, and enriching education.

0235 High School Road

Aspen, Colo. 81611

Phone: (970) 925-3760

Fax: (970)925-5721

The Aspen Community School in Woody Creek is a charter school of the Aspen School District that has been providing progressive educational opportunities to K-8 students since 1970.

Designed as a small student-teacher ratio combined with an integrated, thematic curriculum provides a unique and effective way to meet the goals of lifelong learning, social justice, community participation, and personal responsibility.

The K-8 school body is under 125 students, with a low student-to-teacher ratio that fosters close relationships among students and staff.

The Aspen Community School is a public school, charges no tuition, and reflects the Aspen School District’s commitment to educational choice.

The curriculum at the Aspen Community School consists of core subjects that are taught daily, and integrated cross-age themes that spiral in throughout the year. Core subjects include: language arts, math, wellness/social emotional development and the arts. Spiral subjects include: science, social studies, Spanish and outdoor education.

Core subjects are taught using a variety of techniques including direct

teacher instruction, inquiry-based exploration, cooperative group learning and individualized instruction. Classes are aligned to Colorado state standards.

Aspen Community School:

1199 Woody Creek Road

Post Office Box 336

Woody Creek, Colorado 81656

Phone: (970) 923-4646

Fax: (970) 923-7380

The CMC Aspen campus, located next to the Aspen Business Center, provides space for arts and academics. It specializes in computers, liberal arts and fine art. You can also study outdoor education and emergency medical technology (EMT). Certification for real estate sales or CISCO networking also is offered.

Opened in January 2001, the Morgridge Family Academic Center blends bold geometry with distinctive shed roofs reminiscent of the community’s ranching heritage. The 34,000-square-foot building includes classrooms, computer labs, “smart rooms,” exhibition spaces and art studios. This facility also is home to the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, artist-in-residence at Colorado Mountain College.

The Aspen campus is a “community campus,” primarily serving working adults who live nearby. The campus does not provide residential facilities, and so does not offer the opportunities for traditional campus life found at the other three residential campuses.

The Aspen Campus employs a limited number of full-time faculty, and offers degree and certificate programs for full-time students.

The Aspen college campus overlooks three skiing and snowboarding mountains ” Aspen Mountain, Highlands and Buttermilk. As an international resort, the Aspen area also offers unusual opportunities for students to combine classroom study with work experience at local businesses.

Colorado Mountain College, Aspen Campus

0255 Sage Road

Aspen, CO 81611

(970) 925-7740

Aspen Country Day:

Waldorf School on the Roaring Fork:

Aspen School for the Deaf: