CHARTER SCHOOL IN PUEBLO, COLORADO
Great ideas spring from experience, knowledge, and passion.
Our great idea was to BUILD A SCHOOL THAT PUEBLO WOULD BE PROUD OF, A LANDMARK INSTITUTION IN THE HEART OF THE CITY.
THE EARLY DAYS
Our idea springs from partnerships with some of the great people and programs in education.
- Mortimer Adler – Founder of The Great Books Foundation
- Ted Seizer – Brown University – The Coalition of Essential Schools National Faculty – Exhibitions
- Educational Consulting Apple Computer Corporation
- Project Zero – Portfolio Assessment
- Star Schools – Internet Projects
- Nancy Atwell – Writers Workshop
- Innovative Education Colorado (InEdCo)
- Connect Teachers who helped refine and polish our programs
John and Judy Mikulas incorporated to start a private school in Pueblo, School One. Then, with the passage of the Colorado Charter Schools Act, they changed direction. They decided to remain in public education and write their charter. They chose Pueblo because Pueblo is a city with heart, tradition, diversity, and need.
August 3, 1993
Charter #1 is awarded to The Connect Charter School by the State of Colorado.
September 9, 1993
The Connect Charter School becomes the first charter school to open in Colorado as the first classes begin for 67 middle school students at McClelland Public Library.
The following Monday, classes move into a newly remodeled building at 7th and Santa Fe in downtown Pueblo. They occupied the top floor and the Colorado Lottery the lower floor.
January 20, 1994
The first Exhibitions presentation were held at Pueblo Community College (PCC). The topics focused on Pueblo History.
February 15, 1994
Governor Romer tours the school and states, “I tell you, if all schools had the quality that The Connect Charter School has, we would be doing a great job in education in Colorado.”
The Coalition of Essential Schools visits the school and calls The Connect Charter School a force for change. The Calgary Herald (Canada) visits and writes an article describing the Connect experience. The New Democrat magazine visits and writes a supportive article.
The Connect School helps shape Virginia’s Charter School Plan. The Virginian-Pilot and The Ledger-Star to write an article on The Connect Charter School. The title was “Replacing The Rules With Innovation.”
ABC national news visits and features The Connect Charter School and the charter movement.
May 6, 1996
A team from the National Education Association (NEA) visits and states, “You have an outstanding school and our colleagues were quite envious when we shared the excitement of our experience with them.”
June 10, 1996
“Colorado’s Charter School Law came of age last week when 27 Pueblo eighth graders graduated from the Connect School – the first charter school established in the state three years ago.” – Pueblo Chieftain
THE MIDDLE YEARS
Despite large waiting lists, we work to stay small and carefully polish our curriculum and our practices. We grow to our present student body of 278 students, which is the maximum size if you really want to be student centered and know your students and community. We greatly expand our number of clubs, produce national level Science Olympiad teams, and refine our exhibitions projects to produce national quality documentaries, web pages, performances, and displays.
Classes expanded into the lower half of the building formerly leased to the Colorado Lottery.
The Connect Charter School expanded into the rental across the street from the main building. It was remodeled into a small gym, library room, music room, and a new computer lab.
The Connect Charter School is awarded a National Blue Ribbon for academic excellence. This and the 25th anniversary are celebrated with a Blues Brothers Dance at the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center.
December 21, 2018
The Connect Charter School purchased their main building at 104 E. 7th Street.
The Connect Charter School remodeled their computer networks, reviewed and added to the fire and physical safety systems, and leased a new parking lot.
Today And In The Future
Today we use our knowledge and vast experience to improve and continue to be creative. We are still an essential school and we love working with our wonderful students. We know that we teach in a remarkable public school where we can really teach, use our skills, have fun, and make a difference in the lives of our students. We touch the future and help make it better.
We remain true to our vision and mission. We care deeply and we work with passion and commitment.
VISION AND MISSION
We envision a school in which all children receive the nurturance, guidance, and resources to reach their fullest potential.
Our mission is to create and sustain an equitable, intellectually vibrant, personalized school where students receive the necessary skills and knowledge for college and the workplace.