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Colorado’s rural school districts are facing an unprecedented teacher shortage driven by a disparity in wages compared to metro districts and fewer teacher program candidates. As a result, the CREC has undertaken multiple efforts to counteract this trend including securing funding for and hosting teacher immersion experiences across rural Colorado and launching a rural education job board as well as supporting teachers in mastering their craft.


During the 2018-2020 school years, the CREC will be supporting two major projects related to teacher recruitment & retention:

1)    In partnership with the University of Denver’s Center for Rural School Health & Education, an immersion experience will be held in the Santa Fe Trail BOCES and the Southeast BOCES communities for school counselors, psychologists and social workers to introduce them to rural communities and form a community of practice using ECHO technology to better support students and teacher in addressing mental health needs.

2)    In partnership with the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs and the SC BOCES, work will continue to recruit and support math teachers and build capacity for current math teachers to support student teachers and new teachers.
For more information on this partnership click here.


Through a partnership with Colorado State University – Global Campus, teachers in the Santa Fe Trail BOCES were given the opportunity to earn a master’s degree or an additional 18 hours of college credit allowing them to teach concurrent college coursework. This had a dramatically positive impact on both teacher retention and student access to college coursework in rural communities resulting in 100% of teachers who were given scholarships being retained for 3 years in rural schools. Read the report here.

Teacher immersion experiences can result in up to 30% of candidates introduced to rural schools deciding to take a position in a rural school.

To see our work from the 2017 Rural Education Summit, click here.

TO learn about OUR WORK click here.