College and Career Ready Definitions

"The knowledge, skills, and behaviors essential to high school graduates to be prepared to enter college and the workforce and compete in the global economy including content knowledge, learning and behavior skills."


Colorado State Board of Education. (2009). Postsecondary Readiness. Retrieved from

Accountability Metrics
  • Student achievement status on state tests
  • Student growth on state tests
  • Student English language acquisition
  • Four-year graduation rate
  • Additional graduation rates (five or more years)
  • Student Dropout rate
  • Performance on college entry exams such as SAT, ACT, ACCUPLACER, or COMPASS

Source: Center for American Progress. (2016). Explore the Data for ‘Making the Grade’. Retrieved from

College and Career Ready Reporting Metrics
State School Report Card1
Colorado CTE reports2
Colorado Education Statistics3
Higher Education Districts At A Glance5
ACT scores1
Student growth on Assessing Comprehension and Communication in English State-to-State (ACCESS) for English language learners 1
CTE completers2
Postsecondary placement (employment or postsecondary education)2
Attendance rate1
Truancy rate1
Completion rate1
FAFSA completion rate5
Postsecondary college enrollment (in-state: two year/four year; out-of-state: two year/four year; not enrolled)5
First-year GPA5
Pell recipients (in-state)5
First-year credit accumulation5
Graduates assigned to remediation in at least one subject (two year/four year)5
One-year retention rates by remediation/no remediation (two year/four year)5
Credential attainment rates (in-state within two years/four years: certificate, associate’s, bachelor’s)5
1. Colorado Department of Education. (2016). SchoolView. Retrieved from
2. Colorado Department of Education. (2016). CTE Program Approval Dashboard. Retrieved from
3. Colorado Department of Education. (2016). Colorado education statistics. Retrieved from
4. Colorado Department of Education. (2015). Colorado NAEP—Other resources. Retrieved from
5. Colorado Department of Education. (2015). District at a glance. Retrieved from


Dual Enrollment and Early College High School

Dual Enrollment and Articulation

Colorado allows students to earn dual credit in academic and/or CTE courses through concurrent enrollment (Grades 9–12) and ASCENT, or accelerating students through concurrent enrollment (for students who have completed Grade 12) at their high school, postsecondary institution, or online. Students may take developmental/remedial coursework for dual credit. Public postsecondary institutions are required to accept these credits within certain guidelines (Education Commission of the States, 2015).

Early College High School

The Gateway to College National Network has partnered with institutions of higher education in Colorado to provide two early college high schools as part of the Early College High School Initiative (ECHSI), and the Middle College National Consortium and the National Council of La Raza have partnered with institutions of higher education to each provide one early college high school program as part of the ECHSI.

Citations: Colorado Department of Education. (2014). Concurrent enrollment. Retrieved from

Jobs for the Future. (n.d.). Schools. Retrieved from

Education Commission of the States. (2015). Dual enrollment – all state profiles. Retrieved from

Career Pathways

Colorado has adopted the National Career Clusters Framework and has modified the 17 Career Clusters to the needs of the state’s workforce and businesses (NASDCTEc, n.d.).

The modified Career Clusters are as follows:

  • Management and Administration
  • Marketing
  • Finance
  • Government and Public Administration
  • Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources
  • Energy
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math
  • Arts, Audiovisual Technology, and Communication
  • Information Technology
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Human Services
  • Education and Training
  • Health Science
  • Law, Public Safety, Corrections and Security
  • Architecture and Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (Colorado Community College System, 2010).

For more information about programs of study in Colorado, visit the Colorado Career & Technical Education website.


National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc). (n.d.). Colorado [Interactive map of state CTE profiles].

Career Exploration and Career Plans

In 2010, Colorado mandated that all students in Grades 9–12 have an Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP). (U.S. Department of Labor, 2013). The ICAP should include students’ courses needed to meet graduation requirements; intended participation in programs such as concurrent enrollment or CTE, goals related to postsecondary and career aspirations, career exploration, financial literacy and planning; and consideration of how family, community, and culture impact students’ plans. Each student’s ICAP is kept with their records and made accessible to educators, students, parents and/or legal guardians. It must be consistently updated with documentation or modified goals (Colorado Department of Education, n.d.; Colorado State Plan, n.d.).


Colorado Department of Education. (n.d.). Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP). Retrieved from

U.S. Department of Labor. (2013). Individualized learning plans across the U.S. Retrieved from

Colorado State Plan. (n.d.). Colorado’s Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP) initiative. Retrieved from

Alignment Between High School Graduation and State College Admission Requirements

High School and College Alignment


High School Graduation Requirements

College Admission Requirements

English Credits:

None specified (N/S)


Mathematics Credits:


3.0 (Algebra I, geometry, and Algebra II)

Social Studies Credits:



Science Credits:



Foreign Language Credits:



Arts Credits:



Additional Credits:



Total Credits:





Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) or ACT®


Colorado Department of Education

University of Colorado


State statute (§22-2-106) required the State Board of Education to adopt a set of guidelines for high school graduation by May 2013. Districts have the 2013–14 school year to adopt local graduation requirements that meet or exceed minimum standards or competency-based standards adopted by the State Board. Districts will then begin implementing their requirements with the ninth grade class of 2014–15 for graduation in 2018.

Specific course requirements vary depending on the college or school within the university to which the student applies.


Early Warning Systems
Colorado may have a state-specific Early Warning System, but the system is not publicly available.