Under Colorado law, the State Board of Education has a duty to promulgate and adopt policies, rules, and regulations concerning general supervision of the public schools, the Department of Education, and educational programs maintained and operated by all state governmental agencies for persons who have not completed the twelfth-grade level of instruction.
Rulemaking by the State Board of Education
The Colorado Administrative Procedures Act (APA) governs the legal and procedural requirements that the State Board of Education (Board) must follow when promulgating rules. Before the Board initiates any rulemaking, the Colorado General Assembly must first pass legislation authorizing the Board to implement the legislation through rule.
Once the General Assembly authorizes the Board to promulgate rules, Department of Education staff draft new rules or revisions to existing rules. As part of this process, staff reaches out to interested stakeholders to receive input and comment. At a regularly scheduled public board meeting, staff presents the proposed rules to the State Board and requests that the Board initiate the formal rulemaking process. To initiate the formal rulemaking process, the Board votes to approve a notice of rulemaking hearing, which must be filed with the Colorado Secretary of State for publication in the Colorado Register and, in that notice, identifies a date for a public rulemaking hearing. While not required by the APA, once the State Board initiates a Notice of Rulemaking, copies of the rules, along with the notice of the hearing date, are e-mailed to all superintendents, BOCES directors, and other interested parties.
Prior to the rulemaking, the draft of the rules or rule revisions are available to the public and members of the public are encouraged to submit written comments to the State Board on the draft rules. During the rulemaking hearing, the public may submit written or oral testimony about the proposed rules, expressing concerns, support, opposition, proposed changes, amendments or other matters concerning the rules. The Board then determines whether to make any changes to the draft rules and, after finalizing the draft rules, votes on whether to adopt them.
After rules are adopted, the APA requires that the Board submit the adopted rules to the Office of the Attorney General, so that the Attorney General may review the rules and issue an opinion concerning their legality. If the Attorney General does not issue an opinion affirming the rules within 20 days, the rules will not become effective. Following the issuance of the Attorney General’s rule opinion, thee rules become effective after being published in the Colorado Registrar and are then submitted to the Office of Legislative Legal Services (OLLS) for additional review for compliance with statute.
The OLLS reviews the new rules to determine whether the rules conform with the scope of the authorizing legislation and do not otherwise exceed the Board’s authority. When the OLLS identifies a legal concern with the rule, the rule is then reviewed at a public hearing by the Committee on Legal Services (a standing committee comprised of members of the Colorado General Assembly). At the Committee on Legal public hearing, members of the public may provide testimony concerning the rules. If the Committee on Legal Services determines that any rules exceed the scope of the Board’s authority or are otherwise legally problematic, the Committee will submit those rules to the legislature so that those rules will be non-renewed via legislative action. For a visual describing the Board’s rulemaking process, please see here.
For a schedule of the Board’s anticipated rulemaking for 2015, please see here.
Ongoing Administrative Review of State Board of Education Rules
Pursuant to section 24-4-103.3, C.R.S., each state agency is required to establish a schedule for the review of all of its existing rules. The purpose of that review is to assess the continuing need for and the appropriateness and cost-effectiveness of the agency’s rules to determine if they should be continued in their current form, modified, or repealed.
Policy for Review of State Board Rules establishes a protocol for the Colorado Department of Education to follow in reviewing the Board’s existing rules and to make recommendations to the Board concerning its findings. A schedule for the ongoing review of the rules and supporting templates are included.
Rules Recently Adopted by the State Board of Education
The rules below have recently been adopted by the Board. These rules, along with all other rules previously adopted by the board, are officially published in the Code of Colorado Regulations (CCR) along with the administrative regulations of all executive departments and agencies of the State of Colorado.
- Rules for the Administration of the Colorado School Awards Program
- Colorado Minimum Starndards Governing School Transportation Vehicles
These and all other rules adopted by the Board are posted on the Secretary of State's website, www.sos.state.co.us. Please click on "Colorado State Board of Education" for a complete set of the rules by subject. For assistance, please contact Carey Taylor Markel, Director of State Board Relations at (303) 866-6809, or Markel_C@cde.state.co.us.
For questions about the content of present rules, proposed amendments, new rules, Board hearings, or rule history, contact the State Board Relations Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.