Peak to Peak: Why this Colorado school is the best in the state

LAFAYETTE, Colo. – Peak to Peak Charter School consistently ranks among the best in the nation and boasts a 100 percent graduation rate. But what’s the secret behind the Lafayette school’s success?

If you ask Kelly Reeser, the executive director of education at Peak to Peak, you’ll get a myriad of reasons as to why the school churns out successful graduates. But she stresses the importance of reaching students at a young age.

GALLERY | See all 30 of the top high schools in Colorado. Spolier: Peak to Peak is No. 1.

“From the time students enter, we work on their goals,” said Reeser, whose been involved at the Boulder Valley school since its inception.

The K-12 school focuses on preparing students for college, which Reeser says begins in kindergarten. The programs are geared toward a coherent curriculum that follows and measures students’ success every step of the way.

Peak to Peak also works closely with colleges and universities to better understand what institutes of higher learning are looking for in prospective students. That knowledge in turn helps students once they enter high school and take advantage of the advanced placement courses that are offered.

Adding to the school’s success is a well-articulated mission, which Reeser says she takes very seriously and teachers follow very closely. That mission statement reads:

  • Provide broad access to an exemplary K-12 liberal arts, college preparatory education that challenges students to achieve their academic potential.
  • Be a community that values and recognizes scholarship, academic achievement, and creativity.
  • Provide an environment in which each student is known, respected, and valued as an individual of great potential and promise.
  • Prepare students to become active and responsible citizens of an interdependent world.

The publicly-funded Peak to Peak Charter School was recently ranked #34 among the entire nation by U.S. News and World Report.  

In its profile of the school, the news organization notes that Peak to Peak students are nearly twice as proficient in English, compared to the state average, and are more than double the state’s average when it comes to math proficiency.


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