What is Blueprint APS?

Aurora Public Schools is a district of momentum, opportunity and impact. As we build on our momentum, we have an exciting opportunity to look to the future together.  All of us want to ensure that our students have the educational opportunities and school facilities necessary to shape successful futures. We also recognize that Aurora is changing and growing in a way that will impact our schools and community.

It’s going to take all of us putting together great ideas to imagine and design our new comprehensive, long-term educational and facilities plan: Blueprint APS.

Blueprint APS will be developed through an extensive community engagement process to envision how we best serve our students and community moving forward. 

Blueprint APS is not a new strategic plan. Rather, it is a plan focused on our facilities and educational systems that will support the ongoing and existing implementation of our current strategic plan, APS 2020, and future strategic plans. 

We are currently working on Phase 2 of the process to develop Blueprint APS. We are excited to hear the voices of our students, families, staff and community members as we look to the future!

Latest News

Blueprint APS Phase 2 Open Houses and Online Survey Now Available

As part of Phase 2 of Blueprint APS, the Aurora Public Schools Board of Education is asking for your feedback on five community-developed scenarios. Each has a unique approach to how APS could serve its community in the future.

Join us to share your views at one of the community open houses below:

  • Saturday, Feb. 23 10 a.m. @ Aurora Central H.S.
  • Wednesday, Feb. 27 4:30 p.m. @ Rangeview H.S.
  • Tuesday, March 12 6 p.m. @ Murphy Creek P-8

View the handouts with scenarios to be used at the community open houses.
(or choose one of the other languages below)

Are you unable to participate in a Community Open House? Please take the survey below!


Blueprint APS Phase 1 Final Report

The Blueprint APS: Phase 1-Scenario Development Final Report details the background research, analysis and community engagement that was completed in Phase One. It also outlines the five community-developed scenarios that present unique paths to serving the APS community. You may view and/or download the full report below.


Blueprint APS Scenarios Presented to APS Board of Education

The Blueprint APS scenarios were presented to the APS Board of Education on Dec. 18, wrapping up Phase 1 of the process. The proposed scenarios address many key aspects of how our school and district structures and programming should support student learning, provide choices for families and most effectively make use of the district's limited funding. Each scenario overview presented included some implementation considerations along with pros and cons. You may view the presentation below. An additional detailed report will be released in mid-January.

Scenario Overview

View detailed discussions of each scenario below.

 

How Can I Provide Input?

As part of Phase 2 of Blueprint APS, the Aurora Public Schools Board of Education is asking for your feedback on five community-developed scenarios. Each has a unique approach to how APS could serve its community in the future.

Share what you would be most excited about! Do you prefer smaller elementary schools and larger secondary schools? What about more charter schools? Arts-focused or STEM-focused programs? Are sports or magnet schools important to you? How should APS work with local businesses to shape learning opportunities for students?

Join us to share your views at one of the community open houses below:

Community Open Houses

  • Saturday, Feb. 23 10 a.m. @ Aurora Central H.S.
  • Wednesday, Feb. 27 4:30 p.m. @ Rangeview H.S.
  • Tuesday, March 12 6 p.m. @ Murphy Creek P-8

View the handouts with scenarios to be used at the community open houses.
(or choose one of the other languages below)

Food and childcare will be provided.

If you require interpretation in a language other than Spanish, please call 303-365-7805.

Are you unable to participate in a Community Open House? Please take the survey below!

Online Survey for Phase 2


 

 

Archived Information from Phase 1

The Aurora community has multiple opportunities to provide input in Phase 1 of Blueprint APS. The input collected will be used to inform the development of the possible scenarios by the "What IF" Task Force.

Community Forums

Thanks to those who joined us at the recent Blueprint APS community forums. We appreciate your input!

    • Sept. 5 @ Rangeview H.S.
    • Sept. 6 @ Vista PEAK Preparatory
    • Sept. 15 @ AWCPA
    • Sept. 17 @ Mrachek M.S.

Language services and child care were provided. Each community meeting began with a large group presentation and poll to gauge opinions on topics related to APS’ future. Following the large group polls, participants were invited to break out into small group discussions to offer additional input in an informal setting. The community meetings were professionally facilitated by MGT Consulting.

Were you unable to attend a Community Forum? Please take the survey below!

Online Survey for Phase 1
Thank you for your survey responses for Phase 1. Our survey window closed on Sept. 24.

Open Houses: Schedule and Childcare

Phase 2 Community Open Houses

  • Saturday, Feb. 23 10 a.m. @ Aurora Central H.S.
  • Wednesday, Feb. 27 4:30 p.m. @ Rangeview H.S.
  • Tuesday, March 12 6 p.m. @ Murphy Creek P-8

View the handouts with scenarios to be used at the community open houses.
(or choose one of the other languages below)

Food and childcare will be provided.

If you require interpretation in a language other than Spanish, please call 303-365-7805.

Are you unable to participate in a Community Open House? Please take the survey below!

Online Survey for Phase 2


 

 

 

Archived Phase 1 Community Forum Information

Thanks to those who joined us at the recent Blueprint APS community forums. We appreciate your input!

    • Sept. 5 @ Rangeview H.S.
    • Sept. 6 @ Vista PEAK Preparatory
    • Sept. 15 @ AWCPA
    • Sept. 17 @ Mrachek M.S.

Language services and child care were provided. Each community meeting began with a large group presentation and poll to gauge opinions on topics related to APS’ future. Following the large group polls, participants were invited to break out into small group discussions to offer additional input in an informal setting. The community meetings were professionally facilitated by MGT Consulting.

Were you unable to attend? Please complete our online survey to share your views! 

Online Survey
Thank you for your survey responses. Our survey window closed on Sept. 24.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Blueprint APS?

Blueprint APS is a process to engage the Aurora community in developing a long-term educational and facilities plan that responds to the changing demographics of the district and educational programming needs. Blueprint APS is not a new strategic plan. Rather, it is a plan around our facilities and educational systems that will support the ongoing and existing implementation of APS 2020 and future strategic plans.






Why do we need it?

APS' operational facilities plans are now outdated and Aurora is changing. After many years of rapidly increasing enrollment, APS has started to see a decline in overall enrollment for the past few years especially in Northwest Aurora. Many factors are causing this enrollment shift including declining birth rates and the rising cost of living that is forcing families to move out of the area. Simultaneously, the district is seeing increased enrollment in the eastern part of the district with many new housing developments along the E-470 corridor.

APS has also experienced shifts in the types of schools in which students are enrolling. While neighborhood schools have historically been the top choice for families, a growing percentage are choosing other options. In light of these now outdated plans and the changing district, the APS community has an opportunity to intentionally and proactively plan for the future.

 






What questions might Blueprint APS explore?

Below is a list of overarching questions Blueprint APS may explore. These questions provide a foundation for the work of Blueprint APS

  • What does the system of schools that serve students within APS boundaries look like to ensure equitable opportunities for all our students?
  • What does the system of traditional schools look like to ensure equity of educational opportunities across the entire district in service of the APS 2020 goals and goals of future strategic plans?
  • How should APS meet the demands of growing enrollment in some parts of the district, particularly in areas with new developments?
  • How should APS respond to schools that are seeing declining enrollment as a result of a number of factors?
  • What types of instructional opportunities should the district offer for students?
  • How should APS plan for and fund new facilities or modify existing facilities to support that system and in light of anticipated and unanticipated changes?
  • What is the relationship between APS and charter schools?






How can I provide input?

During Phase 2, the APS Board of Education is asking for your feedback through three different ways. First, board members are meeting with various school and community groups throughout the district to hear from stakeholders about the community-developed scenarios. There is also an online survey that is available on the Blueprint APS website. Lastly, Board members will host three open houses to hear from community members.


The Aurora community was provided with multiple opportunities to provide input in Phase I of Blueprint APS.

First, there were four community meetings in September. Each community meeting began with a large group presentation and poll to gauge opinions on topics related to APS’ future. Following the large group polls, participants were invited to break out into small group discussions where participants ofered additional input in an informal setting. The community meetings were professionally facilitated and the input informed the work of the “What IF” Task Force.

Second, there was an online survey through which students, families, staff and community members provided input. The survey ran in September 2018, about the same time as the community meetings.






Who will decide on what paradigm or scenario APS moves forward with?

In Phase 1, the possible future scenarios for APS were developed by community members on the Task Forces based on input gathered from students, families, staff and community members. The Board of Education will consider this input when determining which scenario APS should move forward with during Phase 2.

 






Why are there not cost estimates attached to every scenario?

Each scenario contains high-level implementation requirements that will need further analysis and planning prior to estimating costs. Implementation requirements may include policy changes, curriculum development, reconfiguring buildings, etc.

 






What are the next steps?

Tollgate StudentThe Board will discuss next steps for Phase 2 of Blueprint APS at its March 19 meeting at the APS Professional Learning and Conference Center at 6 p.m.

At the end of Phase 2, the Board will make a decision on the best scenario for the district moving forward. This does not necessarily mean picking one scenario. They may take some elements of one and combine it with others.

After Phase 2, APS staff will begin implementation, which may require extensive policy, budget and staffing changes as well as reconfiguring buildings and changing transportation routes.

 






Why did APS work with an external support partner for Phase 1 of Blueprint APS?

APS has followed similar engagement processes to successfully execute projects with this level of public engagement and complexity, such as the strategic budget redesign and the APS 2020 strategic plan development. In developing APS 2020, the district worked with a consultant to lead the process and synthesize the input, while the ideas and resulting strategic plan ultimately came from the community.

APS hired MGT Consulting to support APS in Phase 1 of this process. MGT consulting brings: 

  • Necessary capacity to develop and facilitate the Blueprint APS process
  • Expertise in public engagement, facilitating work groups and driving similar processes around the country to answer critical planning questions
  • Content expertise in the areas of educational programming, facilities and systems thinking
  • A neutral perspective that allows the voice of the community to drive Blueprint APS

 

 






What focus groups were conducted in Phase 1?

Small focus groups of approximately 10-15 people were conducted during Phase 1 to gather the perspectives of the following groups:

    • Students
    • Parents
    • Licensed employees (e.g., teachers, special service providers)
    • Classified employees
    • Administration and Professional Technical employees
    • Community Partners
    • Realtors, Developers and Builders

The focus groups brought together a range of perspectives that represented different school types, school grade spans, geographic regions of the district and roles.

 






Who was interviewed in Phase 1?

MGT Consulting interviewed leaders from across Aurora including from: Colorado State Legislature, City of Aurora, Aurora City Council, APS Board of Education, Buckley Air Force Base, Community College of Aurora, University of Colorado-Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora Chamber of Commerce, CSU-Global and Colorado League of Charter Schools.

 






Blueprint APS includes a multi-phased process that incorporates extensive community input. View details by hovering over the three phases below:

Engage the community in identifying potential scenarios for how APS can best serve students moving forward by aligning its educational vision and facilities plan

Consideration of all possible scenarios from Phase 1

AND

Determination of the best scenario for APS moving forward to Phase 3

Implement APS’ approach to best serving its students moving forward, including making any adjustments in policies and practices to align with the selected scenario

Phase 1: Paradigm Development (May-Dec. 2018)

In collaboration with APS stakeholders, Phase 1 of Blueprint APS will develop a series of possible scenarios for how APS can best serve our community moving forward. These scenarios will identify potential paths for aligning our educational vision with our physical environment by taking into account the voices of our community, the district’s recent and projected enrollment data and the changing Aurora landscape. Each scenario will also be accompanied by a high-level plan for implementation of each possible scenario.

Phase 1 will not produce a recommendation for any one scenario. Instead, it will create a range of scenarios for consideration in Phase 2. Phase 1 will culminate with a report to the Board of Education in December 2018.

APS has hired MGT of America Consulting, LLC, a national public-sector consulting firm, that works with districts nationwide on facilities plans, paradigm development and educational systems planning to facilitate Phase 1 of Blueprint APS.

Community Input

Possible scenarios will be based on input and information collected from students, parents, staff, and the community on its values, the current state of Aurora and APS and how APS can best serve students moving forward. These perspectives will be collected through many different channels including community forums, an online survey, focus groups, interviews and task forces.

Task Forces

Two task forces, comprised of community stakeholders and staff , will serve as the work groups for Phase 1: 1) the What IF Task Force, and 2) the What THEN Task Force, will be responsible for the development of the possible scenarios and high-level implementation plans based on community input.

The What IF Task Force will develop possible scenarios on how to meet our future educational and facility needs. The What IF Task Force will examine local community data, national educational trends and input from community stakeholders to develop the scenarios.  

The What THEN Task Force will be responsible for identifying the steps necessary to bring each possible scenario to reality. 

Click the diagram above to enlarge






Phase 2: Paradigm Selection (Winter / Spring 2019)

During Phase 2 of Blueprint APS, the APS Board of Education will consider the scenarios developed in Phase 1 and work to determine the scenario that best aligns with the community’s dreams, hopes and aspirations for its students. More details will be provided as they become available.

Phase 2 will occur in Winter/Spring 2019.






Phase 3: Paradigm Implementation (Spring 2019)

In Phase 3, the APS Board of Education and school and district leaders will work together to implement the selected scenario. The timeline for Phase 3 is anticipated to begin in Spring 2019, with additional details available once a scenario is selected in Phase 2.






Next Steps: Phases 2 and 3

During Phase 2 of Blueprint APS, the APS Board of Education will consider the scenarios developed in Phase I. Working in conjunction with community stakeholders, the APS Board of Education will determine the scenario that is best for APS' future. Phase 2 will occur in Winter/Spring 2019, with more details to follow.

In Phase 3, the APS Board of Education and school and district leaders will implement the selected scenario. Phase 3 will begin following Phase 2, with an anticipated launch in Spring 2019.