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About Douglas County School District (archived)

Reinventing American Education

Driven by a passion for students and informed by the latest research, the Douglas County School District (DCSD) is reinventing American education for the future. We are dedicated to ensuring that families have the opportunity to select the best school and learning environment for each student. Whichever program they choose will teach the 21st century skills they’ll need, like communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity, to succeed in whatever college or career they choose. Finally we are committed to defining and measuring what matters most.

Learn Today, Lead Tomorrow

Our motto has never been more true than today. We are redefining the way we teach our students to ensure they have the skills they need to not only participate in the global economy – but to lead it.

We expect our students to create new businesses and non-profit organizations, to bring new vitality to existing firms and enterprises, to invent new products and processes, and most importantly, to create new economic opportunities for others, both in America and around the world. 

“We want more for our students and our community, so we are transforming education.  We don’t want to be the best in the state or even the nation.  We want to be the best in the world.”
--Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Fagen


No other school district in America is undertaking the far-reaching 21st century transformation of K-12 education like DCSD. 

We are reinventing the system because we know that the century-old system was built for a different time, a time in which most students were being prepared for factory jobs. Our economy and our students have changed. It is only logical that our approach to education must change as well.

“Game changer.  Risk taker.  Innovator.  Collaborator.  These are just a few of the desired traits sought by the nation’s largest employers. Unfortunately, for the last 100 years the American education system has been geared toward outcomes suited more for the assembly lines of the Industrial Revolution rather than the economy of the future.  Our goal is to prepare our students to compete on the world stage for the college or career pathway of their choice.”

Learn More About DCSD


The Douglas County School District is one of the most innovative districts in America. Learn more about the leaders who are reinventing American Education. 


We believe in open and accountable government. For that reason we are committed to transparency. DCSD was one of the first school districts in Colorado to provide our stakeholders with access to updated expenditures.

Strategic Plan

No other school district in America is undertaking the far-reaching 21st century transformation of K-12 education like Douglas County School District. DCSD began the journey in March 2011, when the Douglas County Board of Education unanimously approved a new strategic plan entitled New Outcomes for a New Day.

Pay for Performance

Douglas County School District is one of the first districts in America to truly address the lack of professional compensation for education professionals, through an innovative Performance-Based Pay system.

DCSD by the Numbers

Douglas County School District (DCSD) is the third largest school district in Colorado and 59th largest in the nation.


48 elementary schools
2 magnet schools
9 middle schools
9 high schools
12 charter schools
1 alternative high school
1 alternative programming school
1 night high school
1 online school
64 preschool locations
128 preschool sessions

DCSD Staff
7,000 employees
More than 3,900 are licensed

Total District 2013-2014 Budget


Concurrent Enrollment
DCSD parents saved nearly $2 million (FY 2012-13) in college expenses through the District’s concurrent enrollment program.

Graduation Rate
DCSD has one of the highest graduation rates in the Denver Metro Area. According to the Colorado Department of Education, the rates have risen steadily from 81.9% in 2009 to 88.8% in 2013.

State Assessments
Annually, DCSD’s TCAP results outpace the state’s average in all grades and content areas. In 2012, on average, DCSD scored more than 12 percentage points above the state average. 

In 2013, DCSD high school students continued to increase the District's average composite ACT score. It is now 21.8.

Small Central Administration

Since 2010, the District has cut $500,000 from central administration

Utility Savings
DCSD has saved more than $16.5 million over seven years by trimming utilities use. The District is using 30 percent less energy per square foot than when the program started.