Global Village Academy Collaborative

Mission, Vision & History » School History

School History

The impetus for Global Village Academy - Aurora (GVA-A) began in January 2005, when a group of parents discussed the need for a public school offering international education and bilingual education using partial immersion. The project gained momentum when Jade Amick Fulgenzi, an educational leader with 35 years of experience in international, multilingual, and multicultural education in public and private schools, was invited to organize the Planning Committee in Spring of 2005. GVA received a Walton Family Foundation Planning Grant for $20,000 in August 2005 and a charter application was submitted to Aurora Public School District on September 1, 2005. Following denial by the APS Board of the charter application on December 13, 2005, GVA-A's appeal was remanded to APS by a 6-1 vote of the Colorado Board of Education. APS Approved a resolution of conditional approval for GVA-A on March 14, 2006 by a 4-2 vote. Global Village Academy - Aurora opened in the fall of 2007 with grades K-5 and 226 students.

The History of Global Village Academy and Global Village Charter Collaborative

While the Global Village Charter Collaborative did not become formalized until February 2011, the concept for it emerged during GVA-Aurora’s second year when the Board of Directors decided that its mission and its commitment to educational reform required opening additional schools to create a strong regional network of Global Village Academies that would benefit from economies of scale and in many other ways.

The Global Village Charter Collaborative (GVCC) provides a wide range of services to Global Village Academy-Aurora and Global Village Academy-Northglenn. These include financial management, human resources management, staff recruitment (locally, nationally, and internationally), communications, marketing, grant writing and administration, fund development, legislative work, business and strategic planning, technology infrastructure management, support, data and assessment management, legal services, curriculum and materials development, and School Leader mentoring.

The following illustrates the extraordinary amount of work that has gone into developing the Global Village Charter Collaborative and supporting our schools. If the GVA-Aurora Board had not made the bold decision that they did, much of this work would never have been undertaken.

2007 - 2008
  • GVA Aurora opened in August 2007 after two years of planning with 226 students in grades K-5.
  •  Phase one renovation of the East Campus involved 25,000 sq. ft.
  •  Awarded a CDE Charter School Implementation Grant of over $150,000 for GVA-Aurora.
Professional Development
  • GVA staff attended the first National Chinese Language Conference in 2008.
  • The travel was jointly sponsored by the Asia Society and the College Board.
Program Development 
  • The school began with English, Mandarin, and Spanish.
  • The GVA Aurora Board voted to add a Kindergarten French class for 2008-2099 as a pilot program.
  • Christina Burton was appointed as interim principal in October 2007 and as GVA-Aurora’s permanent principal in March 2008.
 2008 - 2009
The GVA Aurora Board of Directors voted to drop the International Baccalaureate Program in favor of developing its own program that featured Language Immersion, World Class Academics (including 21st century skills), and Global Competence; and authorized the opening of additional schools.
Authorizer Relations

  • Submitted a project for the APS Bond Project for kitchen equipment that was denied, and worked to insure that GVA Aurora received funding as part of the APS Mill Levy.
  • Enrollment at GVA Aurora was 426 students.
  • An additional 12,000 sq. ft. of the east campus was renovated.
  • Awarded a CDE Charter School Implementation Grant of over $150,000 for GVA Aurora.
  • Awarded a $30,000 planning grant by the Walton Family Foundation to submit a charter application to Denver Public Schools.
  • StarTalk grant awarded for Mandarin in the amount of $80,000 to train 20 teachers (June 2009)
  • Active in the passage of legislation to allow charter schools to serve hot lunches to their students and be reimbursed for students eligible for Free or Reduced lunches.
New School Development
  • Applied to Denver Public Schools to open GVA Denver. The application received staff approval, but was denied by the Board of Education. (April 2009)
Organizational Development
  • In anticipation of opening a second school GVA’s legal counsel, Bill Bethke, developed an organization structure for a non-profit Corporate Parent-Subsidiary Structure for a Multi-Charter Organization (MCO).[The passage of the Charter School Collaborative Bill (SB 161) in the spring of 2010 made this approach unnecessary in Colorado.]
Professional Development
  • Retained Dr. Miriam Met as a Language Immersion Consultant.
  • GVA staff attended the second National Chinese Language Conference in 2009.
  •  Christina Burton made a presentation entitled Charter Schools and Language Immersion: Opportunities and Challenge.
Program Development
  • Implemented NOELLA, an on-line assessment for proficiency in reading and writing in Mandarin, Spanish, and French.
2009 - 2010
Authorizer Relations
  • GVA Aurora underwent an extensive review prior to receiving a five-year charter school renewal from Aurora Public Schools in the spring of 2010.
  • Enrollment at GVA Aurora was 515 students.
  • An additional 7,000 sq. ft. of the east campus was renovated.
  • Applied for and was awarded a Federal FLAP (Foreign Language Assistance Program) Grant for $1.4 million in September 2009 over five years for our Chinese. This was done in collaboration with the Community College of Aurora who, in year four of the grant, would offer advanced courses in Mandarin that GVA graduates could take while in high school and earn college credit for these courses.
  • Awarded a STARTALK grant of $100,000 to develop a training video.
  • Awarded a STARTALK grant of $100,000 to train 30 teachers in immersion skills for Mandarin. (June 2010)
  • Awarded an Asia Society Grant of $30,000.
  • Submitted a FLAP (Foreign Language Assistance Program) grant for Russian in the amount of $1.3 that was not funded.
  • The Colorado Legislature passed Senate Bill 161 to allow charter schools to form Charter School Collaboratives. The Colorado Charter School Collaborative Act, C.R.S 22-30.5-602-605, became effective August 11, 2010.
New School Development
  • Submitted a second charter application to Denver Public Schools at the suggestion of DPS staff, but withdrew it when it became clear that it would not be approved.
Professional Development 
  • Produced the video for STARTALK entitled Chinese Immersion: Lesson-planning in the Content-based Classroom.
  • GVA staff attended the third National Chinese Language Conference in 2010.
Program Development
  • Implemented development of 54 curriculum units in science and social studies as part of the FLAP Grant.
  • Selected by the Asia Society as one of the first 20 Confucius Classrooms in the United States and partnered with the prestigious Beijing Foreign Languages School. (February 2010)
  • GVA implemented a hot lunch program for 2009-2010 (following new Colorado legislation for charter schools to do so) using Revolution Foods, a company that specializes in school lunches that are healthy.
  • Implemented NOELLA speaking assessment in Mandarin, Spanish, and French.
  • Piloted the Lingual Folio Assessment for content-based language immersion with four teachers for full implementation in 2011-2012
  • Selected as an International Spanish Academy (ISA) by the Ministry of Education and Culture in Madrid, Spain. (May 2010). Fewer than 100 K-12 schools in the United States have been chosen as ISA’s.
  • Global Village Academy began hosting teachers from China as part of China’s teacher exchange program administered by Hanban, which is the Chinese National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language.
2010 - 2011
  • Enrollment at GVA-Aurora was 633 students.
  • Installed three modular buildings to provide six additional classrooms to accommodate growth in enrollment.
  • Global Village Academy Building Corporation (Aurora) was formed (December 2010) to purchase 11 acres of land for the west campus, secure bond financing, and build a 32,000 sq. ft. building for the west campus. It secured Bond Financing of $8.3 million.
  • Global Village Academy Northglenn Building Corporation was formed and secured $1,585,000 in financing from the Charter School Development Corporation to complete phase one renovation (approximately 45,000 sq. ft.) of the GVA- Northglenn facility.
  • Awarded a $30,000 planning grant by the Walton Family Foundation to develop a charter application for GVA Northglenn.
  • Awarded a CDE Start-up grant of $205,000 to assist with the start-up of GVA Northglenn.
  • STARTALK Grants awarded for Mandarin ($125,000) to train 30 teachers in immersion and Russian ($100,000) to train 20 teachers in immersion. (June2011)
New School Development
  • Applied to open GVA Northglenn.
  • The charter application was approved unanimously by the Adams 12 Five Star Board of Education.
Organizational Development
  • The Board of Directors of Global Village Academy Northglenn held its first Board meeting on January 27, 2011.
  • The Board of Directors of Global Village Charter Collaborative (GVCC) held its first Board Meeting on February 21, 2011.
  • GVCC is the first charter school collaborative in Colorado and perhaps the first in the nation.
Professional Development
  • GVA is a member of ACTFL (The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) and of the Immersion Special Interest Group.
  • Christina Burton made a presentation at the 2010 annual conference (Teaching Molecules in Mandarin or Content-based Language Immersion).
  • Christina Burton was invited to participate in Utah’s K-12 Chinese Literacy Project. She also became a member of the K-12 Russian Language Immersion Consortium in Portland, Oregon and of the Asia Society's Task Force to develop metrics for the Chinese classroom.
  • GVA was featured in an article in the April 2011 issue of The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) journal, The Language Educator. The article was entitled Immersion Education Continues to Grow and was written by Susan Reese.
  • Produced the five-part video for STARTALK entitled, Making Meaning in the Immersion Classroom.
  • GVA staff attended the fourth annual National Chinese Language Conference in 2011. Christina Burton made a presentation entitled Lesson Planning in the Chinese Classroom.
  • GVA has been a member of the Chinese Bridge Delegations. Over the past five years, nine GVA staff and one parent have participated in these 10-day trips to China to visit and network with Chinese K-12 schools, meet with Chinese educators, observe classes, and participate in presentations on best practices for Chinese language and culture programs.
  • On an invited Asia Society trip to China in the fall of 2010, Christina Burton conducted a two-hour presentation (Lesson Planning in the Immersion Classroom) at East China Normal University in Shanghai. She also became an evaluator for the Asia Society of schools applying to become a Confucius Classroom.
Program Development
  • Developed an international travel program to China for 8th graders.
  • Eight students traveled to China for two weeks in May 2010.
2011 - 2012
  • With a second building and the expansion of the French program GVA Aurora increased enrollment from 633 students to 889 students.
  • Opened GVA Northglenn with 327 students in its first year compared to 226 students for GVA Aurora in its first year.
  • Awarded a CDE Implementation Grant of $150,000 for GVA Northglenn.
  • Submitted a Charter School Program Grant for Replication and Expansion of High-Quality Charter Schools for $3.4 million. The grant was not funded, but we will submit anther grant in the future.
  • Applied for a Confucius Institute Grant for $150,000 (decision pending).
  • The FLAP Grant administered by the Department of Education ended after three years, but GVCC will apply for new grants as soon as this program becomes operational under the Department of Defense.
  • STARTALK Grants awarded for Mandarin ($125,000) for training 20 teachers and Russian ($125,000) for training 16 teachers in immersion. (June 2012)
  • A draft of a business plan was developed for GVCC as a key component in raising money from foundations and corporations during the coming year for GVCC, GVA Aurora and GVA Northglenn.
  • Completed construction of the new GVA Auora, West Campus building for grades 3-8.
  • Completed phase one renovation of the GVA Northglenn building. Phase two will be completed in the summer of 2013.
Professional Development
  • Staff from both GVA Aurora and GVA Northglenn attended the 5th National Chinese Language Conference, April 12-14, 2012, in Washington, DC.
  • Two STARTALK videos will be produced in fulfillment of the STARTALK grant.
  • John Kaufman, principal of GVA Northglenn, attended week-long specialized training in Singapore Math in order to train staff at both schools.
  • The 2011 American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Conference was held in Denver on November 18-20, 2011. Christina Burton was on a panel for the workshop Starting and Growing an Immersion Program. Kathy Duran, principal of GVA Aurora gave a presentation on Literacy in the Elementary World Language Classroom. GVA Aurora was a host site visit for conference attendees.
  • GVA staff attended the fifth National Chinese Language Conference in 2012.
Program Development
  • GVA Aurora and GVA Northglenn were both selected as Playworks sites for the year and had the benefit on their staff working with our students.
  • GVA Aurora families hosted students for ten days from the Beijing Foreign Languages School in the fall.
  • Work was launched in to start a Global Village Preschool in both Aurora and Northglenn. Terry Gogerty, GVCC’s Chief Development Officer, developed a business plan, which was approved by the GVCC Board of Directors. That work is ongoing.
  • A Middle School Task Force was created at GVA Aurora to redesign our approach to middle school to make it more effective. Michael Bacon, Portland Oregon World Language coordinator joins task force to provide consultation.
  • A Resolution initiated by GVCC to develop a World Language Roadmap for Colorado (Bill Number SJR12-029) was adopted unanimously by the Colorado Senate on April 16, 2012 and by the House on April 18, 2012. In preparation for this Christina Burton and GVCC Board members met with the following elected officials or their staffs: Senator Bennet’s staff (9/27/11), Lieutenant Governor Garcia (10/25/11), Representative Polis’s staff (11/2/11), Representative Perlmutter’s staff (11/10/11), State Senator Suzanne Williams (11/28/11), State Senator Lois Tochtrop (12/7/11), State Representative Don Beezley (12/12/11), and State Representative Judy Solana (12/13/11). The resolution was sponsored by Senator Suzanne Williams.
  • Eight teachers were recruited from Spain to teach at GVA Aurora and GVA Northglenn.
  • Three Chinese guest teachers from HanBan taught during the year.
  • The GVCC Director of Technology, implemented technology (phones, computers, internet, etc.) at both GVA Aurora’s West Camus and GVA Northglenn.
2012 - 2013
  • Total enrollment in the GVA network currently exceeds 2,200 students and a combined staff of 210 employees is expected to grow to over 4,000 students within the next five years as new schools are opened and grade levels are added.
New School Development
  • A new Global Village Academy was approved to open in the Fall of 2013 in Douglas County.
  • The first Global Village International Preschool opened in February 2013 in Aurora as did two new academies in Ft. Collins and Colorado Springs.
Professional Development
  • All Global Village Academies became members of the International Studies Support Network, which provides a framework for International Studies
Total enrollment in the GVA network currently exceeds 2,200 students and a combined staff of 210 employees is expected to grow to over 4,000 students within the next five years as new schools are opened and grade levels are added.