General regulations

  • Accreditation in the state of Colorado is optional, but all schools are required to have a business license from the Colorado Secretary of State’s office to operate.

  • The Colorado Department of Education has assembled a page of detailed requirements for private schools.

  • The US Office of Innovation & Improvement has assembled a summary of regulations for private schools operating in Colorado

  • Colorado requires home schooling be completed by families and a qualified person must conduct an evaluation of student progress, or students must take standardized tests to prove sufficient academic progress is being made.

  • The Colorado DOE has no published requirements for school insurance -- consult a professional for guidance in this area.

Education regulations and resources for starting a private school in the state of Colorado

State funding sources & support

Colorado does not provide funding for private education.

Curriculum requirements

The state requires that nonpublic schools provide regular instruction in communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking, mathematics, history, civics, literature, and science. Students must also be educated in proper respect of the flag, and the US Constitution.

Teacher certification & hiring

Teacher certification is optional for nonpublic schools.

Looking for more?

Our comprehensive Starting a Private School guide includes great information for funding, curriculum, hiring & much more that applies no matter where you’re opening your school.

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Food services / school lunch

In Colorado, school lunch requirements, including funding for schools offering the National School Lunch Program, are managed by the Department of Education.

Length of School year

In order to meet the state’s compulsory school attendance law, students must attend school for a minimum of 172 days per year.

Recordkeeping and reports

Schools must provide, when requested, name, age, place of residence, and number of days of attendance of all children of school age, during the preceding month, who attended the school. Schools are also required to maintain immunization records for students.

Health and safety requirements

Students enrolled in nonpublic schools must be immunized before enrolling in school, though exemptions (such as religious reasons) apply. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment sanitary standards must be enforced – the local county office should be contacted for inspection or more information. Private and nonpublic school officials have the responsibility of ensuring the buildings used meet local building codes, zoning requirements, and fire safety standards. School officials have the responsibility to check with both the local city and county on these matters.


There are no policies in place regarding transportation.  


Nonpublic schools are not required to administer standardized tests, but can choose to, at their own expense.

State and regional associations

Starting a Private School

Want to know more about opening a school? We’ve assembled a complete guide to starting a private school, with considerations for everything from planning and finance to branding, hiring, curriculum, facilities, and more!

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We've done our best to pull together current and accurate information. Even so, there may be omissions or mistakes or content that needs to be updated. If you have recommendations for any resources or corrections, we appreciate your input so we can continue to improve this guide for everyone. 

Nothing in this guide should be construed as legal, business, or tax advice. It is important that you engage qualified professionals who can advise you on such matters, and please visit the Department of Education pages for your state to verify you are in compliance with all regulations.

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