Gilpin Montessori Public School is named after William Gilpin, who was the first governor of the Colorado Territory. Gilpin governed the territory, which was comprised of the same boundaries the state has today, from 1861-62.
While the current school building has been around since 1951, a school has existed on the current site since 1881. The Denver Public Library’s Department of Western History and Genealogy has a number of photos documenting the early days of the school that you can view from its website.
For a number of years the school was home to a state of the art Extended Day Center, a before and after school program with classes in art, music, drama, languages and other subjects taught by local artists and experts. The center brought in students from around the metropolitan area, and was at one time named one of the best before and after school child care programs in the country.
Montessori was introduced at Gilpin in 2008 as a result of community desire for a public Montessori option for Northeast Denver after the nearby Mitchell Montessori relocated to what is currently Denison Montessori. A middle school moved out in 2010. Gilpin currently instructs students from age 3 through Grade 5.
Gilpin is currently a “Turnaround” school and is receiving federal funds for three years starting with the 2010-11 school year to assist with Montessori implementation and to help meet and exceed student achievement goals.
The school was recognized as a model of school turnaround in March 2011.
For more information on school turnaround, please click here.