Denver Mayor Hancock and Andre Agassi Discussed Education Reform: A Good Sign?

A couple weeks ago I excitedly tweeted about a great blog piece in which four of Colorado’s leading Democrats — Lt. Governor Joe Garcia, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, and State Senator Michael Johnston — explained why they support school choice.

Then today Todd Shepherd of Complete Colorado forwarded me an interesting little tidbit of information that ties right in. It’s a tidbit that (to the best of my knowledge) no one has reported on, and hey, even 5-year-old blogging prodigies like to share scoops once in awhile. Apparently, on January 9 of this year, Mayor Hancock took a 30-minute call from former tennis champion Andre Agassi on the subject of “Education Reform.”

Some of you may be scratching your head, but there is a good reason not to be surprised. After holding the number 1 world ranking, winning eight Grand Slam singles titles and claiming an Olympic gold medal, Mr. Agassi opened a highly-successful Las Vegas charter school, the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy. The school has graduated close to 100 percent of its mostly low-income students ready to do college work.

It makes you wonder what exactly prompted the tennis great and charter school philanthropist to reach out to Mayor Hancock. Denver has some excellent charter schools already, like West Denver Prep and the Denver School of Science and Technology. But if Mr. Agassi wanted to help serve up another high-quality educational option, the city’s students certainly could benefit.

While the Education Reform phone call at the mayor’s office was the main reason I wrote this, I also was prompted to think about the other prominent Democrats who put their names on the published pro-school choice opinion piece. First, not many people know that before he was Congressman, Polis penned a foreword for an Independence Institute education issue paper.

More recently, Michael Johnston took a bold step to sign on as the senate sponsor for this year’s version of Colorado’s parent trigger bill. As for Lt. Gov. Garcia, it’s not about school choice, but both he and my Education Policy Center friend Ben DeGrow were quoted in a new School Reform News article about the latest step in Colorado’s educator effectiveness policy upgrade.

Maybe the Agassi-Hancock conversation wasn’t a big deal, but a kid can dream, can’t he? Let the speculation begin and hope that it helps lead to a winner for some Colorado kids: Ace!