Breaking News! Colorado is the First State in the Nation to Adopt US-CHPS

Effective July 1, 2015, Colorado became the first state in the nation to adopt the US-CHPS Criteria for healthy, high performance schools, through an update to the Colorado High Performance Certification Program (HPCP). The CO Office of the State Architect (OSA) policy, i.e. the HPCP, outlines the requirements for state departments and education institutions in the construction of new buildings and the substantial renovation of existing buildings and covers projects funded by the Colorado Departmentof Education (CDE).

Working through a leadership triumvirate of state agencies - the OSA, CDE, and the Colorado Energy Office (CEO), and an advisory group of K-12 school stakeholders, the US-CHPS Criteria was adopted as one of three certification program choices for Colorado schools.

“This transition from a state-specific version of CHPS to our national platform provides the best of both worlds for Colorado’s students and the design and construction community,” says Bill Orr, the Executive Director of the Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS). “US-CHPS integrates many of the innovations originally developed for the CO-CHPS Criteria and is more flexible.”

The US-CHPS Criteria is a companion to the CHPS National Core Criteria, which states and regions have relied upon to create new, or update existing, adaptations of the CHPS Criteria. There are a number of key advances in the US-CHPS Criteria:

  • Establishes indoor environmental quality as the top priority.
  • Embraces design toward zero net energy.
  • Adds an Operations & Metrics category to ensure actual performance of high performance schools and the continued realization of benefits over time.
  • Incorporates the Operations Report Card, a benchmarking and continual improvement tool.
  • Streamlines the CHPS Verified documentation process through the adoption of a plan sheet approach that integrates with the project Construction Documents (CDs).
  • Offers the High Performance Transition Plan as a pathway for incremental improvement and recognition for schools that undertake a series of renovation/modernization projects.
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