K-12 Public School of Choice!

Who We Are

A public school of choice, RMSEL is a vital partnership of five Denver-area school districts: Aurora, Denver, Cherry Creek, Douglas County and Littleton; and a non-profit organization actively involved in the renewal of public education – the Public Education and Business Coalition. Expeditionary Learning captures the power of Outward Bound principles and research about best practices and combines them in the classroom to promote high academic achievement and character development.

RMSEL was founded on the ideals of Outward Bound and organizes its curriculum around multidisciplinary learning expeditions. Academic achievement and character development are placed together at the core of the curriculum. Our standards-based K-12 portfolio assessment system makes explicit the criteria by which success can be measured and documents the accomplishment of high academic and character standards. We place a high value on:

  • Interdisciplinary learning
  • Collaborative learning
  • Active engagement in real issues, content and skills
  • Development and demonstrations of deep knowledge, higher-order thinking skills and effective communication
  • Service and character

Our Students

The school, housed in the former Ash Grove Elementary School building in southeast Denver, opened its doors to 215 students in grades K-9 on September 7, 1993. We now enroll 387 students in grades K-12, with an approximate mix of 189 students from Denver Public schools, 31 from Douglas County schools, 104 from Cherry Creek schools, 33 from Littleton Public schools and 30 from Aurora Public schools. RMSEL serves a socio-economically diverse population comprising 25% students of color, which reflects the diversity of the five sponsoring districts.


Our Mission
As a K-12 community, the mission of the Rocky Mountain School of Expeditionary Learning (RMSEL) is to empower students and staff to be learners, thinkers, citizens, and explorers engaged in and inspired by the real world. "We are crew not passengers."