Through the Colorado River Watch program, more than 75,000 students have collected data for use by the state of Colorado. Currently, 55 schools have this program in their classrooms, with 825 kids actively collecting the data.
For the past 25 years, the Colorado River Watch program has collected and published data for use by Colorado Parks and Wildlife. During the last 12 years, the program has involved 130 groups – 85 percent of which are school groups.
Each month, students go out to their sites on Colorado waterways and perform the standard protocols to gather information. They gather data on river temperature, dissolved oxygen, PH, alkalinity, and hardness. The hands-on learning extends the classroom to the outdoors for these kids, and, in exchange, the Colorado River Watch program receives valuable data.
"I started with the River Watch program my 6th grade year, continued through high school and into college. I continued to follow my heart toward the water quality analysis and became a wastewater treatment plant operator. Now I am a Certified Water Professional with a Class ‘A’ Wastewater license."
Candy Burbridge, wastewater projects specialist, Eagle River Water & Sanitation District
In order to maintain the quality and integrity of the collected data, educators first must be trained to understand the regimented methods, protocols, and proper use of the equipment because of state regulations. Educators are taught titration, bug collection, and collection of metal and nutrient samples.
A grant from Subaru of America Foundation provides scholarships to help enable educators to attend the three- to four-day training workshops.
Learn more about the Colorado River Watch and the Colorado Watershed Assembly.