Skip to main content

Sky Ranch Teacher Enjoys Blank Canvas of School’s First Year

Envisioning the idea of Sky Ranch Academy as opposed to actually being in the classroom for its first school year has been a surreal experience for Carrie Kmet.
As Sky Ranch was going through its charter application process, Kmet heard about the potential for the school as it was preparing to open for the 2023-24 school year.
While the vision for the school was being established, Kmet was teaching nearby in Bennett School District and Cherry Creek School District. Her first year of teaching was during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. She had taught a variety of grades and subjects, including English and English language development, and became intrigued with being in on the ground floor at Sky Ranch.
“When I heard her talking about everything that Sky Ranch stood for and all the systems and supports they had in place, it was a no-brainer,” she said. “Being able to start a school is such a unique experience, that it was one of those things that you couldn’t turn down.”

It’s been almost two months since the school opened, and Kmet, Sky Ranch’s fourth grade teacher, is passionately working with her fellow teachers and staff to create systems and structures that will create a lasting foundation.
That starts with instilling Moral Focus virtues. Kmet said students have quickly taken to the monthly theme, such as pointing out examples of wisdom in stories they were reading this past month.
“They’re not only noticing it in stories they’re reading but also applying it to their life choices,” she said. “They’re thinking was that a wise choice that I made or wasn’t a wise choice and how can I ask for help in all sorts of things. I think that the biggest thing is just being able to take away from the Moral Focus and really be effective parts of our community.”

Kmet always knew she wanted to be a teacher. As the oldest of three children, she bore responsibility for her siblings by taking care of them and providing support, and teaching became a natural progression.
As Sky Ranch takes the first steps toward creating a thriving culture in its first year, Kmet is once again trying to set an example by setting the tone for a burgeoning community.
“The students love to show what they’re doing and how hard they’re working,” she said. “I think they can sense that it really is a village here.”
Keep up the excellent work, Ms. Kmet!

Check out a school near you!

About Sky Ranch Academy
Sky Ranch Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school in Watkins, Colorado, serving students in kindergarten through seventh grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes more than 100 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit

Visit Sky Ranch Academy's blog to read more stories like this.