Governor Susana Martinez announced a record high investment of $33.6 million in Pre-K programs across New Mexico – that’s five times the amount it was funded when she took office. The Governor also announced that 11 school districts will have Pre-K programs for the first time ever.
“It’s so important that our youngest students have access to early education – that’s why I made it a top priority and continue to invest in programs that work,” said Governor Martinez. “As a state, we must grow Pre-K responsibly so that all children receive a high quality education and a successful future.”
Pre-K funding is up $10 million from last year alone. That new money will allow for 11 additional districts – including Clovis and Carlsbad – to have Pre-K for the first time ever. It will also allow for many of the 60 districts and charters currently providing Pre-K to serve more students. Based on proven demand, districts like Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Farmington, and Gadsden will grow their programs; while Roswell will be able to double the number of Pre-K students they serve and expand their facilities. Only 25 districts and charter schools participated in state Pre-K in 2011—next year it will be 71.
The additional funding will also allow for 1,500 more students to take advantage of Pre-K programs. As a result, 6,700 students – a record number – will enroll in programs this fall.
“The last eight years have been an era of unprecedented Pre-K expansion in New Mexico—an initiative that has grown responsibly and with quality,” said Secretary Ruszkowski. “New Mexico students are rising because we focus on all of the above: early childhood, literacy, educator quality, meaningful assessments and accountability, and college and career access and success.”
As part of the PED’s nearly two-year long community feedback tour, Education Secretary Christopher Ruszkowski recently visited schools in Silver City, Moriarty, Reserve, Hagerman, Carlsbad, and Loving, to speak with community members about the importance of expanding Pre-K education to districts currently without Pre-K programs.
In the 2018-19 school year, the following school districts will receive Pre-K funding for the first time ever:
- Animas Public Schools
- Aztec Municipal School District
- Carlsbad Municipal Schools
- Clovis Municipal Schools
- Hagerman Municipal Schools
- Las Cruces Public Schools
- Los Alamos Public Schools
- Loving Municipal Schools
- Moriarty-Edgewood School District
- Reserve Independent Schools
- Silver Consolidated Schools