Education secretary: New Mexico makes progress on judge’s order

May 13, 2019 | Santa Fe New Mexican

Lawmakers on the Legislative Finance Committee sought assurance Wednesday from Public Education Secretary Karen Trujillo that they would get a return on a major investment in schools in the next fiscal year.

Faced with a state judge’s order to fix a public school system deemed deficient, the New Mexico Legislature appropriated an extra $480 million for education — an increase of over 17 percent.

During a committee hearing, Trujillo offered a mixed bag of the state’s efforts to comply with District Court Judge Sarah Singleton’s ruling last summer in the landmark lawsuit Yazzie-Martinez v. state of New Mexico.

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“This is a foundation that we are building upon,” Trujillo said as she spoke about school district budgets and her agency’s first large-scale action aimed at improving student learning outcomes — expanding a summer program for elementary students and offering 10 days of extra class time for schools at all levels. “And we do feel like we are going to get results,” she added.