6/30 Education Digest

N.M. teachers getting paid more
New Mexico’s teachers are getting paid more, according to a press release from the National Education Association of New Mexico. The movement for higher pay for New Mexico educators began with education reform legislation signed by Gov. Bill Richardson in 2003. New Mexico’s teachers have since climbed the nation’s salary ladder, moving from 46th in 2000-2001 to 41st in 2004-2005, the press release said.

CHS graduate awarded scholarship
Brooke Balch, formerly of Clovis High School, is a recipient of the New Mexico Public Education Department 2005-2006 Robert C. Byrd Scholarship, according to www.ped.state.nm.us. Balch said she will attend Texas Tech University in the fall to major in pre-occupational therapy. As a scholarship recipient, she will receive an annual award of $1,500 for up to four years of her college career. Recipients were selected from among 175 applicants in the state based on their academic records and scores from college assessment tests, according to a New Mexico Public Education Department news release.

Governor announces new programs
The office of Governor Bill Richardson and Lt. Gov. Diane Denish announced 28 new or expanded programs in 23 communities across the state under New Mexico’s Pre-K initiative, according to a press release from their offices.

However, neither the Clovis Municipal School or any Curry County or Clovis private entities applied for funding under the state program, said public information officer for the governor Gilbert Gallegos. Gallegos said 5 municipal districts were denied funding. He said the governor plans to expand the program in the coming months because “there is more demand than money available.”

The goal of the program, he said, is to expand access to pre-kindergarten to include all four-year-olds in the state.

Education Digest is compiled by CNJ staff writer Marlena Hartz. She may be contacted at 763-6991, or by e-mail: marlena_hartz@link.freedom.com