New Mexico education department says it will cut red tape for teachers, districts – Las Cruces Sun-News

by | Sep 13, 2022 | Education

New Mexico’s Public Education Department says it has reduced teachers’ paperwork requirements by 41 percent and administrative burdens on school districts and charters by 34 percent.Both thresholds exceed what was asked of the department in an executive order signed by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham in May, which called for a 25 percent cut in paperwork across the board by the beginning of the current school year.The PED on Monday said it was adopting changes that would convert 3,500 labor hours “to time spent helping students and supporting school staff,” as well as cost savings of $136,000 per school district or charter school.To achieve those benchmarks, the department said it would cut redundant data collection requirements, “streamline processes” and “improve data systems” through strategies overseen by a new data governance council whose members will be appointed by New Mexico public education secretary Kurt Steinhaus.More:New Mexico students still struggling, according to proficiency assessment PED spokesperson Carly Bowling said the council’s membership will include representatives from various bureaus at the agency and three at-large members from districts and charter schools.Steinhaus, a former superintendent of Los Alamos Public Schools, said, “We have struck the correct balance and right-sized our reporting requirements.”PED spokesperson Carly Bowling said the department will propose IT projects, including two data management programs to process data submitted from schools and reduce time required for manual certification, as part of its next budget request in the 2023 legislative session. No estimates of the cost of implementation were immediately available.Bowling said the overhaul was planned in consultation with the New Mexico Coalition of Educational Leaders and the Public Charter Schools of New Mexico.More:Sonic funds $50,000 in classroom supplies for 53 Las Cruces teachers The announcement was welcomed by both unions representing educators in New Mexico, the New Mexico chapters of the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association, whose leadership issued statements saying the changes would increase instruction time and make teachers feel more valued.Rio Rancho Public Schools superintendent …

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