Monday News Roundup: State To Release Corrected Teacher Evaluations

Jul 14, 2014

State To Release Corrected Teacher EvaluationsThe Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal

State officials say hundreds of New Mexico teachers who received evaluations with errors will get corrected evaluations within weeks.

Spokesman Larry Bahrens says the Public Education Department plans to release corrected evaluations for the past school year by end of August.

Education Secretary Hanna Skandera says the mistakes were caused by faulty data reported by districts.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that the districts submitted new data, and the state is rechecking the evaluations.

The evaluations are based on student standardized test scores, principal observations and factors such as teacher attendance or student surveys.

Announcement Set For New Medical School At NMSU - The Associated Press

State and federal officials will be on hand in Las Cruces today for a scheduled announcement about development of a proposed privately financed school of osteopathic medicine at New Mexico State University.

Officials expected to participate in the news conference include NMSU President Garrey Carruthers, Gov. Susana Martinez and U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich.

The proposed school is being described by Heinrich as a "public-private medical development" that would be located in NMSU's Arrowhead Park.

The school would be private but have links to the university, including access for students to NMSU housing, services and activities.

Santa Fe real estate mogul Daniel Burrell says he's backing the $85 million project, which would produce 150 osteopathic doctors annually starting in 2020.

The University of New Mexico already has a medical school.

Albuquerque Police Debut New Recruitment Website - The Associated Press and KOAT TV

Albuquerque police say dozens of applicants have already applied to be recruits through a new department website.

Police officials told KOAT-TV that as of Saturday more than 100 people had applied online to join the department.

The new recruitment website is more user-friendly and lets users look at salary and benefits.

It was put up after an April posting on the department's recruitment page on Facebook.

That posting, which has since been taken down, said working for Albuquerque police means "People hate you, you can't hate back."

The troubled department has been trying to boost the number of officers as it continues to deal with outrage over a series of fatal officer involved shootings and a scathing Department of Justice report.

Longest-Serving New Mexico Judge Retiring - The Associated Press

New Mexico's longest-serving state judge is stepping down after more than 40 years on the bench.

District Judge Edmund Kase III of Socorro is retiring this month, and a bipartisan commission will meet in August to screen candidates for the vacancy.

Kase became a judge in 1971, and serves in the 7th Judicial District, which covers Catron, Sierra, Socorro and Torrance counties.

Lawyers have until July 31 to submit applications to be considered for the judgeship.

A Judicial Nominating Commission will meet Aug. 8 at the Socorro County Courthouse to interview applicants and recommend candidates for possible appointment by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

The commission's meeting is open to the public. The panel is made up of judges, lawyers and members of the public.

New Mexico State To Vote On GPA Standard - The Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal

New Mexico State University officials will likely decide this month whether to raise the minimum grade point average required for admission.

The Albuquerque Journal reported Sunday that the university's Board of Regents is set to vote July 23 on a measure that would change admission standards.

Those changes include raising the qualifying GPA from 2.5 to 2.75, starting in fall 2016.

Provost Dan Howard says he expects the measure to pass.

School officials say the move would improve graduation rates and strengthen the NMSU brand.

The University of New Mexico has also made similar changes. The school raised its minimum GPA to 2.5 last year.

UNM officials say the change enhances their appeal to students and their ability to market the school.

New Mexico Contest Seeks Best Film About SpaceThe Associated Press

Aspiring filmmakers in New Mexico could see their work take flight before the end of the year.

The New Mexico Film Foundation announced Saturday that it is holding a contest for the best short film about human space exploration.

The winning filmmaker will receive $5,000 to complete their film with Lockheed Martin, which is sponsoring the competition.

Foundation President Dirk Norris says the state has always been on the cutting edge of space exploration through its involvement in the development of the U.S. Space Program.

The contest is open only to New Mexico residents.

Submissions will be accepted between July 15 and Aug. 15. The winning selection will be announced Aug. 29. The chosen filmmaker will work with Lockheed Martin to complete the project by Nov. 15.