Governor Susana Martinez has made education central to her agenda for this year’s legislative session.
Martinez said Tuesday in her State of the State address that she wants to increase teachers’ starting salaries by $2,000 a year and provide each teacher with a debit card pre-loaded with $100 to cover the cost of their classroom supplies.
The second term Republican governor acknowledged that some teachers may be uncomfortable with new evaluation systems but said the best teachers should be honored and rewarded.
“The status quo is comfortable: each teacher paid the same, every evaluation identical, the misguided belief that all teachers should be simply labeled as ‘meeting competency,’" Martinez said. “But we know better.”
Martinez also proposed hiring adjunct teachers, such as scientists who work at Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories, to teach high school math and science classes.