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Public Health New Mexico

APS Budget Would Boost Funding For At Risk Students

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Hannah Colton / KUNM
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A mural adorns a wall at Whittier Elementary in SE Albuquerque, one of several schools the state has targeted for improvement in recent years.

Albuquerque Public Schools has finalized a nearly $1.5 billion budget. It reflects a nearly 14% hike in state funding, even though enrollment is dropping. The new money is in response to a landmark education equity ruling.

Last year’s Yazzie-Martinez ruling required lawmakers to direct more funding to student populations the state has long underserved: students with disabilities, English language learners, Native American students and students from low-income backgrounds.

For APS, that means an additional $34 million for those at-risk students for the coming year, almost half of which will go to shrinking class sizes. The money will also go to things like wrap-around services, community schools and the district’s newcomer program.

There’s another brand new pot of money – nearly $19 million – for programs to extend the amount of time students spend in school.

The budget now has to be approved by the state Public Education Department.

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Credit Albuquerque Public Schools
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Excerpt from a May 20, 2019 presentation to the APS board of education.

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Support for KUNM’s Public Health New Mexico project comes from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the McCune Charitable Foundation, and from KUNM listeners like you.

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