Albuquerque Public Schools

Hannah Colton / KUNM

New Mexico public schools welcomed students back to fully in-person class this week for the first time since the pandemic began. KUNM spoke with Monica Armenta, Executive Director of Communication for Albuquerque Public Schools, about how the week is starting off, and why some students are choosing to stay remote.  

Canva / Creative Commons

Unlike the class of 2020, which had virtual graduation ceremonies due to the pandemic, Albuquerque Public Schools announced Monday, April 5, that this year’s seniors will be able to accept their diplomas in person.

Pixy, pixy.org/4581580 / Creative Commons, creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Albuquerque Public Schools announced a new policy to make school more accessible for students who don’t go by their legal name by providing the option to use a chosen first name instead. APS says many students previously had to use their legal name in school settings, which became even more challenging with online classes, where names are often displayed. This can be particularly hard on trans students. 

Canva

Student athletes everywhere watched their seasons dissolve during the pandemic, but there’s hope for sports to resume this spring. In New Mexico, to participate in athletics this semester, school districts must be in the hybrid phase, where students are able to attend class in person part time. Albuquerque Public Schools Superintendent Scott Elder is calling on the state to amend the rule and allow remote-learning districts to play ball. 

Nash Jones / KUNM

As New Mexico schools got the go-ahead last month from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham to resume partial in-person teaching beginning Feb. 8, revised re-entry plans have come before districts for debate. The Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education on Wednesday, Feb. 3, postponed a decision about students going back to the classroom after several hours of discussion. Prior to the board meeting, protesters gathered outside the district's headquarters.

Christopher Webb via Flickr / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Let’s Talk New Mexico, Thursday, 2/4, 8a: Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham recently announced that New Mexico public school districts  would have the option of re-opening under several different in-person schooling models starting February 8th. But many New Mexicans have questions.  Will this return be safe? What happens if COVID rates increase? And what options are on the table for districts looking to enact one of the hybrid models?

Courtesy of Claire Porter

The federal government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic is on the ballot this year as President Trump runs for reelection in a country that’s seen over 7 million people test positive for COVID-19 and over 210,000 die from the virus. Middle school teacher Claire Porter, who’s currently on medical leave, spoke with KUNM about how her family’s experience of the pandemic underpins her vote for a different federal approach.

No More Normal: This Will Be On The Exam

Aug 23, 2020
Photo by Nani Chacon

In the old days—like last year—mid-August was a time when students prepared to get back to class. A time to reconnect with friends and compare summer vacation stories and to show off the fashion of your new school outfits, if you were so lucky. In 2020, instead of students worrying about who has a crush on who, they’re thinking about who has COVID and who doesn't. Parents are concerned with how their kids will get a quality education. Teachers are not only focused on the adjustment to teaching remotely but on the health risks of being called back to campus. In Episode 6, we hear from a panel of teachers, students in three different levels of school, a union rep for college instructors, Khalil’s mom Olufemi Ekulona, as well as renowned anti-racism educator Jane Elliott. Break out your notebooks. There’s a lot to learn, and what is covered today will be on the exam.

DON HARDER VIA FLICKR / Creative Commons

APS Will Stay Remote For The Entire Semester Albuquerque Journal, KUNM

Most students in New Mexico’s largest school district will continue with remote learning through the rest of the semester following approval Wednesday night at the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education meeting. 

Department of Defense / Creative Commons

With New Mexico students starting the school year online, many more working parents than usual are in need of full-day childcare. Albuquerque Public Schools kicked off the semester yesterday. The district doesn’t provide childcare, but the City of Albuquerque is offering a limited number of free childcare slots, and district leaders say they're working with providers to make more private options available. 

Nash Jones / KUNM

Albuquerque Public Schools and the Albuquerque Teachers Federation came to an agreement Thursday that all teachers will have the option to work remotely for at least the first month of the semester. The memo adds some clarity to a plan the school board passed last week that says students will go to a hybrid model after Labor Day if it’s safe to do so. But it’s unclear what the public health data will need to look like for schools to be considered “safe.” And teachers with underlying conditions could lose their school placements if they get accommodations to teach online for the whole semester.

John Phelan / Wikimedia Commons

Tribal communities in New Mexico have been hit especially hard by the coronavirus, due to deep social and economic disparities resulting from colonization. Now, the pandemic threatens to make those disparities worse by hindering the 2020 Census count that will affect how much federal funding goes to tribes over the next decade. Shaun Griswold, urban Indigenous reporter with New Mexico In Depth, reports tribes are playing catch-up after public health shutdowns along with geography and other factors have led to low Census response rates so far. He told KUNM’s Hannah Colton that an undercount could mean a difference of millions of federal dollars going to basics like housing and education.   

Let's Talk Remote Learning And The Digital Divide

Apr 15, 2020
piqsels.com / CREATIVE COMMONS

Let's Talk New Mexico 4/16, 8a: School staff around the state are racing to get meals, services and instruction to students stuck at home, but not all children have the tools or support they need to continue their learning. On this week’s call-in show, we’ll hear from educators about how they’re working to keep students engaged amid the public health crisis. How is the pandemic exacerbating long-standing inequities in New Mexico’s school system? How are districts working to overcome gaps in infrastructure like broadband access? What creative solutions are possible? Write us at letstalk@kunm.org or join the conversation by calling (505) 277-5866 during the show Thursday morning.

YNMG & COVID: Home School

Mar 25, 2020
Moyan Brenn via Wikimedia Commons CC

In episode 28, we talk to parents about what it's like to become the primary educators of their kids—and to be at home with them pretty much around the clock. And Amy Biehl High School Counselor Kathleen Moore offers wisdom and tips on working with your teen in this new world. 

natureaddict via Pixabay / Creative Commons

  

Albuquerque Public Schools is rolling out several new suicide prevention initiatives following a series of student deaths over the last year and calls from the community to do more. Amid concerns that district policy may deter students from talking to staff about thoughts of suicide, APS is partnering with Bernalillo County to roll out a peer support program in some schools.

Pxhere / Creative Commons

  

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for New Mexicans ages 10-34 years and the numbers are rising, especially among teenagers, according to the New Mexico Department of Health. The City of Albuquerque is partnering with the state to provide mental health intervention training to the public.

Nash Jones / KUNM

  

For the second time in less than six months, people are calling on Albuquerque Public Schools to address the issue of suicide following more student deaths. The largest school district in the state has announced it’s rolling out new prevention initiatives, but students and advocates say more tracking and specialized support is needed.

Hannah Colton / KUNM

New Mexico lawmakers in 2019 set aside funding for extended learning time, which several Albuquerque schools took advantage of this year. Now, all Albuquerque public schools are being asked to consider adding 10 days to their year, sparking concern and confusion among teachers and parents at year-round schools.

Governor Talks Education Priorities For 2020

Dec 19, 2019
Hannah Colton / KUNM

At a town hall in Albuquerque on Wednesday, Dec. 18, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham presented her top education priorities for the 30-day legislative session that starts next month. She’s asking lawmakers to set aside $35 million to make college tuition-free for New Mexico residents starting in fall 2020, and for $300 million to start a trust fund for early childhood programs. Many attendees came looking for details on how the state is addressing serious disparities in public schools. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Across New Mexico, public schools fail to provide bilingual instruction that’s appropriate for Native American students. Educators at a tribal education center in the Pueblo of Zuni have recieved a state grant to teach Zuni language in a way they say is more connected to their culture.  

APS Seeks Community Input For Superintendent Search

Nov 22, 2019
Hannah Colton / KUNM

The Albuquerque Public Schools board is starting its search for a new superintendent, after Raquel Reedy announced she’ll step down next summer. Community members can tell the board what they want to see in the district’s new leader online or at a series of meetings in late November and early December. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Parents, educators and tribal leaders from several Pueblos in New Mexico and the Navajo Nation gathered this week in Albuquerque to advocate for better public schooling. It’s been just over a year since a racist incident on Halloween in 2018, when students say their English teacher used a slur and cut a Native American students’ hair. Some say the district has not done enough to address the incident, and APS officials say there's a related lawsuit pending against the district. A few dozen community members attended a forum on Thursday, Nov. 14. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM


    

New Mexico politicians paid lip service this election cycle to a landmark education ruling about inequities in public schools. But no one was drawing a line between the Yazzie-Martinez case and an issue that’s had students walking out of classes this fall – climate change. Verland Coker, a 26-year-old Albuquerque school board candidate, makes that connection, calling out the hypocrisy of an education system here that relies on oil and gas money.

Incumbents Win Across ABQ School Board Race

Nov 6, 2019
Hannah Colton / KUNM

Three school board seats in New Mexico’s largest district were up for grabs in this week’s election, as leaders across the state are still grappling with educational inequities surfaced by a lawsuit last year. Ballots were counted Tuesday night, and voters in Albuquerque re-elected all three sitting school board members. 

HANNAH COLTON / KUNM

Voters in Albuquerque will choose three new school board members on Tuesday, Nov. 5. Those officials will shape the district’s budget and policies, and they’ll hire a new superintendent—all at a time when a landmark education ruling points to huge disparities in the quality of public schooling kids get across the state. KUNM’s Marisa Demarco spoke with education reporter Hannah Colton about what’s at stake with the school board race.

TaxRebate.org.uk / Creative Commons

The Albuquerque school board election this fall has six candidates vying for three seats. Candidates have raised tens of thousands of dollars, with the bulk of those campaign contributions coming from businesses and labor unions. 

KUNM

The Albuquerque Public School board members control a massive budget and policies affecting more than 80,000 students. Three seats are up for election this fall, and KUNM invited candidates on to a live radio show on Oct. 24 to ask what they hope to do about longstanding disparities related to race, language access, class and disability. 

Let's Talk Equity With APS Board Candidates

Oct 21, 2019
Hannah Colton / KUNM

Let’s Talk NM 10/24 8a: Members of the Albuquerque Public Schools board control a massive budget and policies affecting more than 80,000 students. Plus, they’ll hire the next superintendent. On Let’s Talk New Mexico, we’ll have the APS board candidates in studio, and we want your questions for them. What inequities do you see in Albuquerque schools? What should district leadership do about disparities related to race, language access, class and ability?

Early Voting In BernCo Makes Casting Your Ballot Easier

Oct 21, 2019
Tom Arthur / Wikimedia Commons

Early voting has begun in Albuquerque, and for the first time, voters can register and vote all within the same day. This could help historically underrepresented groups access the polls more easily.

Some voters may not know they are eligible to vote, like New Mexico’s homeless population. 

 

Bernalillo County Clerk Linda Stover said a home address isn’t necessary for someone to register to vote. People just need a mailing address, and that can be a post office box or a shelter. 

APS Parent Drops Out Of School Board Race

Oct 17, 2019
Hannah Colton / KUNM

Early voting starts Oct. 19 for local elections, including the Albuquerque Public Schools board. Its members are usually retired, as it’s an unpaid position with the time commitment of a part-time job. Those constraints led one board candidate to drop out of the race this fall.

Pages