New Mexico Releases 2018 School Grades
State intervention into historically struggling schools in Albuquerque sparks progress
Albuquerque, NM – Today, New Mexico Education Secretary Christopher Ruszkowski released statewide 2018 school grades, highlighting that New Mexico’s State Plan under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) has resulted in major changes in the historically struggling schools of New Mexico’s largest school district – Albuquerque Public Schools. Beginning last summer, once the state’s plan was approved by the United States Department of Education (USED) and given top marks from several independent groups, the New Mexico Public Education Department (NMPED) intervened and shined a light on the chronic failure of Hawthorne Elementary School, Whittier Elementary School, and Los Padillas Elementary School, which has sparked much-needed changes and academic progress.
“School grades matter – for our students, for our parents and families, and for our educators. They help us celebrate what’s working for students, replicate and scale best practices, highlight innovation, and intervene in our lowest-performing schools,” said Secretary Ruszkowski. “Not only is our largest school district finally beginning to see positive movement, but the rest of the state is holding steady and making gains as the bar goes up. It’s harder to earn an A than ever before and our students and schools are rising to the challenge.”
New Mexico has consistently raised the bar for academic proficiency, high school graduation requirements, college and career readiness, and academic growth over the past several years. As the bar for what it takes to earn an A or B continues to rise, our schools have responded. School grades statewide are steady, even while our academic expectations for our students continue to rise. Although it is harder to earn an A grade today than it was five years ago, there are more A and B schools and fewer D and F schools this year than there were last year. Several schools, such as Animas High School, Texico High School, Grady High School, Dora Elementary School, Rio Rancho Cyber Academy, and Taos Academy have earned six A grades in the last seven years. And eight schools—New Mexico School for The Arts and Wood Gormley Elementary School in Santa Fe, Early College Academy, La Cueva High School and East Mountain High School in Albuquerque, Sidney Gutierrez Charter School in Roswell, Los Alamos High School, and Albuquerque Institute of Math & Science (AIMS)—have earned As all seven years.