Our education system has gotten off track. Here in District 23, and throughout New Mexico, we have some of the best and brightest educators that any child could ever hope for.
Unfortunately, they are being handcuffed with ever increasing class sizes, little to no resources, and salaries that are just not competitive with surrounding states.
Here are a few things I would like to see when it comes to improving our children’s’ education:
- Cut classroom sizes in schools so that educators can give more attention to each student – We should be building more community based schools where even principals know every student in their school.
- Pay educators a better salary – Our educators are making roughly 20% less than the national average salary of their counterparts. If we want to continue to have quality educators in our schools, we need to compensate them properly.
- We need to seriously invest in early childhood education – We currently have a couple of “rainy day” funds here in New Mexico, with billions of dollars saved, to be used for troubled times. Investment in early childhood education is the best way we can help our children succeed and we should be using money from these funds to pay for it.
- Stop focusing on punishing our children and start figuring out how to help them – Excessive standardized testing and threatening to hold children back in the 3rd grade is doing nothing but leading to fear and anxiety for our kids. Instead, we need to figure out how to provide necessary help for those who need it and teach our students how to learn and not just memorize answers to tests.