The state of New Mexico will officially be adopting the SAT as the new standardized test for high school juniors starting this spring.
The Associated Press reports that a special task force was created by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham to find a replacement for the previous PARCC assessment test. The group reportedly gave its recommendations and Public Education Secretary Ryan Stewart announced that the state would be adopting the SAT as the official high school assessment test.
Stewart said the test is accepted at all New Mexico universities and colleges. “In administering the SAT, we are paying for students’ college entrance exams for the first time ever, effectively removing one major barrier to college entrance for thousands of New Mexico students,” Stewart said in a statement.
PED is expected to reveal new standardized tests for other high school students and those in grades three through eight this week.
A transition test administered last spring reportedly showed that around 80 percent of New Mexico students weren’t proficient in math and 67 percent weren’t proficient in reading.
CYFD Task Force to Include Teacher
Last week, the New Mexico Children Youth and Families Department (CYFD) announced that it would be making changes to a new task force a mere day after the task force was introduced to the public.
According to KRQE, the agency acknowledged that a mistake had been made after it announced the creation of a new task force meant to increase CYFD transparency and better protect children in foster care. Immediately, lawmakers and advocate groups pointed out that the department had failed to include any educators in the group, despite the specific requirement in House Joint Memorial 10—which created the task force—that teachers be involved.
CYFD says it made a mistake and is now reviewing applications that were submitted by educators. Six teachers reportedly applied to join the task force. A statement from CYFD said it would be choosing a single teacher to add to its ranks.
The task force's first meeting will be in November. The department says it will choose a teacher before that time.
ART to Start in Winter
The city plans to have the Albuquerque Rapid Transit (ART) system running sometime this winter.
According to KOAT, city spokesperson Alicia Manzano was hesitant to give an exact date when residents will begin seeing the buses. “When we issue that launch date, we want it to be in full service," Manzano said.
ART has had a number of issues since the project was initiated by former mayor Richard J. Berry. Last year, Mayor Tim Keller ended the city’s contract with BYD, the original bus manufacturer contracted to provide electric buses for ART, for failing to meet contractual obligations and delivering unsafe and dysfunctional buses.
Now the city has 19 of the 20 buses needed for the fleet and is in the process of training drivers to use the new equipment. Authorities are asking motorists to stay out of the ART lane on Central Avenue. Police have reportedly issued about 200 warnings to drivers for stopping in, riding in or cutting across ART bus lanes in the past three weeks. About a week before the route officially opens, officers will begin issuing citations in earnest.