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PRESS RELEASE

February 22, 2002

SBE to Consider Regulations on Accountability, Local Curriculum at February/March Meeting

(Santa Fe, NM)-The New Mexico State Board of Education (SBE) will consider regulations on the public school accountability system and review of local curriculum at its regular meeting to be held on Friday, March 1, in Santa Fe at the New Mexico State Land Office, Morgan Hall, located at 310 Old Santa Fe Trail. The meeting will begin at 8:00 a.m.

The SBE will also conclude an appeal hearing by Academy Charter School in Las Vegas, beginning at 9:30 a.m. The school was denied a charter by the Las Vegas City Public Schools. The appeal hearing in January was extended to the SBE's February/March meeting.

"Through the proposed regulations on public school accountability, the rating system and school improvement requirements have been further refined to bring them in line with SBE actions," said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Michael J. Davis. "Through the appeal hearing, the State Board of Education is providing an impartial process to the denied charter school as afforded by state statute."

The SBE will revisit the weighting of the student achievement indicator in the Accountability Program. The SBE voted in June to give equal weight to yearly student growth and student status (annual performance). "We want to make sure that there is not an over-reliance on growth data," said Patricia Rael, the SDE's assistant superintendent of accountability and information services.

The SBE will also consider the status of Title I schools originally identified as needing improvement in 1997 and facing corrective action this fall. "The State Board will consider the alignment of federal and state requirements for Title I school improvement schools," Rael said.

Five of the SBE's six standing committees and the Rules of Procedure Ad Hoc Committee will hold meetings on Wednesday and Thursday, February 27-28, in Morgan Hall. Committees act in an advisory capacity to the SBE, referring items for action. Committee discussions will include:

  • Accountability Regulations. The SBE's Accountability Committee will meet on Wednesday from 1:00 to 6:00 p.m. to discuss proposed regulations on accountability, the weighting of growth scores in rating public schools, the status of Title I schools facing corrective action and whether regulatory language regarding test security and noncompliance with testing regulations is sufficient. Items will be referred to the SBE for consideration.
  • Local Curriculum. The SBE's Instructional Services Committee will meet on Thursday from 8:00 to 11:30 a.m. to consider a proposed regulation regarding the SBE's review of local school curriculum and proposed regulations by the New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA). The SBE is required by regulation to approve NMAA rule changes. Items will be referred to the SBE for consideration.
  • School District Issues. The SBE's Finance, Transportation and Administration Committee will meet on Thursday from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. to discuss financial, contractual and Open Meetings Act issues in the Albuquerque and Las Cruces Public Schools. The committee will also hear a report on school district financial issues in Cuba, Floyd, Mesa Vista and Vaughn and review, for SBE consideration, the law regarding creation of new school districts.

    "We are seeking to ensure that the Albuquerque and Las Cruces school districts are in compliance with statute and State Board of Education regulation. As with all school districts, they must comply with procedures governing public school budgeting and accounting," said State Superintendent Davis.

    The next meeting of the SBE will be held on April 24-26 at a location to be determined.

    For more information, contact Ruth Williams, the SDE's public relations director, at 505-476-0393.


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