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October 16, 2002

Tribes, SDE, SBE and Legislators to Meet October 22-23 At Government-to-Government Meeting;
Comments Sought from Gubernatorial Candidates

(Santa Fe, NM)- Representatives of the New Mexico State Department of Education (SDE) and New Mexico State Board of Education (SBE) will meet with 22 Indian tribal leaders at the Biannual Government-to-Government Meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday, October 22-23, at the University of New Mexico-Gallup Branch, in the auditorium, located at 200 College Road in Gallup. The meeting will focus on improving the education of American Indian students attending public schools.

"The biannual meetings between tribal and state leaders provide an opportunity for partnerships and the direct involvement of tribes in meeting the educational needs of Indian students. Collectively, we are seeking the most effective strategies and use of resources to increase academic achievement," said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Michael J. Davis.

On Tuesday, October 22, beginning at 9:00 a.m., state Senator Leonard Tsosie, State Superintendent Davis, SDE Indian Education Director Roz Carroll and Toni Trujillo, the SDE's special master on corrective action, will discuss the state's view of Indian education, including accountability, student data and programs.

This will be followed by a discussion of Indian education from the viewpoint of New Mexico's public schools and the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Discussed will be Head Start and elementary, middle and high school programs. Participating will be Monica Carrasco, president of the New Mexico Indian Head Start Association, and Ed Parisian, deputy director of the Office of Indian Education Programs for the BIA.

Following the state, public school and BIA views of Indian education, the 2002 candidates for governor have been invited to provide comments. (All the gubernatorial candidates have been invited to attend. Confirmation of their attendance is pending).

On Wednesday, October 23, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, the Legislative Education Study Committee (LESC) will meet jointly with those attending the Government-to-Government Meeting.

"This is a unique opportunity to consider legislative updates, priorities for the 2003 legislative session and future legislative priorities," said State Superintendent Davis.