PRESS RELEASE - March 12, 2004
New Mexico Public Education Department
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786

Ruth Williams
Public Outreach Director
(505) 476-0393

Public Education Commission Honors 12 New National Board-Certified Teachers

(Santa Fe, NM)--The Public Education Commission today honored 12 New Mexico teachers who received certification from the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards® in November 2003. This brings the number of National Board-certified teachers in New Mexico to 120.

“By meeting the National Board’s rigorous standards, these 12 teachers have truly reached a high pinnacle. They are among 120 teachers in our state who represent excellence in teaching due to their knowledge, skills, disposition and professional judgment. I encourage their school communities and citizens throughout the state to join with the Public Education Commission and all of us at the Public Education Department in complimenting their outstanding achievement,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Veronica C. García.

The 12 newly named National Board-certified teachers are as follows:

Albuquerque Public Schools:
Joanne Bahrmann, 4th grade teacher, Corrales Elementary
Bianca Belmonte-Sapien, Juvenile Detention Center Educational Unit
Shauna Bolton, English teacher, La Cueva High
Maria Ladd, English teacher, La Cueva High
Denise Mullen, 6th and 7th grade teacher in Social Studies, James Monroe Middle
Jane Pierce, English teacher, La Cueva High
Erica Jill Vice, instructional coach, Tomisita Elementary

Deming Public Schools:
Janet Barney, 4th grade teacher, Memorial Elementary

Gallup-McKinley County Public Schools:
Verna Escudero, 7th grade teacher in Language Arts, Gallup Middle

Los Lunas Public Schools:
Elena Gardner, Kindergarten teacher, Tome Elementary

Moriarty Municipal Schools:
Peggy Jackson, Honor Civics teacher, Moriarty High

Rio Rancho Public Schools:
Lori Sturgess, 8th grade teacher in Humanities, Rio Rancho Mid-High

The National Board is dedicated to identifying and recognizing accomplished teaching in New Mexico and encourages and sustains continued professional growth among teachers, contributes to the support of a respected and responsible teaching profession and contributes to the successful education of all students.

In other business, the PEC set the following meeting dates for 2004: May 24-25, June 11, September 17, October 8 and December 9. The May 24-25 meeting will be a two-day retreat in Albuquerque focused on creating a plan to implement the PEC’s new duties as detailed in HB 96a “Public Education Department Act” of 2004.