September 24, 2004
New Mexico Public Education Department
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786

Ruth Williams
Legislative Liaison
(505) 827-7803 or
Pager: 988-0582

99 Percent of Full-Day Kindergarten Programs in 2002-2003
Show Student Gains Needed for First Grade

(Santa Fe, NM)—Ninety-nine percent of full-day kindergarten programs from 2002-2003 show student gains in acquiring the language and early literacy skills needed to enter first grade and become proficient readers. In 2001-2002 the figure was 95 percent and in 2000-2001 it was 94 percent.

“Full-day kindergarten in New Mexico is a winner. It is preparing our youngest students with the reading skills needed for first grade. We truly have much to celebrate. This investment by our Governor and Legislature is clearly making a difference,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Veronica C. García.

The announcement is based on the results of pre-tests and post-tests of full-day kindergarten students administered in 2002 and 2003, as required by the Optional Full-Day Kindergarten Literacy Readiness Program regulation.

Under the regulation, all full-day kindergarten programs must provide verification that their programs include a comprehensive research-based early literacy program, literacy-specific screening and assessment measures for participating students and comprehensive professional development for staff.