June 27, 2005
New Mexico Public Education Department
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501-2786

Jennifer Chavez
Public Information Officer
(505) 476-0393
jchavez@ped.state.nm.us

Secretary García Hosts Community Conversation
in Santa Fe with Teachers from Across the State

( Santa Fe, NM)— Today, Secretary of Education, Dr. Veronica C. García will host a community conversation from 11:30 am – 2:00 pm with approximately 30 teachers from across New Mexico at the Inn of the Governor’s in Santa Fe. All of the teachers attending this community conversation were invited because they had received either a regional or national award for their teaching this year.

During the conversation, Secretary García will show data about the achievement gap in New Mexico to the teachers and then ask teachers to brainstorm with other teachers about the root causes of the achievement gap. The purpose of the luncheon is to try to find lasting solutions as well as tactical strategies that teachers can employ in the classroom to help close the achievement gap.

Secretary García said, “I am looking forward to working with these outstanding teachers today. Closing the achievement gap is my top educational reform priority, and while I believe it is up to all of us, parents, teachers, business leaders and policy makers working together to solve the problem, I am particularly interested in what these teachers have to say, as they are ‘on the front lines, in the classroom’ daily.”

Secretary García’s conversation today with teachers is part of a statewide community conversation tour that she is implementing. She hosted a community conversation in April in the town of Bernalillo, and in May she met in Albuquerque with business leaders from around the state for a community conversation. In July she has three more community conversations planned. On the 18 th of July; she will meet with Principals from across the State. On the 22 of July she will meet in Cloudcroft with New Mexico School Board Association members, and on the 29 th of July she will meet with members of the PTA, the League of Women Voters and the Municipal League for additional community conversations.

For additional information, or if you are interested in having a community conversation on closing the achievement gap with Secretary García in your area, please contact Jennifer Chavez, Public Information Officer, at (505)476-0393.