NMPED explains why APS can now participate in sports

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- What changed? That’s what many people wanted to know after APS announced sports will be allowed to return.

APS is not fully offering the hybrid learning options, which was required by the state to resume sports.

Instead, APS officials are moving forward with in-person, small group learning, for a limited number of students.

Wednesday night, New Mexico Public Education Secretary Dr. Ryan Stewart said they’ve been open to innovative ideas to get students back learning in the classroom:

"Throughout the pandemic, the New Mexico Public Education Department has been open to innovative options presented by school districts that adhere to our guidance and meet our goals to assure student, staff and community safety, optimize opportunities for in-person learning, and base decisions on available data and evidence. Albuquerque Public Schools was able to work with its high schools to offer in-person learning in the hybrid mode for families who choose to opt in. We are happy the district was able to expand in-person learning — a critical step in resuming athletic and other activities. This is a strong first step in the process of getting all students back for in-person learning."

The APS board voted to move to hybrid when the county reaches the Green level of restrictions.

APS will be offering both small groups and open hours for students who choose to come in for additional support. A spokesperson said those hours meet the PED’s requirements to allow athletics.

A PED spokesperson said hybrid learning means in-person learning at least 5.5 hours per day for at least 2 days per week (totaling 11 hours per week) for all who want it.

A spokesperson said PAS has assured the state that it will meet that criteria beginning March 8.