Vote 4 NM: Differing opinions could complicate education reform | KOB 4
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Vote 4 NM: Differing opinions could complicate education reform

Tessa Mentus, Colton Shone, Brittany Costello
November 04, 2018 10:13 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— No matter who is elected as New Mexico’s next governor, he or she will have a lot of work to do when they take office.

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Both candidates say they want to improve education, but how they go about doing it is where they differ.

Differing opinions were a common theme among students, teacher and other stakeholders when discussing education in KOB's Vote 4 NM series.

Funding

“I think that any way that we can look toward funding education in whatever ways and means that we can use money to positively impact New Mexico is really important,” said Becka Myers who takes part in student government at UNM.

“I think, definitely, if we could just put more money into the classrooms, a lot of the teachers have to take money out of their own pocket to make the classrooms work and have the supplies they want for different activities,” said Sara Gibbon, a student studying to become a teacher at UNM.

“The first thing our new governor needs to do is restore proper funding to education, not fund pet projects with the PED but actually flow the money to the school districts so they can buy supplies, so they can pay our teachers so they can give our teachers raises,” said Jason Krosinsky, who teaches middle school in Albuquerque.

Start Talking

Not everyone thinks more money for education should be the top priority.

Many educators want the governor to meet the children and teachers in the education system.

“The very first thing is visiting schools, talking with students, talking with teachers, talking with families. I think that you can't get more direct information than that.  You have to be on the ground getting to know what the issues are, “ said Ivonne Orozco, New Mexico teacher of the year.

‘The first priority is meeting with everyone and changing the focus from testing, high stakes testing, into consequences for students, communities, parents and educators. That's the first thing they need to do,” said Stephanie Ly, the president of New Mexico's American Federation of Teachers.

“I know there are different groups of them and a lot of the groups will have different opinions, there's different schools out there, there are traditional public schools, there are public charter schools, there are a lot of voices so maybe just making sure they get every voice included,” said Julia Burrola, who considered leaving teaching at one point.

More Options

Students in New Mexico were clear, they want more options.

“More activities, more things kids like, open up a little more,” said Andrew Licon, a high school student. “A little more funding for programs like this that need that little extra bit to get the students ahead

“I think there needs to be more of an emphasis on like extra curriculars, and alternate ways of learning and thinking because if we just continue to teach people one way then we're never going to have innovation because teaching people new ways of thinking and creativity is what creates like cures for cancer and new machinery and everything we need to advance in society,” said Chloe Brownell, a high school student.

Credits

Tessa Mentus, Colton Shone, Brittany Costello

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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