Education and Early Learning/Care

Children are our most valuable natural resource, and the investments we make in them, particularly in their earliest years, will benefit us all in the long term. Every family and individual should have access to an affordable, evidence-based, and high-quality prenatal and cradle-to-career system of care and education. Investing in a life-long educational continuum is the most effective way to ensure that New Mexicans have the best opportunities to succeed in school and throughout life.

Featured Reports

New Mexico Kids at the Crossroads
With the highest rate of child poverty in the nation, New Mexico is not providing the opportunities our children need to succeed. But the good news is that we can improve opportunities for New Mexico’s kids through public policy. This children's agenda for candidates in the 2018 election provides 30 policy recommendations that will help improve child well-being in New Mexico. Read more
Sustaining Career Pathways Frameworks
Career pathways, programs that move non-traditional adult students along a continuum into post-secondary education, have shown real promise in other states. However, they require a systemic framework that aligns policies and funding for a comprehensive approach. This PowerPoint, presented to the SUN PATH Advisory Council, looks at funding sources, possible frameworks, and examples of effective career pathway programs in other states. (Sept. 2017) Read more
New Mexico Public School Funding through the Great Recession and Beyond
A lawsuit currently working its way thought the New Mexico court system asserts that the state has failed to provide school funding sufficient for the education of all school-age children in the state, as required by the New Mexico constitution. This report supports those arguments. (A Fiscal Policy Project report; Aug. 2016) Read more

Recent Publications

The Lottery Scholarship—the state’s largest financial aid program—is not need-based even though New Mexico has one of the highest poverty rates in the nation. What's more, it's not distributed in a way that helps many low-income students. Learn more with this Working Poor Families Project fact sheet. (Feb. 2018) Read more

The College Affordability Fund comprises some of the only need-based financial aid that the state makes available to low-income students. But the fund was raided in 2017 to fill budget holes in other areas. This fact sheet shows why the fund needs to be replenished. A Working Poor Families Project fact sheet. (Jan. 2018) Read more

Career pathways, programs that move non-traditional adult students along a continuum into post-secondary education, have shown real promise in other states. However, they require a systemic framework that aligns policies and funding for a comprehensive approach. This PowerPoint, presented to the SUN PATH Advisory Council, looks at funding sources, possible frameworks, and examples of effective career pathway programs in other states. (Sept. 2017) Read more

View all Education and Early Learning/Care publications

Recent Blog Posts

June 5, 2017
Economists say it again and again: investments in higher education pay off. Unfortunately, Governor Susana Martinez’s decision to veto all funding for higher education—every penny—sent the wrong message to current and future college students worried about college costs as well as to businesses reticent of investing in a state that does not value education.
February 10, 2017
The last time voters decided to increase the distribution from the permanent fund was back in 2003. Even then, prognosticators warned that the move would “deplete” the fund. Back in 2003 the fund was worth about $7 billion. Over the next dozen years, the fund still managed to more than double. Here's why.
May 16, 2016
Because poverty has multiple causes and tends to be generational, we must address it by meeting the needs of the family as a whole. This is called a two-generation approach, and it does more than ensure that children are fed and safe. It also gives parents the tools they need to better their own situations—whether that means access to job training and further education or health care to deal with substance abuse problems or chronic illness.
April 6, 2016
Students at UNM will see another increase of about $280 in their tuition and fees next year. That may not seem like a huge amount to some, but it’s enormous when you look at it this way.

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Current Initiatives

Invest in Kids NOW! is an alliance of organizations dedicated to making early childhood education, health and development for children ages zero to five years a priority in New Mexico. Read more.

Birth to Five New Mexico is an alliance of organizations and individuals dedicated to improving access to and the quality of early childhood care and education (ECE) in New Mexico.

Resources

The Early Childhood Map Gallery is a collection of interactive maps and applications describing early childhood risks, services, and resources in New Mexico neighborhoods by the NM Community Data Collaborative.

Change the First Five Years and You Change Everything is a short video by the Ounce of Prevention Fund that puts a human face on the need for higher quality ECE programs, particularly for children from low-income homes.

The Heckman Equation is an online resource for policymakers, advocates and organizations who promote investment in early childhood education and development. The site, based on the work of Nobel laureate in economics, James Heckman, includes short videos and other advocacy tools.

Zero to Three is a national, nonprofit organization that informs, trains, and supports professionals, policy-makers, and parents in their efforts to improve the lives of infants and toddlers.

Fight Crime: Invest in Kids is a national, bipartisan, nonprofit anti-crime organization of more than 5,000 police chiefs, sheriffs, prosecutors, attorneys general, and other law enforcement leaders, who advocate for high-quality early care and education programs as one way to reduce crime.

Mission: Readiness is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization led by senior retired military leaders ensuring continued national security and prosperity by calling for smart investments, including high-quality early care and education programs, in the upcoming generation of American children.