States

New Mexico Union Votes “No Confidence” in State’s Ed. Secretary

By Andrew Ujifusa — May 10, 2012 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A political organization must identify diverse ways to express its contempt or dislike for people and proposals it finds contemptible or not likable. The Albuquerque Teachers Federation has settled on one well-established way of expressing disapproval with a “no confidence” vote in New Mexico Secretary of Education Hanna Skandera, Hailey Heinz of the Albuquerque Journal first reported on May 9.

A “no confidence” vote by teachers unions is a trusty weapon in the arsenal of education politics, as recent and easily-located examples from California, Ohio, and Rhode Island demonstrate. But you’ll notice that those votes deal with district superintendents who have annoyed local collective bargaining units beyond their endurance. A “no confidence” vote directed at a state official moves the needle a little more.

As I touched on in a previous article, Skandera at a Council of Chief State School Officers meeting in Washington in March indicated her reluctance to lobby for more federal funding unless state education officials could provide sufficient data to support their programs. That sentiment may not sound particularly explosive, but such a stress on data can have bad associations for teachers unions.

Heinz reported that the resolution attached to the unanimous “no confidence” vote lists a dozen grievances with Skandera, including her planned teacher evaluation system that relies on what the union believes is an inaccurate model, and her decision to lay off state education department employees. It also serves as an attack on state leadership’s education proposals.

Skandera, who was appointed by Gov. Susana Martinez (R) in 2011, previously served as former Florida governor Jeb Bush’s deputy education secretary, and was an assistant to former U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings. Like the school assessment system Bush created in Florida, the school grading system Martinez introduced in January uses A-F grades to measure school performance. Skandera’s 3rd-grade retention plan that would end social promotion at that grade level, meanwhile, is also championed by Bush’s Florida-based Foundation for Excellence in Education.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
6 Key Trends in Teaching and Learning
As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and a return to the classroom for many—we come better prepared, but questions remain. How will the last year impact teaching and learning this school
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Attendance Awareness Month: The Research Behind Effective Interventions
More than a year has passed since American schools were abruptly closed to halt the spread of COVID-19. Many children have been out of regular school for most, or even all, of that time. Some
Content provided by AllHere
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Ensuring Continuity of Learning: How to Prepare for the Next Disruption
Across the country, K-12 schools and districts are, again, considering how to ensure effective continuity of learning in the face of emerging COVID variants, politicized debates, and more. Learn from Alexandria City Public Schools superintendent
Content provided by Class

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

States During Site Visit From Cardona, Illinois Governor Defends Vaccine, Testing Policies
“The testing regimen is there in order to make sure that they’re not entering the institution where they work and spreading COVID-19.”
Karen Ann Cullotta, Chicago Tribune
3 min read
The Student Council lead the creation of “sensory hallways” at Western Branch Middle School in Chesapeake, Va.
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona looks on as Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks with reporters after touring Access Hawthorne Family Health Center, which is offering COVID-19 vaccines at 3040 S. Cicero Ave. in Cicero, as part of the Department of Education's "Return to School Road Trip" events in the Chicago area, Tuesday afternoon, Sept. 21, 2021.
Ashlee Rezin/Chicago Sun-Times via AP
States Kentucky Ends All Statewide Mask Mandates After Governor's Vetoes Overridden
The Republican-led legislation strips the Democratic governor's ability to issue statewide mask mandates in schools or anywhere else.
Jack Brammer and Alex Acquisto, Lexington Herald-Leader
4 min read
In this Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, file photo, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear addresses the media in Frankfort, Ky. Kentucky's governor said Sunday, Oct. 11, that he will quarantine after a member of his security detail who drove with his family the day before later tested positive for COVID-19. Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear said he and his family feel fine, show no coronavirus symptoms and have tested negative for the virus.
In this Sept. 23, 2020, file photo, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear addresses the media in Frankfort, Ky.
Timothy D. Easley/AP
States Bill to Restrict How Race and Racism Is Taught in Schools Headed to Texas Governor
If the "critical race theory" bill sounds familiar, that's because lawmakers passed a similar one during the regular legislative session.
Eleanor Dearman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
4 min read
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott speaks at a news conference in Austin, Texas, on June 8, 2021.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott speaks at a news conference in Austin, Texas, on June 8, 2021.
Eric Gay/AP
States Infographic Which States Are Reporting COVID-19 Cases in Schools?
Some states are reporting the number of COVID-19 cases in their schools and districts. Use this table to find your state's data.
Image shows the coronavirus along with data charts and numbers.
iStock/Getty Images Plus