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New Mexico Ranks Last in Nation on Quality Counts Annual Report Card

By Evie Blad — September 03, 2019 1 min read
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Enrollment: 336,000

K-12 Budget: $2.8 billion

New Mexico ranked lower than all other states on the Chance for Success Index, with a grade of D-plus and a score of 68. That’s due in part to being at the bottom of the rankings on family income and near the bottom on other indicators, like for the 2015-16 school year high school graduation rates, where it ranked 50th.

But New Mexico’s scores on some financial indicators outperformed other states with overall low Quality Counts ratings.

The state got a B-plus in funding equity, ranking 23rd, and it ranked 19th in the percent of total taxable resources spent on education, about 3.5 percent.

In 2018, a state court ruled New Mexico had violated students’ constitutional rights to an adequate education and ordered it to provide more funding, particularly for “at-risk” children—students from poorer households, students with disabilities, Native American students, and English-language learners.

In April, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Democrat, signed a state budget that includes a $446 million raise in education spending, about a 16 percent increase over the previous budget.

She also signed bills to create frameworks for community schools and wraparound services designed to address nonacademic issues related to poverty that can stifle student achievement.

For more about New Mexico’s Quality Counts score, click here.

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Note: Enrollment is for the 2018-19 school year, and budget figure is for the 2019 fiscal year.

Research assistance from intern Héctor Alejandro Arzate.

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