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Board Meeting Dates

Board of Education District and Community Relations Committee Meeting

Wednesday, October 23, 2013, 5:00 PM

Meeting Documents

Meeting Location

DeLayo Martin Community Room Alice and Bruce King Educational Complex, 6400 Uptown NE

Additional Details

District and Community Relations Committee Meeting



Wednesday, October 23, 2013

5:00 PM

DeLayo-Martin Community Room, Alice and Bruce King Educational Complex, 6400 Uptown Blvd.NE

Albuquerque, New Mexico



Call to Order



Roll Call



Adoption of the October 23, 2013, District and Community Relations Agenda and the Approval of the August 27, 2013, and September 25, 2013, District and Community Relations Minutes (Discussion/Action)



Public Forum



Superintendent's Student Advisory Council (SuperSAC) Report (Discussion)
Presenter: Joseph Escobedo, Chief of Staff



Grant Update (Discussion)
Presenter: Joseph Escobedo, chief of staff and Michele Tigelaar, grant manager/writer



Update on Legislative Issues and Discuss Potential Items for the 2014 Legislative Agenda (Discussion)
Presenter: Carrie Robin Menapace, legislative liaison and policy analyst



Next District and Community Relations Committee Meeting



Thursday, November 7, 2013, at 5:00 p.m., at the Alice and Bruce King Educational Complex in the DeLayo-Martin Community Room.





Minutes of the District and Community Relations Committee Meeting

Board of Education

Albuquerque Public Schools


A District and Community Relations Committee meeting of the Board of Education (BOE) of Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) was held Wednesday, October 23, 2013, beginning at 5:00 p.m., in the DeLayo Martin Community Room, Alice and Bruce King Educational Complex, 6400 Uptown Blvd. NE.


I.          Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 5:00 p.m.

  1. A. Roll Call

Present:  Martin Esquivel, Dr. Analee Maestas, Lorenzo Garcia, and Dr. Don Duran; Kathy Korte participated by phone

Absent:  Steven Michael Quezada and Dr. David Peercy

  1. B. Adoption of the October 23, 2013, District and Community Relations Agenda and the Approval of the August 27, 2013, and September 25, 2013, District and Community Relations Minutes (Discussion/Action)

Chairperson Analee Maestas asked for a motion to adopt the agenda and minutes.  Dr. Don Duran moved for approval; Kathy Korte seconded the motion; motion carried.


II.         Public Forum

The public forum participant shared concern over how APS administration had handled a recent event at one of the high schools.


III.        Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council (SuperSAC) Report (Discussion)

Chief of Staff Joseph Escobedo introduced SuperSAC students:  Sahlea Tubbeh, a senior at Highland High School and Celestina (Tina) Saiz, a junior at Early College Academy (ECA).

The SuperSAC reported that topics discussed at the latest SuperSAC meeting with the Superintendent included the proposed calendar for 2014-15, student testing, new requirements for Bridge scholarships, and teacher evaluation.  They shared feedback from the APS student population on these topics:

  • Students prefer to take finals before season breaks as they might perform better;
  • Having textbooks and graphic calculators available for home study would help them to better prepare for tests;
  • Students feel overwhelmed with the numerous tests; instructional time is lost and classes are set back a little bit;
  • Could a high ACT score substitute for an end of course exam?
  • Students feel that teacher evaluation using student testing results is unfair to teachers, especially if a student is ill or lacks the drive to perform.

Discussion by the District and Community Relations Committee clarified that the issue of adequate funding for textbooks and instructional materials is being addressed.  Board members would like to know the cycle of adoption for topics before the legislature, especially concerning funding for instructional materials.  Board members also suggested that the district look at the funding mechanisms of other organizations, such as the National Association of Charter School Authorizers.


IV.       Grant Update (Discussion)

Mr. Escobedo, chief of staff, and Michele Tigelaar, grant manager/writer, discussed grant acquisitions since the creation of the grant manager/writer position in 2012.  To date, the district has received more than $764,000 in grants, resulting from 18 different grant requests over a period of 14 months, and worth $51 million; five were successful.  Highlights of recent grant requests are as follows:

  • Early College High School Grant from the New Mexico Public Education Department ($100,000);
  • Race to the Top from the U.S. Department of Education ($25 million);
  • School Leadership Program for Turnaround Principals from the U.S. Department of Education ($4 million) – the grant was denied;
  • Atlantic Philanthropies Grant to increase students and families enrolled in public health insurance and for school based health centers ($600,000) – the grant was approved;
  • Increasing the number of National Board Certified Teachers – the grant was approved.

The Race to the Top grant will be decided in December and funded in January.  Ms. Tigelaar anticipates that the district will score well, but that we may be asked to provide a little more evidence.  It is not uncommon to apply multiple times before a federal grant comes through.

The main focus has been on quantity, quality, and strategy.  The district averages approximately 1.25 grant applications per month; the return on investment has been very good.

Grant applications currently in the works are:

  • The Southern New Mexico Bridge, which has ties to the Daniels Fund;
  • Modification and re-submission for the U.S. Department of Education School Leadership Program—a multi-million dollar program;
  • The Gates Foundation for collaborative work with district- and state-authorized charter schools.

Significant improvements have been made in the development of vision, school climate, parent-engagement, and good relationships with the teacher’s union and key APS departments, and in putting together an informal, internal advisory group to help read and evaluate grants.

Ms. Tigelaar provides input for a “Grant Watch” in the “APS Perspective,” a weekly employee newsletter, and works with schools, getting information for them, and helping them determine whether they should go through the APS Education Foundation or the district for grant funding.

Board members commended them for the work accomplished.



V.        Update on Legislative Issues and Discuss Potential Items for the 2014 Legislative Agenda (Discussion)

Carrie Robin Menapace, legislative liaison and policy analyst, reviewed recent and upcoming legislative meetings and activity, and discussed potential items for the 2014 legislative agenda.

A handout of proposed discussion topics for the 2014 legislative agenda was provided.  Ms. Menapace clarified that the next session will take place in November or December and that it will be a budget session.  Proposed topics include:

  • Resolutions approved by the APS Board of Education:
    • No unfunded mandates
    • Adequate time to analyze impact of amendments, appropriate funding to avoid dilution of units and hold harmless provisions required for changes in the funding formula
    • Delay teacher evaluation implementation;
    • Budget discussion-$296 million in state “new revenue” in Fiscal Year (FY) 15:
      • Above the line versus below the line (above the line funding is appropriated by the APS Board of Education)
      • Above the line:
        • Class size waivers ($8-$10 million increase in cost to the district when waivers are no longer approved in 2014)
        • Insurance costs (APS requested about $12 million in order to hold employees harmless)
        • Fixed costs (about $3 million)
          • Employer increase in New Mexico Educational Retirement Board (NMERB) contribution for FY 15;
  • Categorical funding:
    • Transportation (funding has been low and is a loss to the district; task forces are working on fixes and solutions)
    • Instructional materials (the district may want to place priority on this item, as there may be a significant shortfall);
  • Additional appropriation considerations (don’t know whether these will be above or below the line):
    • Principal leadership program (The district is working with UNM on this.)
    • Career and technical education (The district may ask the City to have more money made available for this; Mayor Berry is a proponent.)
    • End of course exam printing, scoring, and reporting (cost is about $15.65 per test—a million dollar impact)
    • Social workers (costly)
    • Substance abuse counselors (cost is about $3 million to have one in each high school; the district only has about six)
    • School-based health clinics (many are closing due to lack of funding; funding would have to be carefully tracked in order for LESC to make sure it stays there);
    • Other topics:
      • Alternative demonstration of competency definition


  • Vetoed legislation from the 2013 session:
    • Education technology purchases from local Mill Levy
    • Investments.

The handout included “FY 14 Public School Support and Related Appropriations” for the New Mexico Legislative Education Study Committee (LESC) as well as a breakdown of the changes in retirement benefits through the NMERB.

Ms. Menapace closed in saying there are two items not yet listed:

  • An additional employee raise
  • Special education maintenance of effort (MOE).

Board members stressed the importance of implementing a mentorship program for principals that encourages leadership and innovation.  Many do not understand special education.  Consideration should be given to crafting a bill for an alternative graduation plan for students, to see what is possible.

They strongly support ensuring that the following is funded through above the line funding, specifically tagged for these purposes:

  • A raise for employees
  • Funding for educational assistants (EAs) to raise them above the poverty rate
  • Student mental health issues
  • Educational materials (online textbooks suggested as a possible solution)
  • Technology (Lennox offers a platform for technology with free software and infrastructure for old computers).

Ms. Menapace added that the district should also look at supporting the ability to utilize excess capital funding for school awards.


VI.       Next District and Community Relations Committee Meeting

Chairperson Maestas announced that the next District and Community Relations Committee meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 7, 2013, at 5:00 p.m., at the Alice and Bruce King Educational Complex in the DeLayo Martin Community Room.


VII.      Adjournment

Dr. Duran moved to adjourn the meeting; Lorenzo Garcia seconded the motion; motion carried.  The meeting was adjourned at 6:00 p.m.

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