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News from 2022-2023

Posted: June 13, 2022

Generous Grant Allows for Expansion of Newcomer Services

The $425,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation will help students arriving from other countries and seeking asylum in Albuquerque.

The APS Education Foundation received the grant, which will go to support the Albuquerque Public Schools Refugee & Newcomer Supports Program

"Every year, tens of thousands of forced migrants arrive in the U.S. with hopes to build a new future for themselves and their families," said Antonio Baca, program manager. "These kids have witnessed some of the worst atrocities in modern times, yet they arrive at school filled with hope and eager to learn."

Funding from W.K. Kellogg Foundation will create more learning opportunities and support for these students to help them reach their full potential. And the potential is great. Many speak several languages and quickly become interpreters for their families and friends.

The grant will help pay for: 

  • A four-week-long newcomer summer program for middle and high school students
  • In-depth professional development for teachers and staff
  • High-quality instruction for newcomer first-year students at Del Norte High School
  • Opportunities for various APS departments to collaborate and develop messaging in different home languages
  • After-school programs

The number of students and families that need guidance and resources continues to grow. Students in the newcomer program are immigrants who may be unaccompanied minors, refugees, or asylum seekers. Some have had formal education and now face language barriers; others have had no formal education. 

"We have funded several grants in schools to equip teachers with the tools they need to help newcomer students learn English and navigate their classes, but we always hoped we could do more on a larger scale for these amazing students and their families. The generous grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation will allow us to do just that," said Shannon Barnhill, executive director of the APS Education Foundation.  

Added APS Superintendent Scott Elder, "World events, including the war in Ukraine and the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, have resulted in more Recently Arrived English Learners in Albuquerque Public Schools. This grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation is timely, needed, and much appreciated. It will allow us to provide more programs for newcomer students, more training for teachers working with these students, and more support for their families."