The Los Alamos Board of Education has decided overwhelmingly in favor of Highlands University for a program designed to increase the number of teachers in the district with a master’s degree.
In funding a master’s program for its teachers, the district is hoping to retain more teachers as well as beef up the “training and experience” factor for the district, which the NM Public Education Department rewards with more funding for the district.
Recently, the district suffered a setback in that funding when seven well-experienced teachers, most with master’s degrees, retired last year, an event that cost the district in not only training, education and experience, but in funding as well.
Instead of replacing the teachers, the board thought it would make greater economic sense to fund a program that would enhance the education and qualifications of teachers within the district and use the later gain in funding to in turn hire more teachers.
At Tuesday’s meeting, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Gene Schmidt and Assistant Superintendent of Schools Gerry Washburn presented their plan to the board.
Schmidt said their plan had three goals, increasing teacher effectiveness, retaining and attracting quality teachers and addressing the PED funding issue.