“The passage of the appropriations bill by the United States Congress has had major implications for future generations of New Mexicans by providing funding for the state’s early childhood education constitutional amendment, which was adopted by the state legislature in 2021 and supported overwhelmingly by voters in 2022.  The last step to finalizing the state’s constitutional amendment is for the United States Congress to approve it.

The amendment to the state’s constitution will only increase annual withdrawals from the state’s permanent school fund by a modest 1.25%. However, due to the size of the fund, this increase is projected to generate a boost of $236 million for early childhood education and the state’s public schools more broadly. From this amendment, funding is able to expand access to pre-K in New Mexico by 40%, with the inclusion of an increase in instructional hours for select programs, an expansion in the number of seats in classrooms, and a pay raise for early childhood workers. This infusion of resources is in addition to the investments the state has made during Governor Lujan Grisham’s first term in office, specifically regarding early childhood education.

This is a major victory for Gov. Grisham who prioritized universal access to early childhood health and educational development programming during her first term in office. Given thestrong relationship between early childhood services and economic well-being over the course of an individual’s life, this investment could be a game changer for the state of New Mexico.”


To read the entire article click here. |   and The Brookings Institution