La educación es la clave, los nuevomexicanos merecen lo mejor

Escrito por Neomi Martínez-Parra

Lo he visto todo. Como maestra de Educación Especial de Preparatoria he tenido estudiantes que han superado sus circunstancias para lograr ser exitosos integrantes de nuestra sociedad; pero también he visto a los que han fracasado. Como maestra, sé que uno de los problemas recurrentes en nuestro Estado es la fracasada indecisión de nuestros líderes para actuar con determinación y diseñar medios para detectar con anticipación las formas de apoyo a nuestros estudiantes que enfrentan retos académicos. Esto incluye a niños y niñas en edad temprana del desarrollo escolar.

El estado de Nuevo México es actualmente el peor de todos los 50 estados de la nación en la educación del kínder a la preparatoria. Esta realidad es como una sombra que tenemos en nuestro sistema y en nuestro Estado. Desafortunadamente, nuestros estudiantes son los que terminan sufriendo más por la forma en la que los educamos.

Soy de Lordsburg, una comunidad rural en el condado de Hidalgo; esta es una de las regiones más pobres del estado. Aquí nací y es donde he vivido, aquí es donde decidí criar a mi familia y aquí es donde decidí ser maestra. El rendimiento académico de baja calidad no siempre surge directamente de las escuelas. La pobreza y la baja participación de los padres de familia son factores que debemos enfrentar, pero a nuestros estudiantes y maestros se les tienen que dar las herramientas para que tengan éxito.

Independientemente si nos consideramos privilegiados o pobres, lo importante es que estemos de acuerdo en que nuestro Estado tendría un futuro mejor si las escuelas tuvieran más apoyo para que nuestros alumnos tengan un futuro mejor.

Por fortuna la Gobernadora Michelle Lujan Grisham anunció recientemente que Nuevo México ofrecería colegiatura gratuita a los estudiantes universitarios de Nuevo México. Este es un paso en la dirección correcta. Sin embargo, aun a pesar de esto hay mucho por hacer. He visto a muchos estudiantes que ingresan a la universidad sin la preparación adecuada y por consiguiente tienen problemas por su deficiencia en la lectura, la escritura y las matemáticas. Si el alumno no sabe escribir un análisis porque él o ella no obtuvo la educación fundamental a temprana edad entonces nuestra situación debe de cambiar.

Para que nuestros estudiantes puedan alcanzar el éxito escolar se les tiene que proporcionar educación temprana, ofrecer clases con menos estudiantes, brindar más programas escolares y tener personal (tales como los trabajadores sociales, consejeros, terapeutas, etc.) con experiencia escolar. Estas medidas servirían a todos los nuevomexicanos sin importar de que parte del estado somos o en qué nivel económico nos encontramos.

Cuando nuestros representantes en la Legislatura votan a favor del éxito educativo, están votando para invertir en el futuro de Nuevo México. Soy una de las nuevomexicanas que está cansada de que nuestro estado siempre aparezca en lo más bajo de las listas. Necesitamos que nuestra legislatura apoye medidas que ayuden a nuestras niñas y niños a prepararse para el futuro que les espera.

Nuestro enfoque debe ser en los programas educativos y no podemos negarles a nuestros educadores profesionales lo que necesitan. Esta es una de las razones por las cuales me estoy postulando para Senadora Estatal.

Mi comunidad merece tener una representación capaz, que lleve nuestras voces a Santa Fe. Debemos trabajar unidos para cambiar y asegurar que nuestros estudiantes estén preparados para el futuro, ya sea obteniendo una educación superior, en la universidad o en una carrera técnica, o para cuando ingresen directamente al mundo laboral ¡Estoy segura que podemos lograrlo!

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Contact Info: Luis Guerrero, Campaign Manager
Organization: Guerrero Political Solutions
Contact phone: (575)635-3354
Contact e-mail: lguerrerops@gmail.com


Education is the Key, New Mexicans Deserve Better

As a High School Special Education teacher, I have seen it all. I have seen students rise above their circumstances to become successful members of society, and I have seen too many students fail to do so. This I know: the most consistent problem with education in our State, is our failure to take enough action and early-interventions to support struggling students, including during the earliest years.   

New Mexico currently sits at number fifty nationwide when it comes to K-12 education. The low ranking of our education system is a suppressive dark cloud hanging over all of us.  Unfortunately, it is our children who always suffer the most from the way our State delivers education to our students. 

I am from the small and rural community of Lordsburg, which sits in Hidalgo county, one of the poorest regions in our State. This is where I have chosen to live, raise my family and became a teacher as my profession.  Our state’s low education rankings stem primarily from out-of-school factors like poverty and low parent involvement. These are not the fault of our teachers, but they do need more tools to help students successfully overcome those factors.

Whether we ourselves are struggling or privileged, we all agree the state will be better off if all our students were to succeed in school and become successful members of society.

Thankfully, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced New Mexico would offer free college tuition to state residents. This a great move. Still, I see many students unprepared for college as they struggle with the basics: reading, writing and math. If a student can’t write an essay because he or she did not have the appropriate foundation early in their educational path, then we need to change the situation.

Preparing all New Mexico students to succeed in school means we must provide early childhood education for all, as well as providing smaller class-sizes and in-school programs and staff (social workers, counselors, therapists and so on) throughout the K-12 experience. This is  in the best interest of all New Mexicans, regardless of what part of the State we are from, or our economic level. 

When lawmakers vote “yes” for educational progress, they invest in New Mexico’s future. I am one of the many New Mexicans that are tired of constantly being at the rankings. We need a legislature that supports programs to help all our children and prepare them for the future that awaits them.  

 Our focus should be on educational programs, and not denying educators the tools and resources to help move us up the rankings. This is only one of the reasons I am running for State Senator.  

My community deserves having the right representation and for our voices heard in Santa Fe.   We must change this together to ensure that our students are prepared for the future that lies ahead of them, whether they enter higher education, a career or technical program, or they go directly into the workforce. We can do this! 

Neomi Martinez-Parra is a Lordsburg, NM resident, teacher and Candidate for New Mexico Senate District 35.

 

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Contact Info: Luis Guerrero, Campaign Manager

Organization: Guerrero Political Solutions

Contact phone: (575)635-3354

Contact e-mail: lguerrerops@gmail.com


Lordsburg Educator to Primary Longtime New Mexico Senator

Lordsburg, July 2019
For immediate release:

Lordsburg educator and former Vice Chair of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, Neomi Martinez-Parra, is considering a run for the New Mexico Senate which will primary the current Democratic incumbent, John Arthur Smith. Senator Smith has held the District 35 seat for a total of 30 years and resides in Deming, NM.

“I have been to the homes of my students and have seen the struggles,” said Martinez-Parra, who began her teaching career in 1993 as a classroom assistant. She later transitioned to an assistant director with early childhood education that funded Montessori schools, group homes, and migrant programs for Pre-K support, while she attended college. She now holds a Master’s degree in Special Education, and has been a teacher for the Lordsburg Public Schools. “I have worked with students who have a hard time transitioning and are in need of post-secondary resources. Our students have been affected by the many issues this area faces.”

Lack of healthcare resources are also important issues affecting the area and are a major concern for Martinez Parra as a candidate. She and her siblings are caretakers for their elderly mother and have had to navigate the complicated system that makes it difficult for rural New Mexicans to have equal access to healthcare. “There have been times that I’ve had to drive all the way to Deming or Las Cruces for adequate medical attention. Hidalgo County does not have a hospital. We have a clinic that closes at 5pm and is closed on weekends.

“Our clinic, EMS, and Nursing home is understaffed and often times cannot provide the level of care that families like mine need”, Martinez-Parra said as she has experienced firsthand the difficulty of caring for an elderly parent with medical needs. She believes that the medical professionals in the area have gone above and beyond to do what they can, but while they are not at fault, the quality of care has been difficult for her and for her family.

Martinez-Parra will stand for the values that benefit the people in her District. This District encompasses Doña Ana, Hidalgo, Sierra, and Luna County. It also represents a large part of the border with Mexico, which has been at the front and center of the national debate on border security. Martinez-Parra said she looks forward to listening to the people of the District during the campaign, and to always be a voice for her District. She says that Housing is an issue in Lordsburg, where there is a Border Patrol Station. Unfortunately, due to its proximity with Arizona, many federal agents choose not to raise their families in the area, which she believes hurts local businesses and could be a driver of the local economy to the District. The agents that choose to live in the area often have to share housing with other agents and are only here temporarily.

The New Mexico Primary will take place in June 2020, and while Senator Smith has not announced if he will run for re-election, Martinez-Parra vows to work hard to win the nomination for this seat. “I want to work hard to represent the people of my District, and those who may not always have a say in the matter. It is time for our Senate to work for the people of New Mexico, so everyone has a better future and can thrive, especially in rural communities like my own.”

For more information, visit her website: http://www.neomi4nmsenate.com

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Contact info: Luis Guerrero, Campaign Manager
Organization: Guerrero Political Solutions
Contact phone: (575)635-3354
Contact email: lguerrerops@gmail.com