PED: Legislative Session Ends With Significant Investments In Education


New Mexico public education got a historic $3.8 billion boost in the 2022 legislative session that ended today, with funding to cover record teacher pay raises and other initiatives to combat the educator workforce crisis. The session also concludes with investments to improve instruction in literacy and indigenous languages and to expand the community schools strategy and other evidence-based programs.

“New Mexico is remarkably lucky to have a Legislature that understands the incredible challenges our children face and steps up again and again to fund evidence-based programs to help them overcome those challenges and thrive,” Public Education Secretary Kurt Steinhaus said. “My PED colleagues and I are grateful for the leadership of this administration and honored by this deep trust placed in us, and we promise to continue building a world-class education system to serve every New Mexico child.”

These are some of the major pro-education achievements of the 2022 legislative session:

Educator Workforce Crisis

  • $180.3 million: Every New Mexico educator will receive at least a 7% pay raise in the fiscal year beginning July 1;
  • $76.7 million: Teacher minimum salaries will increase to $50,000, $60,000 and $70,000, depending on the state’s experience-based tiers (a $10,000 bump at each level);
  • $10 million: No school employee will earn less than $15 per hour;
  • $15.5 million: New Mexico teacher preparation programs will offer more teacher residencies to ensure educator diversity and fill high-need teaching positions in the state. (In addition, the Legislature added $50 million for endowed faculty positions in teacher preparation programs at New Mexico colleges and universities.)
  • $500,000: More educators will receive scholarships to apply for National Board Certification this year.

Extended Learning Time

  • $22 million: In order to give students more time to engage in quality time with teachers, the Legislature provided for K-12 Plus Pilot programs that allow districts flexibility in creating their own programs.
  • $21 million: This appropriation provides for planning grants that allow districts to work with communities to design K-12 Plus programs.

Indian Education

  • $15 million: The Legislature tripled last year’s appropriation to the Indian Education Fund, which supports tribal education departments, school districts and charter schools in providing indigenous language and cultural instruction and other programs.
  •  $1.25 million: Indigenous language and culture teachers certified by tribes, nations and pueblos will now be paid the same as Level 1 teachers.
  •  $2 million: This appropriation will pay for planning and designing new tribal libraries.
  • The Legislature also provided additional funding to tribal education departments to partner with school districts and charter schools to offer an extended learning time program called K-12 Plus for Native American students. 


  • $11.5 million: The Public Education Department will expand its LETRS training to teachers in grades three through five. Teachers in kindergarten through second grade have already received the training, which provides a deeper understanding of the science of reading and evidence-based strategies to support all students, particularly those who experience reading challenges.

Community Schools

  • $8 million: The Legislature increased last year’s $5 million appropriation to $8 million to continue expanding the proven community schools strategy across the state. Community schools are existing schools that receive grants to develop programs and services that fall within four broad evidence-based strategies: Integrated student supports, expanded and enriched learning time and opportunities, active family and community engagement, and collaborative leadership and practices.

Additional highlights:

  • $10 million to expand Career and Technical education and fund additional workplace learning;
  • $15 million to provide at-risk students with academic and behavioral interventions;
  • $10 million for technology and Informational Technology staffing to continue closing the digital divide.