LAPS: Recap Of April 18 Los Alamos Public Schools Board Meeting

LAPS Board President Antonio Jaurigue recognized LAMS Halktalkers and LAHS Hilltalkers at the April 18 board meeting. Photo Courtesy LAPS


The Los Alamos Public Schools Board met Tuesday (April 18) in the School Board Room.

School Board President Antonio Jaurigue started the meeting by recognizing members of the Los Alamos Middle School Hawktalkers, coached by Sherri Bublitz, and the Los Alamos High School Hilltalkers, coached by Margo Batha and Tacarra Lake.

“The Hilltalkers had an excellent showing at the State Speech and Debate Championship and the State Congressional Debate Championship, earning a New Mexico Speech and Debate Overall School of Excellence Award for earning the most team points throughout the state championship,” President Jaurigue said. “This is the eighth year in a row that the team received this award.”

He also acknowledged Luke Favorite on receiving the Lockhart-Henry Presiding Officer Award in Congressional Debate, and Alyssa Sun-Bennett on receiving the Top Speaker Award in Lincoln-Douglas Debate for the highest speaking points earned in preliminary rounds of Lincoln-Douglas Debate. “This is also the first time in their history that the Hilltalkers earned the highest points in Congressional Debate and won Sweepstakes in this event.”

Erik Harrigan of RBC Capital Markets reviewed the 2023 bond sale results with school board members. The School Board had approved Stifel as the underwriter for the 2023 General Obligation Bond sale in the amount of $10,000,000. Mr. Harrigan reported that the district maintained its strong AA2 bond rating. 

School Board Vice President Ellen Specter noted that the district has the highest bond rating in the state and gave kudos to Business Manager Teresa Gatewood and her team for their hard work. 

The Board next approved the Part-Time Employee Resolution which provides insurance to eligible part-time employees of Los Alamos Public Schools for the 2023/2024 school year,

School board members also approved the submission of the FY2024 IDEA-B application to the New Mexico Public Education Department. This provides funding for special education services and resources.

Following a budget presentation by Teresa Gatewood and Acting Superintendent Jennifer Guy, the School Board approved the proposed 2023/2024 budget in the amount of $40,050,430 which includes a 7% raise for all LAPS employees.

And finally, board members approved the selections of Cuddy McCarthy LLC and Walsh Gallegos Trevino Kyle & Robinson PC for district legal services for the next four years. 

The next School Board meeting will be on Tuesday, May 9 at 5:30 pm in the School Boardroom and via Zoom.