54th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2019


Elizabeth "Liz" Thomson and Christine Trujillo and Joy Garratt and Debra M. Sariñana and Patricia Roybal Caballero









     SECTION 1. Section 22-32-2 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2013, Chapter 16, Section 2) is amended to read:

     "22-32-2. PURPOSE.--The Community Schools Act is enacted to provide a strategy to organize the resources of a community to ensure student success while addressing the needs, including cultural and linguistic needs, of the whole student from early childhood programs and voluntary public pre-kindergarten through high school graduation; to partner federal, state and local [entities] and tribal governments with [private] community-based organizations to improve the coordination, delivery, effectiveness and efficiency of services provided to [children] students and families; and to coordinate resources, in order to align and leverage community resources and integrate funding streams."

     SECTION 2. A new section of the Community Schools Act is enacted to read:

     "[NEW MATERIAL] DEFINITIONS.--As used in the Community Schools Act:

          A. "community school" means a public school that partners with families and the community, including tribal partners, nonprofit community-based organizations and local businesses, to provide well-rounded educational opportunities and supports for student success through the implementation of a community school framework;

          B. "community school coordinator" means a full-time person employed by the lead partner agency who works within a community school as part of the site-based leadership team;

          C. "community school framework" means a set of strategies implemented in a community school that include culturally and linguistically responsive instruction, programs and services and restorative practices that focus on building and maintaining relationships;

          D. "community schools initiative" means the implementation of the community school framework to provide comprehensive or targeted support and improvement activities pursuant to the federal Every Student Succeeds Act;

          E. "elementary school" may include early childhood services and pre-kindergarten;

          F. "lead partner agency" means the agency that employs the community school coordinator and works collaboratively with the community school coordinator, the school principal and the site-based leadership team to assess, plan and carry out the community school framework;

          G. "site-based leadership team" means an interdisciplinary, school-based leadership team that includes the school principal, the community school coordinator, teachers, other school employees, families, community partners, tribal partners, nonprofit organizations, unions and neighboring community residents that guides collaborative planning, implementation and oversight; and

          H. "statewide coalition" means a group of community schools, members of their site-based leadership teams, foundations, businesses and other organizations, including unions, cultural and linguistic experts and tribal leaders, who have joined together to advocate for and support the development of community schools across New Mexico in alignment with an evidence-based community school framework."

     SECTION 3. A new section of the Community Schools Act is enacted to read:


          A. The community school framework shall ensure the use of research- and evidence-based strategies and best practices that support students, families and communities in ensuring student success, including:

                (1) integrated student supports that address non-academic and out-of-school barriers to learning through partnerships with social and health service agencies and providers that may include school-based or school-linked health care, case management services and family stability supports coordinated by a community school coordinator and that are culturally and linguistically responsive to the needs of students and their families;

                (2) expanded and enriched learning time and opportunities, including before-school, after-school, weekend, summer and year-round programs, that provide additional academic support, enrichment activities and other programs that enhance academic learning, social skills, emotional skills and life skills and are aligned with the school's curriculum;

                (3) active family and community engagement that:

                     (a) values the experiences of people from diverse backgrounds as empowered partners in decision making and encourages partnerships with parents or caregivers to develop and promote a vision for student success;

                     (b) offers courses, activities and services for parents or caregivers and community members; and

                     (c) creates structures and opportunities for shared leadership;

                (4) collaborative leadership and practices that build a culture of professional learning, collective trust and shared responsibility using strategies that at a minimum include a site-based leadership team and a community school coordinator;

                (5) broader use of public school facilities in which school buildings become hubs for neighborhood events, activities, advocacy and civic life;

                (6) community-based curriculum in which the content of instruction is centered on local knowledge, service learning and problem-solving around community issues; and

                (7) public pre-kindergarten and other state and federally funded early childhood services that:

                     (a) support working families and help ensure that children come to kindergarten ready to learn;

                     (b) provide students and working parents or caregivers with full-day and after-school child care;

                     (c) provide high-quality pre-kindergarten programs that are aligned to early childhood professional and curricular early learning standards;

                     (d) provide health, vision, dental and other supports and services to children before school age; and

                     (e) include strong partnerships and alignment with early learning centers and child care providers that may include transportation or coordination to meet the broader early childhood community needs.

          B. The lead partner agency shall employ a community school coordinator to:

                (1) implement the community school framework;

                (2) lead the needs and assets assessment;

                (3) facilitate communication between partners as a stakeholder- and community-driven approach to problem-solving;

                (4) guide data-informed continuous improvement;

                (5) manage data collection; and

                (6) align, leverage and coordinate resources for student and family success."

     SECTION 4. Section 22-32-3 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2013, Chapter 16, Section 3, as amended) is amended to read:


          A. A community schools initiative may be created in any public school in the state and may be created as a consortium of public schools.

           [B. A community schools initiative shall include the following core set of strategies and opportunities to strengthen behavior for all students:

                (1) extended learning programs, including after-school programs and summer programs;

                (2) school-based or school-linked health care;

                (3) opportunities for families to acquire skills to promote early learning and childhood development;

                (4) school and community-resource partnerships with an integrated focus on academics and other social, health and familial support;

                (5) social, health, nutrition and mental health services and support for children, family members and community members; and

                (6) case management for students in need of comprehensive support in academics, attendance and behavior.

          C.] B. A community schools initiative shall include the following:

                (1) a lead partner agency, including a public or private agency or community-based organization, to help coordinate programs and services;

                (2) an annual assessment that is a meaningful and collaborative inquiry process to develop a comprehensive understanding of local needs and assets and of community resources [informed by students, families and community and school leaders] that is conducted by the community school coordinator and informed by the site-based leadership team and that relates to the effective alignment and delivery of [core services on site] programs and services within the community school; and

                [(3) the implementation of an independently evaluated, evidence-based or results-based model of integrated student services and comprehensive supports that is proven to increase student achievement.]

                (3) the community school framework.

          C. A lead partner agency for more than three public schools shall provide a full-time position that supports the community school coordinators at those public schools.

          D. Where early childhood services and supports are indicated as a need, a community school site-based leadership team shall prioritize strong partnerships and integration with child care providers located both on and off the public school campus, including transportation to meet community needs."

     SECTION 5. Section 22-32-4 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2013, Chapter 16, Section 4, as amended) is amended to read:


          A. A school district shall bear any administrative costs associated with the establishment and implementation of a community school within the school district.

          B. Subject to the availability of funding, grants for community schools initiatives are available to a school district, a group of public schools or a single public school that has demonstrated partnerships with [any lead agency and local, private and public agencies for the purpose of establishing, operating and sustaining] the local community to establish, operate and sustain the community [schools] school framework and that meets department eligibility requirements.

          C. The department shall promulgate rules and procedures to distribute funds through a competitive grant program developed and designed in partnership with the coalition for community schools.

          [C.] D. Applications for grants for community schools initiatives shall be in the form prescribed by the department [and shall include the following information:

                (1) a statement of need, including demographic and socioeconomic information about the area to be served by the community schools initiative;

                (2) goals and expected outcomes of the initiative;

                (3) services and activities to be provided by the initiative;

                (4) written agreements for the provision of services by public and private agencies, community groups and other parties;

                (5) a work plan and budget for the initiative, including staffing requirements and the expected availability of staff;

                (6) days and hours of operation;

                (7) strategies for dissemination of information about the initiative to potential users;

                (8) training and professional development plans;

                (9) letters of endorsement and commitment from community agencies and organizations and local governments; and

                (10) any other information the department requires] to support a continuum of community school development.

          [D.] E. A school district, a group of public schools or a single public school that uses funds under this section to transform a public school into [a research- and] an evidence-based community schools initiative shall:

                (1) use rigorous, transparent, equitable and evidence-based evaluation systems to assess the effectiveness of the implementation of the community schools initiative;

                (2) provide ongoing, high-quality professional development [to staff] that:

                     (a) aligns with the community school's instructional program;

                     (b) facilitates effective teaching and learning; and

                     (c) supports the implementation of school reform strategies; and

                (3) give the community school sufficient operational flexibility in programming, curriculum, staffing, budgeting and scheduling so that the community school can fully implement a comprehensive [strategy] community school framework designed to focus on improving the community school climate, student academic achievement [and growth in reading and mathematics], attendance, behavior, [parental] family engagement and, for high schools, graduation rates and readiness for college or a career.

          F. If a grantee receives funding to implement the community schools initiative at three or more public school sites, the school district shall employ a community schools director or manager to oversee and coordinate implementation across all of the covered school sites and ensure the employment of a community school coordinator by the lead partner agency at each school site.

          G. A school district or public school may use Title 1 funds for its community schools initiative and the department may use Title 1 funds to invest in community schools statewide.

          H. The department is authorized to provide planning, implementation and renewal grants to eligible applicants as follows:

                (1) a one-year, one-time planning grant of up to fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) for each eligible public school to conduct an initial school and community needs assessment, identify community supports and services through asset mapping and establish a site-based leadership team;

                (2) annual implementation grants of one hundred fifty thousand dollars ($150,000) each year for a period of three years for each eligible school; and

                (3) at the conclusion of the initial three-year grant period, applicants may apply for a renewal grant.

          I. Eligible applicants shall provide satisfactory assurances that the applicant intends to apply for an implementation grant within six months of receiving a planning grant.

          J. Eligible applicants shall submit an application for an implementation or renewal grant to the department for each eligible community school through the grant authorization process."

     SECTION 6. A new section of the Community Schools Act is enacted to read:

     "[NEW MATERIAL] COALITION FOR COMMUNITY SCHOOLS.--The department shall appoint a "coalition for community schools" that is a statewide coalition of community school participants, which shall include local community school content experts, culturally responsive content experts and tribal leaders. The coalition shall provide advocacy, capacity building and technical assistance to ensure equitable distribution of resources to all school districts in New Mexico. The coalition shall assist the department in reviewing applications for grants and making recommendations for awards."

     SECTION 7. A new section of the Community Schools Act is enacted to read:


          A. The "community schools fund" is created as a nonreverting fund in the state treasury. The fund consists of appropriations, gifts, grants and donations. The department shall administer the fund, and money in the fund is appropriated to the department to distribute grant awards to support the development and implementation of community schools initiatives.

          B. The department shall ensure that the money expended from the community schools fund is used for the purposes stated in the Community Schools Act and shall not be used to correct for previous reductions in program services."

     SECTION 8. APPROPRIATION.--Five million one hundred thousand dollars ($5,100,000) is appropriated from the general fund to the community schools fund for expenditure in fiscal year 2020 and subsequent fiscal years to carry out the provisions of the Community Schools Act. Any unexpended or unencumbered balance remaining at the end of a fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund.

     SECTION 9. EFFECTIVE DATE.--The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2020.

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