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Fri Jun 9, 2017, 09:24 PM

New Mexico Public Education Secretary Skandera to step down

New Mexico Public Education Secretary Hanna Skandera formally announced her resignation Thursday, ending a tumultuous 6 1/2-year tenure as the chief defender of Republican Gov. Susana Martinez’s education reforms, a role that made her perhaps the most controversial and polarizing department head in state government.

Martinez, who appointed Skandera, praised her as a fighter for education reform who made a difference, particularly in improving the state’s high school graduation rate. Democratic lawmakers long have said Skandera was bad for public schools, committed to too much testing and had too little interest in learning.

Skandera, 43, also was also a target of rank-and-file teachers and their unions. Both said she knew little or nothing about the daily challenges they faced in schools and classrooms since she spent little time working as an educator herself. Skandera had a stint as a substitute teacher in California and some work teaching courses on abstinence and birth control as part of a peer education program for Catholic Charities.

Skandera, who will officially leave her $126,250-per-year job in two weeks, wouldn’t say why she is quitting now, but said that she tendered her resignation without having another job lined up.

Read more: http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/education/new-mexico-public-education-secretary-skandera-to-step-down/article_eb0c4267-64a4-57cf-84c7-1740982e50d8.html

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