Pregnant and parenting students will be allowed four more days of absence, along with added time to make up work missed, and home-schooled students will be allowed to participate in up to three school activities, according to policy changes approved by the Tucumcari Public School Board at its June 17 meeting.
The changes meet requirements of new laws passed by the New Mexico legislature, said David Johnson, assistant superintendent of Tucumcari schools.
To qualify for the extra time, a pregnant or parenting student must notify school officials of their condition as soon as possible after the student becomes aware of the pregnancy or begins parenting of a child under 13 years of age, Johnson said.
Home schooled students had been allowed to participate on one athletic team or in one school activity before this school year, and this year, they can participate in three such activities, Johnson said.
Home-schooled students may also take classes in the public school, according to present policies.
At the June 17 meeting, the school board also approved applications for $600,000 in federal money through Title I and Title II of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Title I money, which accounts for more than $494,000, pays teacher salaries at all three Tucumcari schools, including the elementary, middle and high schools, Johnson said.
Title II money pays for programs like summer school and tutoring, but up to $45,000 of the more than $94,500 requested can be used for Title I programs, Johnson said.
Title I money, designated for disadvantaged students, can be used for all students in the Tucumcari district because a high majority of the district’s students come from disadvantaged circumstances, Johnson said.
The board also approved an application for $18,143 for teacher recruitment and retention efforts that can include the use of signing bonuses and other financial incentives. The application is for federal funds distributed through the state Public Education Department’s Rural Low-Income Schools program.
Tucumcari school policies updated