Early education options limited for NM kids, US education secretary says

Posted at: 09/09/2013 12:57 PM
Updated at: 09/09/2013 1:55 PM
By: Nikki Ibarra and Elizabeth Reed, KOB Eyewitness News 4

SANTA FE -- U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan kicked off his back-to-school bus tour in Santa Fe to talk about the importance of early education.

Duncan made his first stop at the United Way of Santa Fe County. He said the program serves as a role model for other schools because of its programs that help kids learn even before pre-K.

Duncan said almost two-thirds of New Mexico 4-year-olds don't have access to early education. But he's hoping to get Congress to pass a bipartisan bill to change that.

"There is a chance for New Mexico to be a national leader here," he said. "There are a lot more children who need access and that's what we want to work on together."

Duncan will next stop in Albuquerque, where he will talk about improving struggling schools and college affordability. He will also travel to Socorro, where technology will be the topic of discussion.