Governor Lujan Grisham cheers Senate passage of legislation establishing the Early Childhood Education and Care Department
SANTA FE — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Saturday issued the following statement after the New Mexico Senate overwhelmingly, and with bipartisan support, approved Senate Bill 22, which would establish the Early Childhood Education and Care Department, a Cabinet agency that will comprehensively coordinate and align child care, pre-kindergarten, early head start, early childhood special education and early intervention services across the state; and administer child care assistance and registered child care home programs.
“New Mexico is more than ready to transform education and child welfare, and it must start at the beginning,” Gov. Lujan Grisham said. “Early childhood education is the foundation. This new department will drive consistency across the full continuum of educational and care programs for children from birth through age five, streamlining services currently scattered across different agencies and finally delivering the high-quality head start our children have always deserved. The Early Childhood Department is not bigger government for its own sake but better government for the sake of our children. I applaud senators for their gratifying recognition of this essential new program, and I thank Sen. Padilla and all of the stakeholders who have lent and will continue to lend their support and their voices to this important change.”