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Las Cruces Public Schools holds inaugural State of the District Address

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KVIA) -- Las Cruces Public Schools hosted its first-ever State of the District Address Wednesday, which aimed to outline accomplishments and goals, as well as to showcase the talent of students within the district.

Students from across the district showed off their skills in the fine arts including dancing, choir, and mariachi in front of district, city, and county leaders alike.

Superintendent Ignacio Ruiz delivered his address after keynotes from several guest speakers, including LCPS alum Jamila Gilbert, one of the only Latina women to go to space.

“To say that leaving the planet was thrilling would be a really big understatement, it is really difficult to describe," said Gilbert during her keynote speech.

Superintendent Ruiz says this event was conceived as not only a way to show off the accomplishments of the district, but also to be transparent about the district’s data, and future goals with the public.

“We have to do a lot of work with literacy, lots of work to do in math, attendance rates, we have to get kids back to our schools, we have to engage them and keep them engaged, and part of that is giving them other options and pathways to graduation," said Ruiz.

He also talked about the district’s achievements in student success and other departments throughout the district, as well as breaking down the district’s finances.

“For the first time, zero audit findings," said Ruiz during his address.

ABC-7 asked Ruiz how it feels to have funding in order for the district, especially considering other borderland district troubles, such as Socorro ISD’s projected forty-one million dollar shortfall for the next school year.

“[Our finances team] is working to incorporate systems and structures to ensure that we have the fiscal responsibility of our taxpayers and our community, and the community has supported us by passing our bonds, so we want to make sure we’re using those funds as efficiently as possible," said Ruiz.

He adds the district is working on further improving safety of the schools, including looking at bringing in weapon detectors.

Article Topic Follows: New Mexico

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Jason McNabb

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