FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) – The first school in a newly created education network focusing on New Mexico’s Native American communities prepared to open Tuesday in Shiprock.
Officials said the Dream Dine Charter School will start with two kindergarten classes and one first-grade class, the Albuquerque Journal reported. It plans to add a grade each school year, up to eighth grade.
The Native American Community Academy in Albuquerque established the school as part of its NACA-Inspired Schools Network. The goal is for the network to operate 10 schools in the next three years that aim to make education for Native Americans more innovative, network executive director Kara Bobroff said.
“We’re just trying to think on a local level, how we can work together on providing native education in a different way,” Bobroff said.
Dine School workers have met with students’ parents to ask them about their expectations.
A state education committee approved the school’s contract and operations this summer, and funding from the New Mexico Public Education Department began, the Farmington Daily Times reported.
The school’s contract outlined multiple performance goals, including 10 percent growth in language proficiency on the Navajo Oral Language Assessment and a 90 percent student attendance rate. School officials also want to use an online system to gauge how well students master the curriculum.
The school will open behind the Shiprock Chapter House, which collaborated with Dream Dine board members on a resolution requiring portable classrooms on the site.