Adrian Martinez was excited to finally meet his attorney. The first thing the nine-year-old said was, “Are you the one who is going to help me to read?” His grandmother, Dolores, says her eyes welled up with tears.
Three years later the lawsuit that bears Adrian’s family name – Martinez vs. State of New Mexico – is now underway. Dolores says this suit, which will be decided before the end of summer, could be a game-changer.
The Latino Education Task Force has worked for nearly 15 years to get lawmakers and the executive branch to embrace the new reality in New Mexico: that more than 75 percent of all students are culturally distinct and that schools are failing to educate more than half of them. If 75 percent of students were white and suffered these statistics, we wouldn’t be talking about reform – we’d be having a revolution.
The mission of the LETF, of which I am a founding member, is the complete elimination of the achievement gap between white students and their peers.