Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is backing a state Senate bill that would create the Early Childhood Education and Care Department.
Senate Bill 22, sponsored by Sen. Michael Padilla, D-Albuquerque, was passed by the Senate Rules Committee without opposition Wednesday.
“A child’s early years of life are formative and constitute the foundation for his or her future health, development and scholastic achievement,” Lujan Grisham wrote in a statement. “It is our collective responsibility to ensure New Mexico’s children are afforded the educational opportunities and resources necessary for success.”
The department would assume control of all early childhood programs now spread among four departments: Children, Youth and Families; Public Education; Health; and Human Services.