We have some sad news, Summer Camp will NOT happen this year at TDS, and the future of After School next year is uncertain.
As many of you know the State Public Education Department (PED) began an audit of the Taos C.R.E.A.T.E. Out-of-School time program in April of 2014. Because we were in an audit process, the State PED also did not award funds for out-of-school programming this year 14/15. To date we have had no result of the audit and the school has not been reimbursed anything of the $225,000 it was awarded for 13/14 school year. The State by law can take all the time it wants to audit — even more than a year. We have been in the audit process for 13 months now. The Tribe and parents reached out to Representatives, Senators, and newspapers but still there has been no communication from the PED since a document request in July 2014.
Programming at the Taos Day School (TDS) this 14/15 school year was paid for by the school and the non-profit partner Working on Wellness (WOW). The school administrators and WOW did everything they could to keep the doors open this year, but the Bureau of Indian Education Superintendent, Casey Sovo, recently met with TDS administrators and forbid them to continue any out-of-school time programming. The school met the overall budget restrictions, but not the specific line items.
We hope that the Tribe and/or Working on Wellness will partner with the school to keep the out-of-school time programming happening in some capacity and are working toward that goal.
The out-of-school time programs have been open since 2003, and since 2005 75% or more of the school population have become regular attendees. The program provided Culture, Recreation, Education And Technology Experiences (C.R.E.A.T.E.) after school and during the summer.
Following are links to articles about the audit and similar behavioral health audits, and a video about the CREATE success program.
Two months in, still no after-school programs at Taos Pueblo
Cody Hooks | The Taos News | Oct 29, 2014
Judge unseals part of behavioral health audit
Patrick Malone | The New Mexican | Dec 19, 2014