K-12 Math in New Mexico

k-12 math education in New Mexico

New Mexico is among the first few states that adopted the Common Core State Standards. However, instead of seeing improvement in K-12 math performance, New Mexico continues to experience a decline in K-12 students’ math academic proficiency. 31% of Grade 4 students and 23% of Grade 8 students in New Mexico scored at or above math proficiency in 2012-2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) before the fully implementation of the new curriculum. The number dropped to 29% for Grade 4 students and 21% for Grade 8 students in 2019. New Mexico tied for the last place with Alabama in 2019 NAEP Math Scores, ranking 49th among the 50 states. Moreover, 26% of high school students in New Mexico do not graduate within four years, resulting in the last place for high school graduation rate among all states. So, what went wrong with K-12 math education in New Mexico?


Common Core State Standards in New Mexico

The Common Core Math Standards in New Mexico contain practical skills that students should learn across all mathematical disciplines at all grade levels. These skills include: understanding and solving problems, abstract and quantitative reasoning, mathematical arguments and reasoning, modeling, using appropriate tools, communicating clearly, understanding repeated reasoning, and patterns and structure. Besides these practical skills, students should also master specific math knowledge as they progress from K-12. 


Grade Concept Domains
Kindergarten – Grade 5 N/A Counting, cardinality, thinking algebraically, mathematical operations, data, measurement, geometry, Base 10 and fractional numbers and operations
Grade 6 – 8 N/A Statistics and probability, geometry, equations and expressions, the number system, ratios, proportional relationships, functions
Grade 9 -12 Number and Quantity Vector and matrix quantities, quantitative reasoning, the complex and real number systems
Algebra Creating and finding structure in equations, polynomials, rational expressions, reasoning with inequalities, reasoning with equations
Functions Interpreting and creating functions; models – linear, exponential and quadratic; trigonometric functions
Modeling Creating and applying models appropriately within all concept areas
Geometry Dimensions and measurements, circles, congruence, trigonometry, similarity, right angles, using equations to express properties, geometric modeling
Statistics and Probability Data interpretation, inferences and conclusions, probability rules, conditional probability, decision making


2021 School District Performance in New Mexico

New Mexico has a total of 142 school districts. According to the U.S. Department of Education, Los Alamos Public Schools is #1 Best School District in New Mexico, followed by Texico Municipal Schools in #2, and San Jon Municipal Schools in #3. These rankings are based on state test scores, college readiness, graduation rates, SAT/ACT scores, teacher quality, public school district ratings, and more.


Rank School District Rank School District
#1 Los Alamos Public Schools #26 Tatum Municipal Schools
#2 Texico Municipal Schools #27 Wagon Mound Public Schools
#3 San Jon Municipal Schools #28 To’Hajiilee Day School
#4 Animas Public Schools #29 Quemado Independent Schools
#5 Grady Municipal Schools #30 Vaughn Municipal Schools
#6 Cloudcroft Municipal Schools #31 Portales Municipal Schools
#7 New Mexico School for the Deaf #32 Floyd Municipal Schools
#8 Corona Municipal Schools #33 Truth or Consequences Municipal School District
#9 Rio Rancho Public Schools #34 Maxwell Municipal Schools
#10 Dora Municipal Schools #35 Albuquerque Public Schools
#11 Elida Municipal Schools #36 Springer Municipal Schools
#12 Des Moines Municipal Schools #37 Alamo Navajo Community School
#13 Reserve Public Schools #38 Santa Rosa Consolidated Schools
#14 Artesia Public Schools #39 Moriarty-Edgewood School District
#15 Melrose Public Schools #40 Gadsden Independent Schools
#16 Farmington Municipal Schools #41 Estancia Municipal Schools
#17 Roy Municipal Schools #42 Mission Achievement & Success
#18 Cimarron Municipal Schools #43 Taos Municipal Schools
#19 Clayton Municipal Schools #44 Clovis Municipal Schools
#20 House Municipal Schools #45 Lovington Municipal Schools
#21 Mosquero Municipal Schools #46 Santa Fe Public Schools
#22 Las Cruces Public Schools #47 Magdalena Municipal Schools
#23 Fort Sumner Municipal Schools #48 Los Lunas Public Schools
#24 Logan Municipal Schools #49 Mountainair Public Schools
#25 Capitan Municipal Schools #50 Jemez Mountain Public Schools


Based on the state math assessment test scores, 47% of students in Los Alamos Public Schools (rank #1) are proficient in math; 24% of students in Capitan Municipal Schools (rank #25) are proficient in math; 12% of students in Jemez Mountain Public Schools (rank #50) are proficient in math. Since there are no direct correlations calculated between teacher qualities, college preparedness, resources, or facilities to school district rankings, it is difficult to conclude as to why some school districts in New Mexico have better math performance than the others.


Looking to improve your child’s math education? Contact us today at 1-844-628-4243 to book a free assessment! For more math educational resources, subscribe to Math Project’s newsletter by signing up with your email below.



Standards in Your State – http://www.corestandards.org/
Public education in New Mexico – https://ballotpedia.org/
Academic Proficiency – https://newmexicoschools.com/
Pre-K – 12 Rankings – https://www.usnews.com/
Graduation and College and Career Readiness – https://newmexicoschools.com/
Common Core State Standards in New Mexico – https://study.com/
2021 Best School Districts in New Mexico – https://www.niche.com/

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