Job : June 23, 2022

Generous grant enables expansion of services for refugees and newcomers

The $425,000 grant from the WK Kellogg Foundation will help students arriving from other countries and seeking asylum and refugee status in Albuquerque.

The APS Education Foundation received the grant, which will be used to support the Albuquerque Public Schools Refugee and Newcomer Support Program.

“Each year, tens of thousands of forced migrants arrive in the United States with the hope of building a new future for themselves and their families,” said Antonio Baca, program manager. “These children have witnessed some of the worst atrocities of modern times, yet they come to school hopeful and eager to learn.”

Funding from the WK Kellogg Foundation will create more learning opportunities and support for these students to help them reach their full potential. And the potential is great. Many speak several languages ​​and quickly become interpreters for family and friends.

The grant will help pay for:

  • A four-week newcomer summer program for middle and high school students
  • In-depth professional development for teachers and staff
  • High-quality education for newcomers to first grade at Del Norte High School
  • Opportunities for various APS departments to collaborate and develop messaging in different source languages
  • After-school programs

The number of students and families in need of guidance and resources continues to grow. Newcomer Program students are immigrants who may be unaccompanied minors, refugees or asylum seekers. Some have had a formal education and now face language barriers; others have received no formal education.

“We’ve funded several grants in schools to equip teachers with the tools they need to help newcomer students learn English and navigate their classrooms, but we’ve always hoped we could do more on a larger scale to these incredible students and their families. The generous grant from the WK Kellogg Foundation will allow us to do just that,” said Shannon Barnhill, Executive Director of the APS Education Foundation.

APS Superintendent Scott Elder added: “World events, including the war in Ukraine and the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, have resulted in the arrival of more newly arrived English language learners. in Albuquerque Public Schools. This grant from the WK Kellogg Foundation is timely, needed, and much appreciated. It will allow us to provide more programs for newcomer students, more training for teachers who work with these students, and more support for their families.