In response to Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s declaration of a public health emergency, the Children, Youth, and Families Department (CYFD) and the Early Childhood Education and Care Department (ECECD) have made a series of temporary changes to New México’s early childhood policies.
“We recognize that New Mexicans face a range of circumstances and challenges. If you have the flexibility to stay home with your child, we encourage you to do so. If you need child care, we are doing everything in our power to ensure that you have access to healthy and safe care,” said Early Childhood Education and Care Department Secretary Elizabeth Groginsky. “New México is fortunate to have child care providers who are stepping up to support families and we are here to support them.”
Temporary Changes Affecting Children and Families:
Expanding child-care for first responders and health providers: During the public health emergency, CYFD will issue full-time child care assistance contracts to first responders and health providers who need child care. Please call 1-833-551-0518 to connect with the state’s child care Resource and Referral line or go to www.cyfd.org to download a child care assistance application.
Enabling family, friends, and neighbors (FFN) to deliver paid child care services: During the emergency health declaration, the state will temporarily register family, friend and neighbor (FFN) providers who may be eligible to receive child care assistance funding; interested parties can call 1-833-551-0518.
Expanding child care access for families: The state has a Child Care Resource and Referral line to help families find child care (1-800-691-9067; www.NewMexicoKids.Org.
Ensuring children have access to meals: The state applied for and received a waiver from the USDA which will allow school and non-school sites to provide meals (breakfast and lunch) to all children under age 18 needing food. Meals are provided “to-go” and must be consumed off-site, following guidelines for social distancing. New Mexicans with questions can call 1-833-551-0518 or email email@example.com. For free meal locations across New México, see list below.
Fares on All ABQ RIDE Buses Free for Students
Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller wants to make it easier for students to get Grab & Go meals while Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) are closed. Students 18 years of age and younger can ride free on all ABQ RIDE fixed route buses. As always, students age 10 and under must be accompanied by an adult on the bus.
“While our schools are stepping up to make sure kids have access to food service at 89 sites, we want parents who have to work and families who don’t have access to a vehicle to have a reliable, free way for their kids to access these meals,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “Free fares on our buses will help us eliminate barriers that create food insecurity in our city.”
“Students do not have to go to the school they attend to receive their meals. They only have to access the school site most convenient to them,” says Danny Holcomb, Transit Director. “Our buses can pick up these students and families closest to where they live and get them to the closest participating site.”
The only exception to this protocol is for students at New Futures High School at 5400 Cutler Ave NE in Albuquerque. Students who attend this school will need to access meals at the New Futures school site exclusively.
Albuquerque Public Schools:
Free Grab & Go Meals:10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday. Available to all school-age students under the age of 18. Students must be present to receive a meal. Parents/students will be able to pick-up meals via a drive-through line at the entrance of participating schools. Students must be present to receive a meal. Students do not have to go to the school they attend to participate, so they may access the school site most convenient for them.
A Montoya, Abq High, Alameda, Alamosa, Alvarado, Amijio, Apache, Arroyo del Oso, Atrisco, Barcelona, Bel Air, Carlos Rey, Chaparral, Chelwood, Cleveland, Cochiti, Collet Park, Comanche, Dennis Chavez, Dolores Gonzales, Duranes, E.G. Ross, East San Jose, Emerson, Eugene Field, Garfield, George I Sanchez, Georgia O’Keeffe, Gov Bent, Grant, Harrison, Hawthorne, Hayes, Helen Cordero, Highland HS, Hodgin, Hoover, Inez, James Monroe, Janet Khan ES (Eubank), Jefferson, Jimmy Carter, John Adams, Kennedy, Kirtland, Kit Carson, La Luz, La Mesa, Lavaland, Lew Wallace, Longfellow, Los Padillas, Los Ranchos, Lowell, Macarthur, Manzano Mesa, Marie Hughes, Mark Twain, Mary Ann Binford, McCollum, McKinley, Mission Avenue, Mitchell, Montezuma, Navajo, New Futures (Any APS student can access meals at New Futures. Infant formula will also be made available to New Futures students only.), Painted Sky, Pajarito, Reginald Chavez, Rio Grande, Rudolf Anaya, Seven Bar, Sierra Vista, Sombra, SR Marmon, Taft, Taylor, Tres Volcanes, Truman, Valle Vista, Valley, Van Buren, Washington, West Mesa, Wherry, Whittier, Wilson, Zia, and Zuni.
For free meal locations across New México, see list below.
For New México statewide meal sites: www.newmexico.gov/education/meal-sites-for-children.
For More New Mexico News: ELSEMANARIONEWMEXICO.COM