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READOUT: Heinrich Brings Education Secretary To Engage With Jemez Pueblo Leaders, Students On Infrastructure, Broadband Opportunities

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) was joined by U.S. Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona for a visit to Jemez Pueblo.

PHOTOS: Heinrich Visits Jemez Pueblo With Education Secretary Cardona

Senator Heinrich and Secretary Cardona met with Pueblo of Jemez Governor Raymond Loretto and additional Tribal leaders to tour several projects around water infrastructure and broadband. Senator Heinrich highlighted how historic investments from the American Rescue Plan and Infrastructure Law are putting Tribal communities on a path towards success.

The group also discussed the Walatowa Head Start Language Immersion education program. Since the early 2000s, Jemez Pueblo has incorporated their Indigenous language and culture in the local schools’ curriculum. The local state funded public elementary school provides dual language programming in Towa and English. The Headstart is a full Towa language immersion program. Most recently, the Pueblo has approved its first full Towa immersion elementary school, grades K-6 where all subjects are taught in Towa. 

Additional key attendees included:

  • First Lieutenant Governor, Dominic Gachupin
  • Second Governor Lieutenant, Vincent Toya
  • Tribal Administrator, Senator Benny Shendo Jr.
  • Assistant Tribal Administrator, Byron Yepa
  • Contracts and Grants Administrator, Jeri Loretto
  • Public Works Director, Todd Loretto
  • Information Technology Director, Kevin Winner
  • Education Director, Kevin Shendo