NM Regional Education Cooperatives Association

Strategic Plan – DRAFT

WHY STRATEGIC PLANNING?

As NM RECA, we wanted to create a guide for all actions and decisions involving the association. This involved

  • Developing a “roadmap” for carrying out the Association’s mission and vision
  • Naming the goals of the Association, collectively based on the association’s mission and vision, core values and strategic priorities
  • Creating realistic benchmarks/measures of progress over time, tied to the priorities
  • Developing a plan with input from all stakeholders associated with NM RECA

We believe our strategic plan will serve as the communication tool for NM RECA; help in measuring and monitoring growth for the Association, as well as the executive director; and prompt change to achieve the Association’s strategic priorities.

  • Will serve as the communication tool for NM RECA
  • Will aid in measuring progress and monitoring performance for the Association, as well as the association’s executive director.
  • Prompts change to achieve the Association’s strategic priorities

 

RECA Strategic Plan Contents

ABOUT THE REGIONAL EDUCATION COOPERATIVES

In 1984, the New Mexico State Board of Education established Regional Center Cooperatives (RCCs) under SBE Regulation No. 84.6. In 1993, the New Mexico State Legislature created Regional Education Cooperatives, Act 22- 2B-1 to 22-2B-6, NMSA 1978, as “state agencies administratively attached to the Public Education Department.”

Unlike educational service agencies in other states, Regional Education Cooperatives (RECs) receive minimal direct, state funding to support the programs and services they provide. Their existence and success are dependent upon providing programs and services that would otherwise be cost prohibitive to their member districts. The RECs depend upon revenues from contracted delivery of services to districts, grants, inter-governmental agreements, and joint-powers agreements.

ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION

The New Mexico Regional Education Cooperatives Association (NMRECA) is composed of ten Regional Education Cooperatives that are found throughout New Mexico supporting eighty-nine school districts, charter schools and state-supported schools, with direct services to sixty-eight member districts. The NMRECA envisions a system of regional and statewide collaboration ensuring all New Mexico children, families, schools, and communities receive high-quality and comprehensive education and health services. NMRECA was organized in 1997 by the Executive Directors of the regional education cooperatives. NMRECA is affiliated with the NM Coalition of Educational Leaders (NMCEL), Association of Educational Service Agencies (AESA), Association of School Business Officials (ASBO), Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), and National Staff Development Council.

OUR LEADERSHIP

BOBBIE GUTIERREZ, RECA Executive Director

NM RECA
http://nmreca.org
(505) 670-2060
bj.gutierrez@nmreca.org

DAVID BOWMAN, Executive Director

Four Corners Regional Education Cooperative-#1
http://nmrec1.org
(505) 632-4300
director@nmrec1.org
325 N. Bergin Lane
Bloomfield, NM 87413

ADAN DELGADO, Executive Director

Northwest Regional Education Cooperative-#2
http://nwrec2.org
(575) 756-1274
adan@nwrec2.org
P.O. Box 113
Chama, NM 87520

STEPHEN AGUIRRE, Executive Director

High Plains Regional Education Cooperative #3
http://hprec.com
(575) 445-7090
saguirre@hprec.org
101 North Second
Raton, NM 87740

JAMES ABREU, Executive Director

Northeast Regional Education Cooperative #4
http://rec4.com
(505) 426-2262
rec4@nmhu.edu
P.O. Box 927
Las Vegas, NM 87701

MARIA JARAMILLO, Executive Director

Central Region Education Cooperative #5
http://crecnm.org
(575) 889-3412
mjaramillo@crecnm.org
4216 Balloon Park Road NE
Albuquerque, NM 87109

SCOTT MCMATH, Executive Director

Regional Education Cooperative #6
http://rec6.net
(575) 562-4455
smcmath@rec6.net
1500 South Avenue K
Station #9
Portales, NM 88130

CLIFF BURCH, Executive Director

Southeast Education Cooperative #7
http://hobbsschools.net
(575) 393-0755
315 East Clinton
Hobbs, NM 88240

KELLEY ALSUP, Executive Director

Pecos Valley Regional Education Cooperative #8
http://pvrec8.combr /> (575) 748-6100
kalsup@pvrec8.com
2218 W. Grand Ave.
Artesia, NM 88210

BRYAN DOOLEY, Executive Director

Region 9 Education Cooperative
http://rec9nm.org
(575) 257-2368
bryan@regionix.org
143 El Paso Road
Ruidoso, NM 88345

VALERIE BREA, Executive Director

Southwest Regional Education Cooperative #10
http://swrecnm.org
(575) 494-0166
vbrea@swrecnm.org
1321 E. Poplar
Deming, NM 88030

OUR THEORY OF CHANGE

Our theory of change is based loosely on Lewin’s Change Management Model. As an Association we wanted to revisit our vision, mission, Association goals, and engage more in the collective work of our Association, while keeping the unique qualities and values of each individual REC. We also wanted to change some long-standing practices with the NM Public Education Department (PED), as well as some other state agencies to create a balance of work for the RECs and show a sense of fairness about work distribution. For example, this work included redefining our process and procedures for how we engage in work with partner agencies, such as developing intergovernmental agreements, annual reporting under the umbrella of the Association, and ways to engage NM RECA in more work at the regional and national level.

Simply said, we wanted to “unfreeze” some existing structures and processes, make changes and adjustments, and “refreeze” to secure the new structures and processes.

OUR VISION

Every Student * Every Region * Every Day

OUR MISSION

To collaboratively link and implement local, regional, state, and federal initiatives to improve outcomes for all students.

OUR CORE VALUES

Our core values reflect the fundamental beliefs of NM RECA. Our actions are distinguished by the highest standards of professional behavior, including trust, honesty, fairness, integrity, and mutual respect, which is reflected in our work at each induvial REC, and in our collective work as an Association.

  • We adhere to the highest ethical standards in all we do.
  • We develop, support, and respect collaborative relationships.
  • Our purpose is to “make a difference” for every student, every region, every day.

OUR ASSOCIATION GOALS

Goal One: Participate in statewide discussions to influence change and strengthen relationships with other state agencies and legislative bodies to promote the value and use of the RECs for the design and implementation of statewide educational initiatives.

Goal Two: Strengthen and Develop the individual RECs through collaboration fostered by RECA.

Goal Three: Collaborate with state agencies and legislative bodies to develop a common reporting system for RECs under the umbrella of RECA.

Goal Four: Establish partnerships with other states’ Education Service Agencies (ESAs) to leverage NM RECA’s ability to collaborate and participate in Regional and National initiatives.

MESSAGE FROM NM RECA PRESIDENT, MARIA JARAMILLO

The Regional Education Cooperatives are pleased to release the New Mexico Regional Education Cooperative Association’s first strategic plan. We believe the plan is well-developed, clear, concise, comprehensible, and most importantly attainable. The REC Executive Directors named four overarching Association Goals and our strategic plan has been developed from these goals.

As an Association, we are committed to providing an excellent support system for the districts we serve. Our plan is a transparent framework that names how we will go about our collective work as an association for the next three years to achieve a more effective, efficient, and high-functioning system of support for districts and schools throughout the state of New Mexico.

We are confident with the implementation of our strategic plan, our association can realize tremendous growth resulting in better services and support to school districts, as well as improve our services and help to the New Mexico Public Education Department and the other state agencies we serve.

Sincerely,
Maria Jaramillo, President
NM RECA

A MESSAGE FROM NM RECA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BOBBIE GUTIERREZ

In my short time as the Executive Director of the New Mexico Regional Education Cooperatives Association (NM RECA), one thing is very clear, our Executive Directors from each of the RECs are passionate about the work they do and the services and support they provide to their member-districts, charter schools and state-supported schools, as well as the respective state agencies they work with daily.

I have been extremely excited about my work with NM RECA the past year at a time when we are planning our work in this post-pandemic era. What matters most is that we provide excellent services and support to all we serve.

I am anxious to implement the strategic priorities we have identified within each of our NM RECA goals and where this work takes us over the next 3-5 years. As we roll out our plan during this time-period, we know that our work will need to be adjusted and changed to meet the needs of our partners. We will learn from our experiences and adjust our plan as we monitor results. We know that our strategic planning decisions affect our partners, so we commit to open and transparent communication as we implement changes for the Association.

Sincerely,
Bobbie J. Gutierrez, Executive Director
NM RECA

ASSOCIATION GOAL ONE

Goal: Participate in statewide discussions to influence change and strengthen relationships with other state agencies and legislative bodies to promote the value and use of the RECs for the design and implementation of statewide educational initiatives.

Outcome 1.1 Familiarize PED employees, as well as employees from other state agencies to the REC structure, policies, and procedures.

Overall Approach/Strategy: Our charge is to educate employees at PED, as well as other state agencies in our services and support; management of intergovernmental agreements and grants; procurement requirements and procedures, reimbursable billing, and RFP’s development and selection process for vendors to deliver services designated by partner agencies.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
1.1.1 Create orientation and training for new cabinet members and department/division directors at PED and other state agencies provided services by the RECs. July 1, 2022; and ongoing as per quarterly schedule RECA Executive Director;
REC Executive Directors
Orientation and trainings are calendared and supplied quarterly to state agencies.
1.1.2 Develop online seminar for employees unable to take part quarterly training/orientation. July 2022; and updated as appropriate RECA Executive Director;
REC Executive Directors
Online seminar is created and updated annually or as appropriate.
1.1.3 Develop NM RECA Guide and companion brochure to REC structures, policies, and procedures. July 2022 and updated as appropriate RECA Executive Director with input from REC Executive Directors Guide is developed and posted on NM RECA Website as well as collective REC websites.
1.1.4 Develop sustainable marketing plan to include, not only printed materials, but videos podcasts, and webinars Fall 2022 and ongoing. RECA Executive Director;
REC Executive Directors
RECA Partners
Marketing plan created and approved by REC Executive Directors.
Printed materials created by graphic designer; videos created highlighting the work of each of our RECs; training webinars in place and monthly podcasts occurring.

ASSOCIATION GOAL ONE

Goal: Participate in statewide discussions to influence change and strengthen relationships with other state agencies and legislative bodies to promote the value and use of the RECs for the design and implementation of statewide educational initiatives.

Outcome 1.2 Place NM RECA documents on an annual schedule for review and update as appropriate so all information published and posted is current, document, and formally adopt changes, as well as update website to be more user- friendly and ensuring all information is up to date.

Overall Approach/Strategy: Ensure procedures and processes are in place for keeping important documents and the NM RECA website update to date by setting up an annual review calendar in April of each year.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
1.2.1 Review policies and procedures annually. April 2023 and updated annually as appropriate RECA Executive Directors;
Executive Directors
Policies and Procedures are reviewed and updated annually in April.
1.2.2 Review Constitution and By-Laws annually April 2023 and updated annually as appropriate RECA Executive Directors;
Executive Directors
Constitution and By-Laws are reviewed and updated annually in April of each year.
1.2.3 Redesign NM RECA website to be more user friendly. July/August 2023 RECA Executive Directors;
Executive Directors
Update and maintain website. Find resources for updating website.

ASSOCIATION GOAL ONE

Goal: Participate in statewide discussions to influence change and strengthen relationships with other state agencies and legislative bodies to promote the value and use of the RECs for the design and implementation of statewide educational initiatives.

Outcome 1.3 Create strong REC presence with the NM Legislature and LFC and LESC.

Overall Approach/Strategy: Regular meetings with legislators and attendance at LFC and LESC meetings scheduled throughout the state is essential for placing a stronger emphasis on the important work of the RECs and services and support provided to member and non-members districts.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
1.3.1 Develop calendar for Legislative Activities occurring throughout the year, statewide. Summer 2022; to be updated monthly based on LFC and LESC meeting schedules. NM RECA Executive Director;
REC Executive Directors
Update and maintain legislative calendars.;
Ensure there is a REC presence at all LFC and LESC meetings.
1.3.2 Develop NM RECA Legislative Priorities Summer/Fall 2022 and annually NM RECA Executive Director;
NM RECA Officers
Legislative Platform developed annually and shared with PED, Legislators, and LFC and LESC prior to the Legislative session.
1.3.3 Ensure REC Executive Directors schedule an annual event for legislators in their respective regions. Examples in include breakfasts, luncheons, or dinners; or meet and greet followed by round-table discussions including superintendents from respective regions. Summer 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director;
NM RECA Officers
REC Executive Directors
Annual events are planned and scheduled. Budget for such activities set up for annual event.
1.3.4 Establish semi-annual meetings with the Secretary of Education, LFC and LESC Directors, other Cabinet Secretaries, as appropriate. July 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director;
NM RECA Officers
Semi-annual meetings are set up and occurring; agendas are developed in advance of the meeting based on agreed-upon topics.

ASSOCIATION GOAL TWO

Goal: Strengthen and develop the individual RECs through collaboration fostered by NM RECA.

Outcome 2.1 Create foundations that each REC should have in place such as strong technology support, curriculum expertise, professional development and training resources, special education expertise, etc., as well as foundational pieces developed by the Association in which the RECs partner to provide statewide services and support.

Overall Approach/Strategy: NM RECA will work collaboratively with the individual RECs to ensure foundations are in place and create foundational pieces in partnership to provide a wide variety of services and support to both member and non-member districts, charter schools and state-supported schools.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
2.1.1 Research and explore possibilities of writing some federal grants as a RECA collaborative. July 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director
REC Executive Directors
Success in selecting and writing federal grants that receive funding for specific initiatives.
2.1.2 Create white papers on education-related topics in which the RECs have expertise (e.g., Martinez-Yazzie, Special Education, Literacy) July 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director
REC Executive Directors
Publication of white papers.
2.1.3 Get acquainted with PED and other state agency department directors; inquire about strategic department plans. July 2022 and on-going NM RECA Executive Director Partnerships established with department directors for providing services and support through the RECs.

ASSOCIATION GOAL TWO

Goal: Strengthen and develop the individual RECs through collaboration fostered by NM RECA.

Outcome 2.2 Expand Academic Bowl to include all RECs.

Overall Approach/Strategy: The NM RECA Academic Bowl will be set up with the goal of fostering the pursuit of academic excellence, promoting a spirit of academic competition and sportsmanship, and providing social opportunities for the development of collegiality among students and coaches from around the state.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
2.2.1 Establish Academic Bowl Committee to work collaboratively with REC 9 and 10 to develop Academic Bowl for NM RECA to include all RECs statewide. July 2022 - December 2022 NM RECA Executive Director
REC 9 Executive Director
REC 10 Executive Director
Academic Bowl Committee
Annual Academic Bowl set up for Spring 2023 and ongoing.
2.2.2 Identify Vendor sponsorship for RECA Academic Bowl; Celebrity Host/MC; Venue July 2022-September 2022 NM Executive Director
Academic Bowl Committee
Annual vendor sponsorships in place; future
2.2.3 Generate marketing plan for advertising Academic Bowl to include website announcements, brochures and other materials and information. July 2022 - December 2022 NM RECA Director
Academic Bowl Committee
Marketing resources and budget set up for annual event.
2.2.4 Create partnerships with other professional organizations for in-kind and financial support. July 2022 - December 2022 NM RECA Director
Academic Bowl Committee
Partnerships named and engaged in support for annual RECA Academic Bowl.

ASSOCIATION GOAL THREE

Goal: Collaborate with state agencies and legislative bodies to develop a common reporting system for RECs under the umbrella of RECA.

Outcome 3.1 Work in collaboration to set up common reporting procedures for RECs based on state law within SB-96 (passed by the legislature for implementation in July 2021).

Caviat: Since their start in 1984, Regional Education Cooperatives through their administrative attachment to the NM Public Education Department are allowed to enter into intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs) with PED, as well as other state agencies. Each REC, since that time, has grown differently in terms of programs and services, as well as work they engage in work for their member districts based on the needs of their districts, and those state agencies.

The RECs recognize there will always be some discrepancy between Budgeted Revenues and Expenditures and Actual Revenues and Expenditures because of changes and program and use of funds directed by the IGA issuing agency. However, the RECs agree there can be commonality in much of our reporting and are committed to developing some common processes and procedures based on the work they do, while recognizing the individual and unique services provided by each of the RECs.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
3.1.1 Work with Education Researchers through NM RECA partnership with the LANL Foundation to develop a common template for Annual Reports while allowing for the unique services, support and programs offered by each REC. April 2022-August 2022;
reviewed annually
NM RECA Director;
NM RECA Officers;
REC Executive Directors
Completed template that meets the needs of NM RECA as well as the respective RECs.
3.1.2 Work collaboratively with the Open Books Dashboard Workgroup to create transparency in reporting. Spring/Summer 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director;
Two REC Executive Directors;
two REC Business Managers
Reporting process is agreed to by the workgroup and implemented by the RECs.
3.1.3 Develop common structure for bi-annual SDAA (State-Directed Administrative Activities) reporting. Fall 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Directors;
REC Executive Directors
Business Managers
Common reporting structure developed and collaboratively agreed to by the REC Executive Directors and used as the REC reporting process going forward.
3.1.4 Re-establish Business Managers Group, and utilize backward planning model to create
  1. Standardization of UCOA (Uniform Chart of Accounts)
  2. Standardize Reporting to the extent possible based on the work of the respective RECs.
Fall 2022 and ongoing NM RECA Executive Director;
Business Managers
Established and utilized UCOA specific to the RECs from overall UCOA used for state reporting.

ASSOCIATION GOAL FOUR

Goal: Establish partnerships with other states’ Education Service Agencies (ESAs) to leverage NM RECA’s ability to collaborate and participate in Regional and National initiatives.

Outcome 4.1 NM RECA continue to work collaboratively with Association of Education Service Agencies (AESA) to expand ideas, sharing of information and create partnerships at the state and national levels.

Overall Approach/Strategy The RECA understands that a wide range of perspectives is critical to developing effective governance for each of our RECs. We also recognize the need to broaden our professional networks based on common issues and interests. We believe sincere and collaborative relationships will strengthen our Association and our individual RECs.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
4.1.1 Create RECA Induction Plan for New REC Directors Superintendents, School Board Members and Legislators. Fall 2022 - ongoing RECA Executive Director Induction Plans in place for each stakeholder group.
4.1.2 Identified budget for increased participation and expanded opportunities in working with AESA; increase networking connections and partnerships at the national level, and with other states. Fall 2022 - ongoing RECA Executive Director;
REC Executive Directors
NM RECA and individual RECs will begin to have a great presence at AESA National Conferences and convenings.
Budgets set up for participation in such activities.
4.1.3 Invite AESA Executive Director and other State Directors to meet with RECA semi-annually. Fall 2022 - ongoing RECA Executive Director
REC Directors
Semi-annual meetings set up and occurring regularly.
4.1.4 Explore partnership opportunities with other education agencies in border states. Fall 2022 - ongoing RECA Executive Director
REC Directors
Partnership opportunities set up and activities/initiatives planned.

ASSOCIATION GOAL FOUR

Goal: Establish partnerships with other states’ Education Service Agencies (ESAs) to leverage NM RECA’s ability to collaborate and participate in Regional and National initiatives.

Outcome 4.2 Currently, NM RECA is an association in name only. We have started conversations about making it a formal association for the RECs, and one that would be recognized by the state as an official association.

Overall Approach/Strategy NM RECA understands that to become an official association we would need to explore this possibility with our legal counsel, and the weigh the “pros and cons” of moving the Association to an official status with the State of NM. We recognize there would be many advantages to becoming an official association such as the ability to write local, state, and federal grants, sponsor fundraising events, accept donations and offer state-wide activities on behalf of the RECs, we also recognize the need to move cautiously and thoroughly in exploring this change in status for NM RECA.

Strategic Priorities Timeframe Responsibility Milestones (Measures)
4.2 Explore with legal counsel the pros and cons of becoming an official association within the State of NM; decide if this is a practical and helpful choice for the RECs as a whole. Fall 2022 - ongoing RECA Executive Director Commitment by all RECS to the possibility of becoming an official Association in New Mexico. Determination made by June 30, 2022, if we want to pursue this choice in FY 2023-24.