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Diversity in Nevada schools poses a challenge for superintendent

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Updated: 10/07/2013 8:32 pm
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- NBC launches its 4th annual Education Nation this week.

The series is an open discussion about what's working in American public schools and what still needs to be done to help struggling schools and students.

News 3’s Mackenzie Warren is heading up News 3's own Education Nation. Tonight she talks with Nevada’s new state superintendent of public instruction, Dale Erquiaga.

Erquiaga is taking over Nevada public schools at a pivotal time. There's more money and support for families like the Erquiaga's than ever in the form of zoom schools.

One kindergarten class at Lois Craig Elementary represents a slice of Clark County School District's 14 zoom schools.

“What we have going on right now is essentially is a field test of what will work for is historically a population we have underserved in this state, we have left them behind,” Erquiaga said.

Erquiaga says his greatest challenge is managing the state's diversity which includes CCSD's 315,000 students.

“So the diversity of applying same set of laws in a world that is not racially-demographically—probably hardest thing I have to do,” Erquiaga said.

And what energizes Erquiaga most about zoom schools is tracking the progress.

But, he's just one person and says CCSD needs to keep building on parental involvment:

"They’re the other half of this equation, we only have the kids for six or seven hours in the day," Erquiaga said. “It’s my job to remind us what’s good about our schools. We have pockets of excellence everywhere in our state."

A difference Erquiaga can feel and one he's promising to spread.



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