Back to School - Taos Day School

A past Taos Day School student holds the jaguar mask creation made in an art class. File photo/Greg Kreller

Taos Day School is located on the tribal lands of Taos Pueblo, just three miles from the town of Taos. Taos Day School educates tribal students five days a week, from kindergarten through 8th grade. Besides regular course activities, the school offers clubs, intramural sports and extracurricular activities.

The tribal land is on 95,000 acres and is also known as the place of the Red Willow. Tribal members are numbered at approximately 5,700. Taos Pueblo is considered to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the United States and is known for being one of the most conservative pueblos of the 19 Pueblo communities of New Mexico. Pueblo members speaking Northern Tiwa is an oral language tradition.

In 1960, Taos Pueblo became a National Historic Landmark. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966. The plaque for the historic designation says, “Due to the unique and universal value to the heritage of all mankind,” Taos Pueblo was admitted by the United Nations to the World Heritage List in 1992.

Part of Taos Pueblo's recognitions and accomplishments are that the Taos Day School has been and is still the main academic educational mainstay of its young children.

Established in the late 1800s as a Mission School by the Sisters of Loretto, Taos Day School still occupies its original location.

There are about 150 Native American students. The staff has 43 full-time and contract employees, all with diverse cultural backgrounds. Administrators at the school maintain that the diversity of staff exposes the students to a many different cultural experiences and learning opportunities.

Educational and personal enrichment opportunities at the school include a limited number of extra-curricular activities. Ninety-three percent of the student body qualifies for the free lunch program. The pupil-teacher ratio was 12:1 for the 2013-14 school year.

There are several staff members of the Taos Pueblo community who are teachers and those who are working on completing their degrees. They provide a positive environment, which demonstrates a commitment to further their education as well as active and vital participants in community culture and traditions.

One of the goals for Taos Day School is the importance of its students to recognize their potential in the academic arena and embrace their cultural background. Students are encouraged to be successful both in school and in the tribal community. Another goal for Taos Day School community members is that they embrace the culture and community service.

All Taos Day School students are held to a high standard. Each student sets their own personal goals with the classroom teacher. The school calendar is made with cultural activities and traditions in mind. Students are encouraged to have a voice for problem-solving, discussion, requesting assistance, conflict management and communication with home.

Taos Day School administration and faculty encourage all Taos Day School students to become responsible and self-directed learners. The school emphasizes the connections between learning and life skills for learning.

To learn more about Taos Day School, visit the web site

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