Thursday’s Top Stories

Thursday’s Five Facts

[1] State responds to new CDC guidance for schools This morning there is new guidance by the CDC when it comes to extracurricular activities in schools. The CDC is suggesting they should be canceled or held virtually as COVID cases spike. According to the CDC, the activities considered “high risk” include band, choir, and sports like football and wrestling. The state’s Activities Association states, “while these new guidelines are concerning, they trust New Mexico’s leaders to make the right decisions and hope students’ mental well-being will also be considered.” The state’s Public Education Department has not said if they will adopt the new CDC guidelines.

[2] Mark Gooch receives life sentence for murder of Mennonite woman The airman convicted of killing a Mennonite woman from Farmington will spend the rest of his life in prison. Investigators said Mark Gooch kidnapped Sasha Krause in 2020 and drove her to a remote area outside of Flagstaff, AZ, where he killed her. During Wednesday sentencing, a representative read a statement on behalf of Krause’s mother. Gooch also spoke at the sentencing, expressing his condolences but never admitting his guilt. Investigators believe he killed Krause out of resentment for the church.

[3] Clearing through Thursday, but another storm arrives Friday night Thursday morning is very cold, with temperatures in the teens, twenties, and low 30s. Snow showers continue overnight in southern New Mexico. Scattered snow showers will be possible through the morning commute, keeping roads snowy and slick, especially in and around the Sacramento Mountains.

[4] State workers, National Guard asked to fill school gap As early as next Monday state workers and National Guard members could be teaching classes to New Mexico Students. The new program will encourage state employees and National Guard Members to volunteer to become licensed substitute teachers or childcare workers. The PED Secretary says there is a statewide need for about 900 substitutes. Since winter break, 60 districts and charter schools have moved to remote learning.

[5] Albuquerque BioPark offers some free virtual field trips Students across New Mexico are being offered free virtual trips to the Biopark. Thornburg Investment Management Group will be sponsoring 20 virtual field trips. Their staff will be able to teach students about everything from penguins to bugs and there will also be animal interactions included. Typically the program is $50 and the field trips will be able to host groups as large as 35 students.