MATT MONTAÑO

Deputy Commissioner of Special Populations, Texas Education Agency

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As deputy commissioner of special populations at the Texas Education Agency, Matt Montaño oversees efforts to strengthen and support special education throughout the state. This work encompasses programs at all levels of the public education system involving students, parents, and teachers, as well as campus- and district-level administrators.

Montaño was most recently deputy secretary of teaching and learning at the New Mexico Public Education Department. He previously served in New Mexico as the state’s director of educator quality, where his responsibilities included overseeing the bureaus of professional licensure; professional ethics; professional development; Indian education; bilingual/multicultural education; virtual schools; instructional materials; and math and science. Montaño led the development of the NMTEACH Teacher and Principal Effectiveness system, which has been recognized as one of the few state evaluation systems to assign effectiveness ratings appropriately to teachers across all ranges of performance.

He began his career as a substitute teacher in Bernalillo, New Mexico. In the same community, he later became a classroom teacher, assistant principal, and principal.

Montaño graduated from the University of New Mexico with a bachelor’s in history and religion and received his master’s in special education from the College of Santa Fe. He is a member of the second cohort of the Future Chiefs leadership development program.