SANTA FE, N.M. -

A new computer-based program used in public schools statewide to assess the literacy skills of children in grades K-3 may decrease the amount of time spent on exams.
    
The Santa Fe New Mexican reports  that the state Public Education Department recently announced that all 89 school districts will use the new program.
    
Administrators say that, at $600,000 per year, the program costs significantly less for the state.
    
According to state officials, the longtime DIBELS program costs $1.3 million more and has been criticized for taking up too much time in the classroom.
    
Teachers have until mid-October to administer the tests.
    
However, some educators say they are worried they won't have sufficient prep time for the switch.

(Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican, http://www.sfnewmexican.com)