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New Mexico: Working in Education in New Mexico

This list also contains online schools that accept students from New Mexico

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Teacher's Aides in New Mexico

In March 2004, New Mexico established a state minimum annual wage of $11,000 for teacher's aides and other paraprofessionals throughout the state. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the estimated mean annual salary for teacher assistants in New Mexico was $18,400 in May 2008.

New Mexico is one of eleven states that have paraprofessional professional development programs. In addition, New Mexico is one of ten states that have policies that require paraprofessionals with instructional duties to be certified. New Mexico is also one of the twelve states where state requirements for paraprofessionals exceed federal requirements.

Technology Education

The Department of Education has funding to develop a statewide plan to integrate educational technology into the public schools and coordinate technology-related education activities with other agencies.

New Mexico does not have a virtual school. Nonetheless, the Center for Digital Education (CDE) recently ranked New Mexico number six among all the states on its online learning policies and practices. CDE is a national research and advisory institute for K-12 and higher education technology.

Curriculum and Instruction

New Mexico bans the teaching of creationism and restricts the statewide science curriculum to the teaching of evolution.

State education leaders are debating the need for a Hispanic Education Act that would include curriculum on Hispanic language and culture.

The mean annual salary for the approximately 530 instructional coordinators in New Mexico was $52,060 in May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Instructional coordinators work with teachers on curriculum and instruction and technology integration.

Education Managers in New Mexico

Between 1994 and 2004, over one-half of New Mexico schools had three or more principals. The average age of principals in New Mexico is 51. Schools report difficulty attracting high quality candidates for principal positions. The total number of degrees in education administration awarded by the five state universities in New Mexico has declined 43 percent since 2003. The need for qualified principals in the state is underscored by national research that indicates that school leadership is second only to teaching among the school-related factors that affect learning.

Licensure as a pre K-12 administrator in New Mexico public schools requires:

  • A bachelor's and master's degree,
  • At least 18 hours of graduate credit in educational administration,
  • Completion of an administrative apprenticeship/internship at a college or university or under the supervision of a local superintendent,
  • New Mexico teaching license, and
  • A passing grade on the New Mexico Teacher Assessment.

To address the shortage of principals in New Mexico, the Leadership Institute provides a framework for strengthening the preparation, mentoring, and professional development of school leaders. Principal mentoring is the primary focus of the framework. The Principal Mentor Network provides professional development and resources to help school districts and charter schools develop programs for mentoring new principals and assistant principals.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the mean annual wage of administrators in childcare and preschool settings was $68,450 in May 2008. For elementary and secondary school administrators the mean was $74,410.

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