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Secondary Education Degrees in New Mexico

High school can be a challenging time for even the best student. Strong, dedicated teachers can make all the difference in a child’s life. Whether you want to teach art, science, English, or another subject, you can use your passion for education to change the path of students’ lives.

Secondary education is reaching new levels of success in New Mexico, as evidenced by the state’s graduation rates. The graduation rate of New Mexico jumped 7% in three years, making this one of the most improved states in the country. Historically, New Mexico has always had below-average graduation rates, due in part to the socioeconomic status of many students. As a teacher, you have the opportunity to reach these students.

New Mexico recently received $5.6 million in grants, indicating the state’s growing commitment to education. This can make it easier for you to get the supplies and tools you need to help students succeed.

Legislators in New Mexico hope to give teachers the freedom to teach in ways that they know to be effective. They are challenging PARCC standardized testing in the state.

Overview of Secondary Education Programs in New Mexico

The state of New Mexico has a variety of education programs available for aspiring secondary teachers. If this is your first post-high school degree, a Bachelor’s degree can give you the skills and background you need to thrive in a secondary setting. You can plan on spending about four years in an undergraduate program. Alternative certification programs can often be completed in less than one year; this option requires a Bachelor’s degree in an academic subject area. Those with a Bachelor’s degree may also opt to complete a Master’s degree program.

Your curriculum should broaden your view of education, help you understand the students you’ll be serving, and give you the classroom skills needed to effectively teach your students. To that end, you may take courses like Integrating Technology with Teaching, Multicultural Education, Extended Education Field Experience, Subject Area Teaching Methods, and Approaches to Instruction in Secondary Education. You may complete a variety of field experiences, starting with a short field experience early in your education and culminating in a full semester of student teaching.

New Mexico organizations and government agencies support student teachers with many financial aid opportunities. The New Mexico Higher Education Department has the Legislative Lottery Scholarship Program, the New Mexico Scholars Program, and several other types of financial aid. Many universities and colleges also offer robust scholarship programs to teaching students.

Working in Secondary Education in New Mexico

After you complete your teaching education, you can contact New Mexico’s Public Education Department to get your teaching license. This involves taking a test in your subject area, taking the PRAXIS-II, and passing a rigorous background check.

The demand for secondary teachers in New Mexico is staggering. By 2022, O*Net expects job openings in this field to increase by 20%. This is over three times the national average (O*Net, 2012). Salaries vary quite a bit between school districts, but the statewide average is $49,200 per year (O*Net, 2013).

Give back to New Mexico with your career—check out our school list below to find secondary education programs in New Mexico.