New Mexico Teacher Certification

April 3, 2016
How to Become a Teacher in New

diverse group of people from different occupationsAs we enter the 21st Century, the world of education is undergoing significant changes. In the next few years, many teachers, possibly over 2 million nation-wide, who began teaching in the late 1960s and early 1970s will be retiring. It is anticipated that the number of teachers graduating from traditional university teacher education programs will be far short of the number needed to replace retiring teachers.

Where will we find highly-qualified teachers to fill these important positions?

Many people with a bachelor’s, master’s, law or doctoral degree have an interest in teaching, but lack the necessary teaching credentials. These people may have years of experience in others fields which could have significant relevance in the classroom. In addition to having experience in a particular field, these people may have been parents, scout leaders, or sports coaches and realized that working with youth is more rewarding than the non-teaching career they had chosen. However, returning to college for a four-year teaching degree may not be an option. In fact, it may not be an option to be unemployed for any period of time in order to pursue a career in education.

In addition to mid-career changers, some recent college graduates discover that they are natural teachers. Soon after leaving college they are considering a path into teaching.

Alternative Licensure may be the right choice for those wishing to “fast-track” into teaching

Consider the options for earning Alternative Licensure and chose the one which suits you best.

  • through a post-baccalaureate alternative licensure program (face to face or online)
  • a portfolio (Online Portfolio for Alternative Licensure - OPAL).

In either case, one may apply for an Internship License and begin teaching while completing the requirements for Alternative Licensure.

An individual may complete either the program or portfolio route to alternative licensure independently; however, support is available for qualifying participants in alternative licensure programs.

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