Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should base licensure advancement on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
New Mexico requires some evidence of teacher effectiveness in licensing and advancement policies.
New Mexico has a three-tiered licensure system. To advance from a Level I Teaching license to a Level II Teaching license, teachers are required to complete three years' teaching experience, fulfill the mentoring requirement and submit either a Professional Development Dossier (PDD) or National Board of Professional Teaching Standards certification. The PDD includes evidence divided into five strands, which include "evidence of teacher effectiveness" and "evidence of student learning." Specific examples of acceptable evidence are included for each strand. To advance, teachers must meet or exceed the standards in all five strands.
The state also offers a Level III-A license, which requires an advanced degree. Teachers, however, are not required to advance past the Level II certification. New Mexico requires teachers to demonstrate effectiveness as a factor in the renewal of same-level license. Each year, all teachers must demonstrate how they meet the competencies and indicators for their licensure level through an individual Professional Development Plan and Annual Evaluation.
Require evidence of effectiveness for licensure decisions.
New Mexico commendably requires evidence of teacher effectiveness and evidence of student learning for licensure advancement and renewal. However, it is not clear if this evidence must be in the form of objective measures of student achievement to be a factor in determining whether teachers earn advanced licenses.
End requirement tying teacher advancement to master's degrees.
New Mexico should remove its mandate that teachers obtain a master's degree for license advancement. Research is conclusive and emphatic that master's degrees do not have any significant correlation to classroom performance. Rather, advancement should be based on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
New Mexico recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.