May 26, 2022

StrategisChhr

Skillful Business Crafters

New Mexican Student teachers battle major financial barriers

A big focus in our legislature has been retaining current teachers, but there are also efforts to attract more aspiring teachers into the industry. Celeste Levy found her passion when she was just 6 years old. “Since the first grade, I’ve always wanted to work with kids with disabilities. My parents always thought I’d grow out of it. Nope,” Levy said. Now she’s a student-teacher at Desert Ridge Middle School, studying at UNM. Levy says paying off student loans on a teacher’s salary is daunting.”I’m going to do four years of college, then the two-year master’s degree program, and I’m still going to only make, you know, less than an electrician,” Levy said. Whitney Holland knows that struggle all too well. She’s the president of the American Federation of Teachers in New Mexico, and she was once a teacher herself. She says the problem isn’t just cyclical but snowballing. “We’re seeing a problem that’s been a problem for decades just get worse and worse,” Holland said. Levy is just one of six student teachers in her program.Levy said, “that is only six teachers out of like, the 300 positions that are open throughout APS.” Both Holland and Levy believe new legislation is the best way to change the trend and bring more students into their passion. Holland said, “If we have things in place that support new teachers, that’s the first step.” “The people that I’ve met that are going into the field are really passionate, and they want to see their students succeed. To get teachers in or more teachers into the field, then we need to make it more affordable,” Levy said.House Bill 13 in the legislature would offer student teachers $35,000 to complete their teaching residency programs and become full-time teachers.

A big focus in our legislature has been retaining current teachers, but there are also efforts to attract more aspiring teachers into the industry. Celeste Levy found her passion when she was just 6 years old.

“Since the first grade, I’ve always wanted to work with kids with disabilities. My parents always thought I’d grow out of it. Nope,” Levy said.

Now she’s a student-teacher at Desert Ridge Middle School, studying at UNM. Levy says paying off student loans on a teacher’s salary is daunting.

“I’m going to do four years of college, then the two-year master’s degree program, and I’m still going to only make, you know, less than an electrician,” Levy said.

Whitney Holland knows that struggle all too well. She’s the president of the American Federation of Teachers in New Mexico, and she was once a teacher herself.

She says the problem isn’t just cyclical but snowballing.

“We’re seeing a problem that’s been a problem for decades just get worse and worse,” Holland said.

Levy is just one of six student teachers in her program.

Levy said, “that is only six teachers out of like, the 300 positions that are open throughout APS.”

Both Holland and Levy believe new legislation is the best way to change the trend and bring more students into their passion.

Holland said, “If we have things in place that support new teachers, that’s the first step.”

“The people that I’ve met that are going into the field are really passionate, and they want to see their students succeed. To get teachers in or more teachers into the field, then we need to make it more affordable,” Levy said.

House Bill 13 in the legislature would offer student teachers $35,000 to complete their teaching residency programs and become full-time teachers.

https://www.koat.com/article/student-teachers-facing-financial-barriers-abq/38991938