The PED is asking for feedback on its new teacher advancement system - Albuquerque Journal

The PED is asking for feedback on its new teacher advancement system

Copyright © 2022 Albuquerque Journal

Educators have been abuzz with talk about their new advancement system.

So the state Public Education Department’s putting it to the test early next year with a public hearing that will propose several rule changes to actually implement the system, known as micro-credentials, into the department’s rulebook.

The Jan. 3 meeting on the rules, interim Director of Educator Quality and Ethics Layla Dehaiman said, will be used to gather public feedback about the new system.

“Given the excitement and the amount of people that signed up … we really saw it as time to put it into effect through a rule change,” she said in an interview.

The current dossier system will still be in place through the 2023-24 school year, meaning it’s still an option to educators, and Dehaiman said no substantial changes have been proposed to the things educators are evaluated on for each licensure level.

Each micro-credential covers an essential skill for educators, like developing their classroom environments, and is made up of five online courses. Fees for the micro-credentials are broken up into $60 payments – altogether $20 cheaper than the cost for the dossier system – and the current full series of five micro-credentials takes about a year and three months to complete.

Santa Fe Community College professor of teacher education sj Miller, who’s also a facilitator in the micro-credential currently in progress, said the system is detailed, organized and helps educators develop teaching skills for the digital age. Miller’s first name is not capitalized.

“These teachers are getting a top notch experience,” Miller said, adding that the system expands on “understanding students’ funds of knowledge – their cultural, linguistic, economic, social backgrounds – at the same time as it’s providing current research.”

Emily Merritt, a kindergarten teacher in Rio Rancho currently taking a micro-credential, added that it provides more classroom-specific information than a college program would, plus a chance to get feedback from experienced teachers about whether certain techniques are working out.

She added that many fellow teachers have told her that the new system is a step forward from the daunting dossier, which spooked many of them away from trying to advance.

“It’s more teacher-helpful, it’s actually giving us techniques that we can try,” she said. “I know everyone was a little scared to be the first cohort to see if it’ll stick around or to see if it’s going to pass through, but as of right now, I really enjoy it. I think it’s really helpful.”

Originally, about 356 people signed up for the first round of micro-credentials, and were set to begin classes in October, but Dehaiman said that number has since dropped to about 300.

Educators have complained that the current dossier system is a burdensome, often frustrating exercise they often didn’t get feedback on until months after they failed.

The micro-credentials, Dehaiman has said, addresses those concerns by breaking up the process into more manageable and affordable chunks. She’s said it also provides quicker feedback than the dossier system.

The meeting on the proposed rule changes is scheduled for 1 to 3 p.m. at 300 Don Gaspar in Santa Fe. Written feedback can be mailed to that address, or emailed to rule.feedback@ped.nm.gov”>href=”http://rule.fee”>rule.feedback@ped.nm.gov.

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