Benefits and Incentives

New Mexico is a great place to live! The sun shines year round, the landscape is beautiful, and there are lots of opportunities to get involved and get outdoors. In many cities, the cost of living is also relatively inexpensive - making your teaching salary stretch further. New Mexico also are offers several incentives to help pay for your teaching training.

New Mexico Teaching Salaries

UPDATE: The State of New Mexico recently raised its minimum salaries for teachers to $50,000/yr for Tier 1, $60,000 for Tier 2, and $70,000 for Tier 3. These new minimum salaries will take affect beginning in the 2022-23 school year. Stay tuned for updated videos and resources!

New Mexico uses a 3-Tiered system for licensure and teacher salaries. Teachers earn money depending  primarily on their level of licensure and may earn more for additional coursework, degrees, or  responsibilities. In 2022, minimum salaries were set to as $50,000 for Level 1 teachers, $60,000 for Level 2 teachers, and $70,000 for Level 3 teachers. Check out the resources below to learn more. 

State and Federal Funding Available to Educators

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

If you are changing careers and require training in order to do so, you may be able to access needs-based WIOA Funding for training-related costs.

Grow Your Own Teachers Act

If you are a New Mexico resident who has been accepted into an Approved Licensure Program and you demonstrate financial need via FAFSA, you may qualify for this funding. Funds are dispersed through teacher prep programs.

Teacher Preparation Affordability Scholarship Program

If you are attending an eligible teacher preparation program and demonstrate financial need, you may qualify for up to $6000 per year toward your tuition. Funds are dispersed through teacher prep programs.

Teacher Loan-For-Service Program

The purpose is to proactively address New Mexicos teacher shortage by providing students with the financial resources to complete or enhance their post-secondary teacher preparation education. Acceptance into a teacher prep program at a New Mexico public college or university is required and awardees must be enrolled at least half time.

Federal TEACH grant

The TEACH Grant Program provides grants of up to $4,000 a year to students who are completing or plan to complete coursework needed to begin a career in teaching. A Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant is different from other federal student grants because it requires you agree to complete a teaching service obligation as a condition for receiving the grant, and if you don't complete the service obligation, the TEACH Grant will be converted to a loan that you must repay, with interest.

National Board Certification Scholarships and Stipends

The State of New Mexico offers limited scholarships for qualified teachers to pursue their National Board Certification. Teachers who are National Board certified can obtain Level 3 Certification in New Mexico and receive an annual stipend, above and beyond their salary, of approximately $6500.

Loan Forgiveness Available to Educators

Teacher Loan Repayment Program - The purpose is to increase the number of teachers in designated high-need teacher positions in public schools through an educational loan repayment program. The program provides for repayment of the principal and reasonable interest accrued on loans obtained from the federal government for teacher education purposes.

Financial Aid / Incentive ProgramType of ProgramWho is EligibleAmountHow to Apply
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity ActReimbursement for Training and Transition Costs to Change CareersThose who demonstrate financial need and who enroll in a participating teacher training programVariesWork with your teacher training program and/or regional New Mexico Workforce Connection Center
Grow Your Own Teachers Financial AidScholarship to pay for teacher training tuitionCurrent NM Educational Assistants who have been in position at least 2 years and who demonstrate financial need (via FAFSA)Up to $6000 / year for up to 5 yearsThrough an approved university training program
Teacher Preparation Affordability ScholarshipScholarship to pay for teacher training tuitionNM Resident, enrolled at least half-time in a teacher prep program, not currently a licensed educator and demonstrates financial need as determined by the institution. (via FAFSA)Up to $6000 / year for up to 5 yearsThrough an approved university training program
NM Teacher Loan-For-Service ProgramScholarship to pay for teacher training tuitionNM residents enrolled in traditional or alternative teacher training programs who declare the intent to teach in a designated shortage area in NM and who demonstrate financial needUp to $4000 / year for up to 5 yearsApplication on the NM Higher Ed Department Website – Application Window is May 15 – July 1
Teacher Loan Repayment ProgramLoan Repayment NM Resident current teachers who fill high-needs positions, have been teaching at least 3 years and who are willing to sign a contract to teach 2 additional yearsAmount variesApplication available on the Higher Education Department Website – Application Window June 1 – Aug 1
TEACH GrantFederal GrantBe enrolled as an undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, or graduate student at a participating school, in an eligible program.  Meet certain academic requirements. Receive TEACH Grant counseling. Sign a TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve or Repay.Up to $4000 / yearApply through an approved university training program
See’s Guide to Scholarships for Future Teachers for additional, state- and program-specific scholarships.

Know about a grant, scholarship or loan repayment program for teachers that isn’t listed here?