HOUSE BILL 127
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
Susan K. Herrera and Brian G. Baca and Willie D. Madrid and Debra M. Sariñana and Christine Trujillo
FOR THE LEGISLATIVE EDUCATION STUDY COMMITTEE
RELATING TO SCHOOL PERSONNEL; INCREASING THE MINIMUM SALARY FOR EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANTS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 22-10A-17.1 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2004, Chapter 30, Section 1, as amended) is amended to read:
"22-10A-17.1. EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANTS--LICENSING FRAMEWORK--QUALIFICATIONS--MINIMUM SALARIES.--
A. All persons who perform services as educational assistants in public schools or in those special state-supported schools within state agencies shall hold valid educational assistant licensure issued by the department. Educational assistants shall be assigned, and serve as assistants, to school staff licensed by the department. While there may be brief periods when educational assistants are alone with and in control of a classroom of students, their primary use shall be to work alongside or under the direct supervision of licensed staff.
B. The department shall, through appropriate rules, institute a licensure system for educational assistants. The highest level of license shall ensure that educational assistants who hold that level of licensure meet the standard for paraprofessionals established in federal statute and regulation for employment in a Title 1 program.
C. A licensed educational assistant who is a resident of New Mexico, who is authorized to work in the United States, who has been employed by a public school in a position that works directly with students for at least two years and is in good standing with the school district and who is enrolled in or accepted by an undergraduate teacher preparation program at a regionally accredited public post-secondary educational institution in New Mexico shall be granted professional leave by that public school to attend a teacher preparation program in New Mexico; provided that the public school may require that the professional leave minimizes disruption to the school day and may require an educational assistant to make up hours in exchange for hours missed from the school day.
D. The minimum annual salary for licensed educational assistants shall be [twelve thousand dollars ($12,000) effective in the 2004-2005 school year] twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) effective in the 2023-2024 school year.
E. The minimum salaries specified in Subsection D of this section may be adjusted in accordance with appropriations for that purpose in each school year as established by the secretary.
F. School districts shall initiate the implementation of a career salary framework that supports the licensure system in department rules in fiscal year 2005.
G. As used in this section, "teacher preparation program" means a program that has been formally approved as meeting the requirements of the department and that leads to level one teacher licensure, including a program in a two-year post-secondary educational institution that meets the requirements for a teacher education transfer module established pursuant to Subsection C of Section 21-1B-4 NMSA 1978."
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