GENAC Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about the GENAC Alternative Teacher Licensure Program

What is GENAC? The "Growing Educators for Native American Communities" (GENAC) program is a unique partnership between the Native American Community Academy (NACA) and Central New Mexico Community College (CNM).

GENAC is a post baccalaureate alternative teacher education program, grounded in the belief that Native Children deserve an education that is rooted in their culture, delivered in accordance with indigenous epistemology, and preparatory for leadership in Native communities in the 21st Century.

The purpose of GENAC is to recruit and prepare Native and non-Native individuals to work effectively as educators in New Mexico's Native American communities. participants will integrate knowledge of indigenous perspectives with developing skills in relationship-building with students and their communities, critically reflective practice, curriculum, and teaching methodologies.

What grades will I be able to teach with an elementary license? With an elementary license you are eligible to teach grades K-8. In grades K-5, teachers teach all subject areas. In the middle school grades (6-8), teachers teach 1 (or sometimes more) content area classes (ie. English or math). However, teachers must be "highly qualified" to teach core subject areas in middle school on an elementary license.

How do I know if I am "highly qualified?" To be "highly qualified" teachers must pass a middle-level NMTA content test in the content area, or have 24 credits in the content area, with 12 of those credits being upper division level on a college transcript.

What grades will I be able to teach with a secondary license? With a secondary license you are eligible to teach grades 7-12. You are required to have at least one content area endorsement with the secondary license. The content area is the subject you will teach (ie. English, art, math).

Can I add more endorsements to my license? Yes. With your first endorsement, you must have 30 undergraduate credits in the subject area on a college transcript (typically, this is the candidates undergraduate major) or 12 graduate credits in the subject area, and you must pass an NMTA content area test in the same subject area.

You can add additional endorsements, with either 24 credits in the content area, 12 of which must be upper division, or by taking the NMTA content area test.

What is the supervised field experience/student teaching course like? The Supervised Field Experience (SFE) course is to be taken at a specific point in the GENAC Program.
Teacher Candidates must spend a minimum of 160 hours in a classroom working with students: individually, in small groups, and leading whole class lessons.

This does require flexibility in scheduling or a leave of absence from a day-time job.

How long does it take to complete this Program? The GENAC Program has a very structured sequence of coursework that will take students 3 – 4 semesters to complete.

How much does the GENAC Program cost?

  • CNM's tuition $48.25 per credit hour, plus a $3.00 per credit hour technology fee.
  • There is a registration fee of $40.00 every semester.
  • Every class requires textbooks which can average $150 per class.
  • Elementary Education (21 credit hours): tuition alone is $1,076.25
  • Secondary Education (18 credit hours): tuition alone is $922.50

Are there other associated costs? Yes, other associate fees include Fingerprint/Background Check process fees, NMTA exam fees and NMPED Licensure Fees.

Is Financial Aid available to students in the Program? Yes. Students may be eligible for the Pell grant and are eligible to borrow at the 5th year undergraduate level. Please refer to the Financial Aid information page for details about eligibility.

Can I get a job before I finish the GENAC Alternative Teacher Licensure Certificate Program? Yes. Upon acceptance into our program, students may apply for an Internship License, which allows students to apply for and accept teaching positions while they complete the ATL Program.

  • Once you receive an intern license you have 3 years to complete all licensure requirements (including all required ATL Program coursework and NMTA testing). If you are hired to teach on an intern license, you will be the lead teacher of a class and will receive standard entry-level pay.
    • Upon completion of our program and successful completion of all required NMTA exams, students may apply for a Level 1 (five-year) provisional teaching license.
    • Upon successful completion of a minimum one-year mentorship and other PED requirements students will eligible to apply for a Level 2 (nine-year) professional teaching license. Students may hold a Level 1 license for a minimum of three years and maximum of five years at which point they will be required to apply for a Level 2 license or forfeit the Level 1 license.
    • To advance to a Level 3 license, you must obtain a Master's degree.

Does the coursework in this Program transfer to a Master's in Education? No, the CNM Alternative Teacher Licensure Program coursework is numbered at the "200" level and thus will not be accepted as graduate credit at any institution other than Eastern New Mexico University towards their Master of Education, Pedagogy & Learning.

Can I transfer a New Mexico Teaching License to another state? Yes, a New Mexico Teaching License has reciprocity in 42 states. If you know you will be relocating to another state it is important to discuss transfer requirements with that state's Department of Education.