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NMTEACH Frequently Asked Questions

////NMTEACH Frequently Asked Questions
NMTEACH Frequently Asked Questions 2018-01-30T21:18:39+00:00

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What measures make up my summative evaluation?

Effective educators have high standards of professional practice and demonstrate their ability to improve student learning. Thus, the NMTEACH Educator Effectiveness System is based on measures of student academic growth, evidence from classroom and school practice, contributions to colleagues and the school community, student surveys and their own attendance. The final evaluation for any teacher is comprised of a combined score of five individual components: Improved Student Achievement (35%), Classroom Observations (40%), Planning, Preparation and Professionalism (15%), Student Surveys (5%) and Teacher Attendance (5%).

If the teacher does not have available student achievement points the weight of the other measures will change.  Until that time, remaining points from the Improved Student Achievement category will shift to the observation and multiple measures categories as described in the NMTEACH Steps document.

How does a teacher know how he or she is scoring during the process?

Because the NMTEACH Educator Effectiveness System was created to be a system of improvement, conclusions should not be formed about the final score of an individual teacher based on incomplete evaluation data. NMTEACH was intentionally designed to be a year-long process, so educators would have the opportunity to reflect on each part of the evaluation and respond to it accordingly with adjustments in teaching practice when necessary. By looking at each category separately, it provides teachers an opportunity to specifically recognize what they are doing well and seek help for the areas they need to improve. Although not all categories are weighted equally, it is unlikely that any individual category will determine the final evaluation score.

What if a student moves classes?

Teachers are evaluated based on the students in their class at four specific snapshots (40th day, 80th day, 120th day, End of Year). If a student moves in the middle of the year, the first teacher will be evaluated on the student’s progress in the beginning of that year, and the second teacher will be evaluated on the student’s progress in the ending of that year.

How are bilingual educators evaluated?

Because they are responsible for delivering the same content as other teachers, albeit in another language, bilingual educators are evaluated according to the grade and content area they teach. The exception is teachers who are Native Language Certified (teachers with 520 certificates). These 520 teachers are entirely excluded from the NMTEACH Educator Effectiveness plan; though they may still have Professional Development Plans (PDP) based on a district or school decision and/or they may be evaluated according to their pueblo or tribe. Teachers with bilingual endorsement who teach native languages will not be assessed on the native language classes, but will be assessed only on the other classes they teach, if applicable.

How will special education students factor in?

All students deserve to learn. As such, Special Education teachers, whether in a self-contained classroom or inclusion classroom, will be observed and evaluated with the same criteria as non-Special Education teachers.

How can teachers access summative reports from previous years?

A copy of the summative report should be provided to the teacher. Additionally, a signed copy of the summative report should reside in the teacher’s personnel file

Can administrators have a review period before summative reports are released to teachers?

Yes, there will be a review period for superintendents and charter school directors before summative reports are released to teachers.

How can districts access summative reports for teachers that did not work in their district in the year prior?

The NMTEACH Summative Report is  a personnel document and is the property of  the teacher and the employer who issued it. The teacher may request a copy of the report from their previous district and provide it to the current one.

Who are teachers compared to on the graph on page one of the summative report?

The graph represents the median score for all teachers in the state and their respective district.

I didn’t receive a summative report.  What should I do?

Please check with your district or charter school administrator immediately.

Are there different EOCs for elementary schools that are K-6 vs K-8?

No, please refer go to the EOC webpage for more detailed information. Click here for a list of EoCs.

Where can I review EOC Blueprints?

Go to the EOC webpage for more detailed information. Click here to access EOC Blueprints.

If a student took the PARCC in another state and then the next year takes the PARCC in New Mexico, does the score from the previous state count?

No, the data used is only from assessment the student completed in New Mexico.

May I have a copy of my EOC so I can adequately prepare my students?

To maintain test security and integrity, copies of the test are not available in advance. However, blueprints for every EOC housed by PED are available on the EOC webpage. EOC blueprints identify content standards applicable to the EOC assessment and describe the design of the EOC with a focus on content range and patterns of emphasis.  Click here to access EOC Blueprints.

Why can’t teachers choose their own assessments?

To the degree available, student achievement measures must be common, rigorous and linked to standards that are adopted by the state of New Mexico. This will ensure that the measurement of student achievement creates equitable expectations for all students regardless of background characteristics.

Why aren’t there passing scores for all EoCs?

Passing scores were developed for EoCs that count as an Alternate Demonstration of Competence for high school graduation.  In the near future the state will be reporting state wide averages and standard deviations for all EoCs.  Additionally we are exploring the feasibility of establishing empirical based cut scores for all EoCs.

What happens if a student doesn’t have an academic peer group (e.g. no one in the state has the same past performance)?

All students who have a current student achievement and prior achievement scores will have a peer group.

Are academic peer groups for EoCs based on PARCC or EoCs?

Academic peer groups are determined by the most recent previous standarized assessment taken by the student.

If this is the first EoC a student is taking, is a teacher’s Value-Added Score (VAS) for EoCs based on percentage of passing, overall percentage or individual growth?

Value-Added is a growth model ‒ percentage of passing and overall percentage is not part of the calculation. The VAS for an EoC is determined by the average of the student’s Value Added Scores.

If PED has the capacity via STARS data extract, why can’t teachers tied to 3rd grade in a district that has Istation as a mandate (K-3+, Reads to Lead), have Istation added into their student achievement data?

Over the past three evaluation cycles, K- 2 teachers were associated with the DIBELS data and third grade teachers were only associated with PARCC/SBA data. Moving forward we will explore associating third grade teachers with Istation in 2017-18.

If a teacher teaches middle school and gives an EoC, what data (points/cut socre) is used to determine the teacher’s VAS?

The teacher VAS is determined by the average VAS of the students who take the EoC. The students’ VAS comes from prior performance plus current performance on the EoC.

Science growth SBA is offered to 4th, 7th and 11th graders, is three years growth expected? Does the 9th and 10th grade teacher get any credit on their evaluation? 

The expected/predicted growth of all students depends on their most previous performance on standardized tests. Beginning in 2015-16 school year the Value Added Model used for high school science was changed so only 11th grade teachers were associated with their 11th grade students’ science test scores.

Could a student count at two different school districts for one snap shot (i.e. student is in Artesia for part of 80 day and Hobbs for the other part)?  

A student cannot be counted at two different school districts in the same snap shot per current STARS business rules.

How is the academic peer group for 3rd graders created?

The academic peer group for all students is determined by identifying students of the same grade level who scored exactly the same in the previous standardized test ‒ for third graders that would most likely be the 2nd grade Istation scores.

How will Istation growth be calculated?

Istation growth is calculated by using the beginning of year and mid-year assessments as prior achievement to determine a student’s predicted growth.

How are peer groups determined for Kindergarten students?

The academic peer group for all students is determined by identifying students of the same grade level who scored exactly the same in the previous standardized test.  Istation growth is calculated by using the beginning of year and mid-year assessments as prior achievement to determine a student’s predicted growth.

How is VAS calculated for kindergarten?

Istation growth is calculated by using the beginning of year and mid-year assessments as prior achievement to determine a student’s predicted growth.

Should EoCs be given for semester long classes?

Yes, if an EoC is available for the course.

What is the formula that converts VAS to points earned?

Because of the way individual VAS is distributed, the overall VAS is converted into a percentile using the cumulative density function (CDF) of a standard normal distribution. The percentile is then used to weight the possible STAM points to find the STAM points earned.

How is SBA science in 4th grade factored into a teacher’s evaluation?

Student growth on SBA science test is factored into a teachers’ VAS, not student proficiency; this is accomplished by comparing students’ science scores with their academic peers. In this case the academic peer group is identified using 3rd grade reading and math scores.

How is growth calculated for 3rd grade students since it is their first time taking PARCC?

The expected/predicted growth of all students is calculated by determining predicted growth based on previous performance on standardized tests and then comparing the predicted growth to performance on the current assessment.

Is there a way to determine student’s VAS scores at the beginning of the year?

No, a Value Added Score (VAS) is determined by comparing prior achievement to current achievement. Certainly, prior achievement of students should be used in teacher planning.

If a student is new to a district, how are the peer groups determined?

The academic peer group for all students is determined by identifying students of the same grade level who scored exactly the same in the previous standardized test.

If a student completes both English and Spanish Istation which data is used for the summative report?

Both data sets are used to calculate the students’ achievement scores. For more information go to

On the summative report, is there a chart that shows the difference between VAS scores in growth and time? (i.e. what does .25 mean vs. .65 maybe in terms of months of growth?)

Currently we do not provide a legend that translates VAS into months of learning, however we plan to release a translation in the near future.

Will SLA/SBA count on the summative report?

Yes, the SLA/SBA has and will continue to be counted for student achievement on the summative report.

What is the formula for calculating growth?

Student growth for a specific test is equal to the difference between the students’ actual score and their expected score. For additional information on the formula used to calculate expected score please refer to the current NMTEACH Technical Guide.

How are academic peer groups determined for EoCs?

The academic peer group for all students is determined by identifying students of the same grade level who scored exactly the same in the previous standardized test.

Do both regular ed and special ed teachers receive the scores for one particular student?

Yes, both teachers are eligible to receive credit provided the district associates both teachers with the student in a course number that is linked to a student assessment. Up to three teachers can be linked to a student with the correct student/course combination.

Does a student’s academic peer group change from assessment to assessment? (i.e. student A takes EoCs and PARCC are the peer groups different for each assessment?

Yes, academic peer groups are specific to the assessment the student has taken.

What is the minimum number of observations required for a teacher?

One observation is needed to generate a summative report. If no extenuating circumstances exist, districts and charters should adhere to the number of observations identified in their observation plan.

Do districts and charter schools still have flexibility to conduct only one observation for highly effective and exemplary teachers?

Yes, that flexibility is allowed.

How are survey scores determined?

To compute the points earned on the summative evaluation for surveys, NMTEACH calculates the average total score and then divides by the number of possible survey points (50 for students and 40 for parents) to get the final weight.

My students took the survey, but I don’t see a score on my summative report?

At least 10 complete surveys must be submitted in order to create a valid N size to calculate a score. In most instances the N size has not been met.

Is professional development reported as an absence for teacher attendance?

Professional development should not be reported as an absence.

What are considered excused absences for Teacher Attendance?

Absences due to Family and Medical Leave Act, bereavement, jury duty, military leave, religious leave, professional development, or coaching are excused and should not be reported as absences by the District to the PED reporting systems.


Page last updated January 30, 2018