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New York State Certification

Applicants must have valid New York State teacher certification to begin teaching at a New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) school.

Students enrolled in a New York State teacher preparation program must show that they are in good standing and on track to receive a certificate before they begin teaching when they submit an application to the NYCDOE. Interested candidates who are not yet certified can enroll in one of many programs approved by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to earn certification.

Certificates are granted through the NYSED, which issues the following types of certificates (individuals with valid Provisional or Permanent New York State certificates are also eligible to apply). For more detailed information, including the requirements for each subject and grade level, visit the NYSED certification requirements database. For information on certification exams, visit the NYSED certification testing page.

Traditional Certificates

Initial Certificate
The Initial Certificate is the entry-level teaching certificate for anyone who has completed a New York State teacher preparation program, or equivalent coursework and experience. The Initial Certificate is valid for five years.

Professional Certificate
The Professional Certificate is an advanced certificate for teachers who have a master’s degree and three years of teaching experience, and complete 175 hours of professional development every five years.

Transitional Certificates

These certificates are for candidates who are completing alternate routes to the classroom and are teaching while earning their initial certificate.

Transitional A Certificate
Individuals who have substantial industry experience but do not qualify for an Initial Certificate can become a Career and Technical Education (CTE) teacher with a Transitional A Certificate.

Transitional B Certificate
Participants enrolled in alternative certification programs, such as the New York City Teaching Fellows or Teach For America, receive Transitional B Certificates, which allows them to teach while they complete certification coursework.

Other Certificates

Conditional Initial Certificate (Based on Interstate Reciprocity)
This certificate is for applicants who are certified or licensed in another state or country.

Internship Certificate
The Internship Certificate is a two-year certificate for those who have completed at least 50 percent of an approved graduate program leading to an Initial Certificate. Before they begin working, candidates must meet the following criteria:

  • Be officially recommended by their university or college,
  • Pass any certification exams required by their university or college,
  • Have a job offer from a principal,
  • Complete the “Dignity for All Students” training, and
  • Get fingerprint clearance
If you do not yet have a teaching certificate, you can earn certification through one of several approved programs. Learn More