New York State Teacher Certification

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It is not as simple as it appears to become a teacher without a teaching degree in New York City, but the rewards can be quite rewarding. A bachelors degree from an accredited institution, completion of a state-approved teacher preparation program, and passing the required New York state teaching exam are all required steps toward becoming a certified teacher in the state. The state of New York requires that all child safety workshops be completed. If you want to teach in New York City, but have not yet obtained a teaching degree, dont worry there are still teaching jobs available. In New York City, after completing a masters degree in teaching , you can still become a teacher. To have an impact in the classroom, you must put in a lot of effort.

School Violence Prevention Training

All students seeking teaching certification must complete a minimum of two clock hours of instruction regarding school violence prevention training. This degree and certification requirement may be met by taking designated workshops on school violence prevention training at SUNY Cortland. This requirement is mandated as part of the NYS Save Legislation.

The Child Abuse Identification and School Violence Prevention and Intervention workshops must be completed prior to graduation. Workshop dates may be accessed at or on the Web.

Initial New York Teaching Certification

According to data provided by the U.S. Department of Labors Bureau of Labor Statistics , New York is the second-highest paying state in the nation for elementary school teachers. The BLS report showed them earning an average annual salary of $67,940, about $13,000 more than the national average.

New Yorks middle school teachers are the highest paid of any middle school teachers in the country, earning an average of $70,670 each year, which is about $16,000 more than the national average for this category.

Secondary school teachers in New York are also the top earners in the nation in their grade-level classification, averaging $70,400 per year, which is about $15,000 more than the national average. Find schools offering teaching certification programs in New York.

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Union Hails End Of Test But Questions Remain

Critics have long worried that the exam shut out candidates of color from the teaching workforce, which faces a shortage. In 2017, New York officials reported that Black test takers were nearly twice as likely to fail the edTPA compared to their white or Hispanic peers. State officials have declined to share more recent test data.

The states teacher union celebrated the change, which has advocated against the test since New York first introduced the exam in 2014. Jolene DiBrango, the unions executive vice president, said the union has long heard complaints about the exam as overly burdensome and led some candidates to quit teacher preparation programs.

This is a critical time to ax the exam as the state faces a teacher shortage, DiBrango said. Union figures show that enrollment in state teaching programs has decreased by more than half since 2009.

We have a great deal of respect and trust in our teacher prep programs across New York state, DiBrango said. We have seen in this state that one-size-fits-all doesnt really fit anyone.

But Dan Goldhaber, a researcher who helped study the effects of the edTPA in Washington state, noted that allowing teacher prep programs to create their own assessments will result in a patchwork of different requirements across the state. So its unclear, he said, that such a policy change will result in better qualified teachers.

New York Teacher Education Requirements

New York State Teacher Certification Examinations

The minimum education requirement to earn New York teacher certification is a bachelors degree. Candidates should also complete an approved teacher preparation program, also known as an NYS Registered Program. However, candidates who attended teacher preparation programs out-of-state may be eligible for an educators certificate if the program completed is deemed comparable to an approved program in New York. Such a program may be completed as part of the candidates bachelors degree or as a post-graduate certificate or masters program.

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New York Teacher Outlook Salary And Jobs

There were an estimated 2.7 million public school students enrolled in New York States 4,798 public schools during the 2016-2017 academic year.3 This gave New York an overall student-to-teacher ratio of 13:1 based on an estimated 209,151 public school teachers during the same time period.3

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that there will be 6,180 average annual job openings for elementary school teachers, 3,190 average annual job openings for middle school teachers, and 5,160 average annual job openings for secondary school teachers in New York from 2016 to 2026.2 In New York, elementary school teachers earn an average annual salary of $83,010, middle school teachers earn an average annual salary of $83,490, and secondary school teachers earn an average annual salary of $85,300, excluding special education.4 The New York State United Teachers federation provides further information on standards, employment opportunities, and education news of interest in the state.

  • Special Education, Pre-K-12
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Obtain Your Initial Certification

Once youve earned your initial teaching certificate, professional certification is the next step. But reaching this milestone requires a return to the classroom this time as a graduate student.

You have five years to earn your masters degree after qualifying for your initial certificate.

Professional certification will also require you to have at least three years teaching experience in your certification area and one year of mentored teaching. Once these qualifications are met, youre ready to apply to NYSED for professional certification.

Mentored teaching

New initial certificate holders must receive mentoring from an experienced teacher in their first year, to help them improve their teaching skills and transition into their first professional public school teaching experience. A mentors primary role is to provide the new teacher with guidance and support. Mentoring activities may include planning, observation, advisement and skills assessment.

Mentoring programs are locally designed and can vary greatly between schools and in teaching contexts.

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Criteria For Admission To The Teacher Education Program

Specific criteria exist for admission to each teacher education program. Minimum undergraduate cumulative grade point average for admission into undergraduate-level teacher education programs is 2.5 on a 4.0 scale however, some programs require a higher undergraduate grade point average. The department or catalog should be consulted for details. In addition, all applicants for teacher education programs are required to file an Application to the Teacher Education program.

How Do I Become A Substitute Teacher In New York

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The NYSED does not issue certificates specifically for substitute teachers however,certified teachers in New York and pending certification candidates can work in any district and subject for up to 40 days as a substitute teacher. After 40 days, these substitute teachers must be certified or seeking certification in the teaching area in which they are employed.

Some districts employ substitute teachers with just a high school diploma who are not certified or seeking certification for a maximum of 40 days. There may be exceptions to these time limits in high-need districts.

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How Do I Maintain Teaching Certification In New York

Initial teaching certification in New York is valid for five years. Teachers must earn a master’s degree within five years of initial certification and accumulate three full years of classroom teaching experience and one year of mentored teaching to qualify for a professional certificate. If they do not meet these requirements within five years, they can apply for a one-time reissuance of their initial certification.

Teachers can maintain active and valid professional certification by completing 100 hours of Continuing Teacher and Leader Education requirements during each five-year renewal period. These continuing education courses must be given by approved CTLE sponsors. Maintaining “active” certification status requires ongoing teaching employment, while “valid” status indicates a teacher meets all requirements for teaching certification in New York.

What Are The Nys Certification Tests

The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations⢠address New York Education Law and Commissioner’s Regulations, which require prospective New York State educators to pass designated tests as a requirement for receiving state certification.

The NYSTCE are criterion-referenced, objective-based tests designed to measure a candidate’s knowledge and skills in relation to an established standard rather than in relation to the performance of other candidates. The explicit purpose of these tests is to help identify for certification those candidates who have demonstrated the appropriate level of knowledge and skills that are important for performing the responsibilities of an educator in New York State public schools.

Test questions were developed using textbooks, New York State learning standards and curriculum guides, teacher education curricula, and certification standards. The tests were developed in consultation with committees of New York State teachers, teacher educators, and other content and assessment specialists.

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Complete Student Teaching Requirement

An approved teacher preparation program will help you meet the Initial Certificate student teaching requirements, which include both:

  • Field observation totaling at least 100 hours, or 150 hours for dual certification programs, in the subject area and grade level range of your expected certificate and
  • At least 2 college-supervised student-teaching experiences of at least 20 school days each in the subject area and grade level range of your expected certificate

Complete A New York State


After you complete your bachelors degree and determine who and where you would like to teach, its time to complete an approved New York state teacher preparation program. This prepares you to become an effective teacher and fulfills some of the state requirements, such as fieldwork, student teaching experience, and necessary workshops. It also puts you on a path to getting certified. After successfully completing a teacher preparation program, you are eligible to receive an institutional recommendation from the university for your New York initial teaching certification. Find out if a program is approved in New York state.

The state-approved Master of Science in Teaching in Childhood Education program at Fordham University can be completed online or on campus and prepares you for an initial teaching certificate. Fordham University also offers additional on-campus M.S.T. programs that range from early childhood education to secondary education.

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Multiple Nystce Activities Slated For 2022

The New York State Education Department is seeking educators to participate for the following NYSTCE activities in 2022:

  • Item Review for the new School Counselor Content Specialty Test
  • Standard Setting for the revised Business and Marketing Content Specialty Test

At this time, the NYSED is looking for New York State educators who hold permanent or professional certification in New York State, educators with expertise in the teaching in these fields, school building or school district leaders who oversee these programs, and New York State educator preparation faculty who are preparing educators in these fields.

The NYSED invites all educator and educator stake holders to nominate highly qualified educators at . Please invite your nominees to complete our online application, located at . Participants in the conference will receive an honorarium and, if needed, reimbursement for travel expenses and lodging.

All NYSTCE exams are developed in accordance with national industry and professional standards for educational testing. NYSTCE assessments are used to measure examinees knowledge, skills, and abilities and to determine certification eligibility required in New York State.

Transition Into Teaching For Career Changers

If youre a career changer interested in teaching, New York state offers several alternative pathways that combine educational coursework and professional mentoring. Accelerated programs can help get you working in a paid teaching position as you earn your certification requirements. While in these programs, youll work under a Transitional Certificate thats tied to the school where you work.

If you have a bachelors degree and want to teach in the subject area in which you majored, you can qualify for a 3-year Transitional B Certificate to lead to an Initial Certificate. This certificate lets you work as a teacher in your subject area of expertise while you complete your NYSED requirements.

If you have a masters degree and want to teach in the subject area in which you majored, you can qualify for a 3-year Transitional C Certificate to lead to a Professional Certificate. This authorizes you to work in a paid teaching position in the subject area of your degree while meeting certification requirements. Its unique in that it leads directly to a Professional Certificate without a prior Initial Certificate.

If you want to teach career-and-technical classes for grades 7-12, but dont meet the Initial Certificate requirements, you can apply for a 3-year Transitional A Certificate to lead to an Initial Certificate. Youll also need at least an associates degree and 2 years of related occupational experience.

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Criminal History Background Check

As part of the initial teacher certification process in New York, fingerprinting and a criminal history background check will be performed. You must complete the , the , and fingerprint cards that will be sent to the FBI. Detailed instructions on the process may be found here.

After you have completed the fingerprint cards at your local law enforcement agency, mail them along with the proper fees to Fingerprint Processing, NYS Education Department, PO Box 7352, Albany, NY 12224. Your fingerprints will be processed through the Division of Criminal Justice Services and the Federal Bureau of Investigation . You will not be certified as a New York teacher until all background checks and fingerprint processing have come back clear.

Can You Teach Without Certification In Ny

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There is no state law in New York that requires teachers to have certification in order to teach in the state. However, most schools in the state do require their teachers to be certified. There are a few alternative certification programs available in New York, but they are not required by the state.

It is a fairly simple process for an individual to become a certified teacher in New York. In New York, like in most other states, new teachers must hold a bachelors degree. Prospective teachers must also take part in an approved teacher preparation program in addition to completing the teacher preparation program. The OTI can help you learn more about the New York teacher certification renewal process. A bachelors degree is the bare minimum of education to become a New York teacher. Furthermore, a teacher preparation program must be completed. Additional tests, such as the Liberal Arts and Sciences Test or the Communication and Quantitative Skills Test , may be required.

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Earn Your Professional Certification

Holders of initial teaching certificates are expected to progress to the professional teaching certificate, within the stated five year period, by completing the requirements for professional certification:

  • Successful completion of an appropriate master’s degree
  • Three years of teaching experience
  • One year of teaching with a mentor
  • Completion of the 6-hour DASA training workshop

We have more resources on New York State Teacher Certification available online at

Find The Teacher Preparation Program For You

Choosing the right teacher preparation program can set you up for a more straightforward teaching certificate process and can lead to a successful teaching career. Teacher preparation programs are specifically designed to prepare you for your individual teaching goals, so it is important to consider what kind of program aligns with your values and lifestyle.

You should choose a program that both challenges you and prepares you to teach the population of students and subject matter you are interested in. For example, what you learn in special education, secondary education, or teaching English to speakers of other languages teacher preparation programs can lead to very different teaching careers.

Fordham University offers online and on-campus Master of Science in Teaching program options. The online M.S.T. program prepares students to teach grades 1 through 6 and features two tracks: Childhood Education and Childhood Special Education. The on-campus program offerings range from early childhood education to secondary education. If you are interested in teaching secondary education, you will also have to determine the subject you want to teach.

Certificate requirements vary from state to state. If you are looking to teach in a state other than New York, you should first research the requirements in the state in which you reside or intend to practice.

1 Accessed March 26, 2018.

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Pass Nystce Teacher Certification Exams

The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations program creates all the exams for New York state certification. Test results are then sent to the New York State Education Department.

To earn an Initial Certificate in New York, you must pass:

edTPA: This is a certification-specific teacher performance assessment that examines your level of preparedness as a teacher.

Educating All Students Test : This exam checks your level of proficiency in teaching diverse student populations, English language learners, and students with disabilities. It also assesses your skills in handling teacher responsibilities and school-home relationships.

Content Specialty Tests : The CST you take to earn your Initial Certificate will depend on the certification youre seeking. A typical CST includes multiple-choice questions and a written assignment.

New York State Teacher Certification Exam Requirements

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Scroll down for required exams by major.

The NYSED requires that candidates applying for NYS Initial Certification complete the exams listed below, please see details on the NYS Teacher Certification Examinations .

When registering for exams on the NYSTCE site, the NYCDOE Program selection question is not applicable. Click Next without making a selection.

  • Educating All Students Test
  • Content Specialty Test

For details, please see NYS Exams Fast Facts below.

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