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NYS Teacher Certification For Early Childhood Educators

General New York State Certificates and Requirements:

  • NYS Certification Requirements effective February 2, 2004

Basic Steps to NYS Teacher Certification for:

  • College students
  • Education majors about to graduate
  • Undergraduates enrolled in a teacher preparation program
  • Undergraduate students considering a career in education
  • Graduate students completing a master’s degree in education

Alternative Programs to NYS Teacher Certification for:

  • Career changers
  • College graduates who have decided to pursue a teaching career
  • Experienced, certified teachers who want to make a switch to the NYC public schools
  • Former NYC DOE certified teachers who want to return to the classroom
  • Experienced teachers who have not yet met NYS teacher certification requirements

New York City Licensing requirement:

A New York City license is necessary when applying for employment in any public school position. After completing NYS teacher certification, apply for a NYC License.

If you live outside New York State log on to the NYS Education Department’s Office of Teaching Initiatives Web site at: www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert or contact the NYS Education Department’s Office of Teaching Initiatives by e-mail: tcert@mail.nysed.gov or by phone: (518) 474-3901.

General New York State Certificates and Requirements

New York State Certification Requirements effective February 2, 2004

The NYS Education Department has put into effect new teaching certificate titles and new requirements. Here you will find an overview of these changes and how they affect both current certificate holders and new applicants.

Initial Certificate
What is it? The Initial Certificate is the entry-level classroom teaching certificate in NYS, and is issued for Early Childhood (birth – 2 nd grade), Childhood Education (grades 1 – 6) and Generalist in Middle Childhood Education (grades 5-9) classroom teaching titles
For how long is it valid? The Initial Certificate is valid for three years and may be extended for one year with 24 semester hours of approved graduate study. The certificate may not be renewed and issuance can be delayed up to two years after program completion. Upon completion of additional professional development, the certificate may be reissued.
What do you need to get one?
  • BA/BA Bachelor’s degree
  • Exams: LAST ; ATS-W; CST (except for Speech and Hearing Disabilities); BEA- Bilingual
  • Completion of the NYS Mandated Training on Child Abuse Identification and Reporting
  • Completion of the NYS Mandated Training on School Violence Prevention and Intervention
Initial Certificate- Student with Disabilities (Birth-Grade 2)
What is it? The Initial Certificate-Student with Disabilities is the entry-level classroom teaching certificate in NYS that prepares persons to work with children with special needs and is issued for Early Childhood (Birth-Grade 2).
For how long is it valid? The Initial Certificate is valid for three years from its effective date. For Professional Certification, the candidate must obtain a master´s degree within three years.
What do you need to get one?
  • Completion of a NYS Registered Program- Student with Disabilities (Birth- Grade 2)
  • Institutional Recommendation- Students with Disabilities (Birth- Grade 2)
  • Exams: LAST ; ATS-W; CST- Student with Disabilities; CST- Multi-subject
  • For an Initial Teaching Certificate- Students with Disabilities through individual evaluation, interstate reciprocity and national board certification are different Read more at the New York State Office of Teaching Initiatives
Professional Certificate
What is it? The Professional certificate is the second-level classroom teaching certificate, and is issued to a holder of an Initial certificate upon completion of the requirements for the Professional Certificate.
For how long is it valid? The Professional certificate remains valid so long as the certificate holder completes 175 hours of professional development every five years.
What do you need to get one?
  • Master’s degree
  • Three years’ teaching experience.
  • Requires one year of mentored teaching experience.
  • No examinations required. (CST required for speech and Language Disabilities
The Professional Certificate-Student with Disabilities (Birth-Grade 2)
What is it? The Professional Certificate-Student with Disabilities (Birth-Grade 2) is the second-level classroom teaching certificate, and is issued to a holder of an Initial Certificate upon completion of the requirements for the Professional Certificate.
For how long is it valid? The Professional Certificate remains valid so long as the certificate holder completes 175 hours of professional development every five years in topics related to early childhood special education
What do you need to get one?
Transitional Certificate
What is it? The Transitional Certificate is a credential issued in specific situations to candidates who have not met the requirements for an Initial Certificate, but who have an employment and mentoring commitment from a public school district. There are four types of Transitional Certificates: Transitional A, for individuals who do not meet the requirements for an Initial Certificate; Transitional B, for those enrolled in an alternative teacher preparation program; Transitional C, for individuals enrolled in an alternative graduate certification program; and Transitional D, for those enrolled in an alternative school district leader certification program at the graduate level.
For how long is it valid? All Transitional Certificates are valid for three years.
What do you need to get one?
  • Must be matriculated student and have completed at least one half of program’s semester hour requirement