Educator Resources

Memos to the Field



Executive Director of the Office of Teaching Initiatives

Date: April 2004
To: Chief School Officers of Public School Districts
Deans of Teacher Education Programs
School Personnel Administrators
New York City Department of Education
From: Joseph B. Porter
Subject: Recent amendments to teacher certification provisions

At its March 2004 meeting, the Board of Regents adopted a series of amendments to Part 80 of the Commissioner's Regulations that clarify and supplement the current certification requirements for classroom teachers.

Military Service Time Extension

Grants time extensions to candidates whose teacher preparation study was interrupted by active military service between 9/11/01 and 2/1/04 to complete their programs and other certification requirements for the provisional and permanent teaching certificates. This time extension will be equal to the period of the candidate's active military service and will begin on September 1 following the conclusion of the military service.

Conditional Licensure Opportunity for Out-of-State Certified Teachers

·Renews the opportunity for certified out-of-state teachers to qualify for a "conditional" first level teaching certificate (previous authority for this provision expired on 2/1/04). Under this option, a candidate may receive a conditional initial certificate provided he or she holds a valid teaching certificate in the same title as the NYS certificate being sought, from a state participating in the interstate agreement for certification reciprocity. Such nonrenewable certificates will be valid for two years. Candidates must pass the NYSTCE examinations at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the conditional certificate in order to progress to the regular initial certificate.

Certification Opportunity for Licensed Speech/Language Pathologists

Renews the pathway for licensed speech-language pathologists to attain an initial or professional certificate as a teacher of Speech and Language Disabilities (All Grades). Under this option, a licensed speech-language pathologist may receive an initial certificate upon submission of an application to the Office of Teaching. Candidates will progress to the professional certificate after completing three years experience teaching speech and hearing handicapped students in a pre K - 12 school setting or its equivalent, passing the NYSTCE Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST) and completing specified professional development or coursework.

Continued Eligibility Option for Theatre Teachers

Establishes a statement of continuing eligibility (SOCE) option for theater teachers as of September 1. 2004. This option is available to any teacher holding a permanent classroom teaching certificate who has taught theater in the public schools for 3 out of the 5 years prior to February 2, 2004. Holders of this SOCE may continue to teach theater in any school district, without possessing the Theater teaching certificate (All Grades), which was first established within the new teacher certification structure, effective 2/2/04.

Certification Opportunities for Non-Citizens

Permits non-citizens with permanent resident status to obtain the full range of NYS teaching certificates. Non-citizens who have not applied for US citizenship and who are not permanent residents will be able to obtain time limited certificates (ie. modified temporary licenses and initial certificates) if they possess skills and competencies not readily available among teachers holding citizenship or demonstrate other good cause, as determined by the Department, for obtaining the certificate.

Last Updated: June 4, 2018