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State certification changes in response to the coronavirus

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In response to the coronavirus crisis, the New York State Education Department has amended several regulations that govern certification. The UFT fought for these amendments so public school educators are not penalized by the interruptions caused by the pandemic.

These amendments may be applicable to you if you:

  • Hold a certificate that expires in August 2020
  • Have applied or will apply for a certificate or a certificate extension before Sept. 1, 2020
  • Are a special education teacher in grades 7-12 filing for a Statement of Continued Eligibility (SOCE).

Deadline extensions

  • If you hold an Initial Certificate, an Initial Reissuance, a Provisional Certificate, or a Provisional Renewal that expires on Aug. 31, 2020, the expiration date has automatically been extended to Jan. 31, 2021, to provide you additional time to complete the requirements for the next level certificate.
  • If you hold a Teaching Assistant Level I certificate, Level I Renewal, Level II certificate, Pre-Professional certificate, or Pre-Professional Renewal that expires on Aug. 31, 2020, the expiration date has automatically been extended to Jan. 31, 2021, to provide you additional time to complete the requirements for the next level certificate.
  • If you hold a Conditional Initial Certificate that expires on Aug. 31, 2020, the expiration date has automatically been extended to Aug. 31, 2021.
  • If you are a special education teacher in grades 7-12 applying for a Statement of Continued Eligibility (SOCE), the deadline has automatically been extended to June 30, 2021.

Emergency COVID-19 Certificate

If you are a candidate for a certificate or a certificate extension and you have completed all the requirements except state certification exams, you may be eligible for the Emergency COVID-19 certificate.

This certificate is valid for one year, during which you must take and pass the missing exam.

You should apply for the COVID-19 certificate using TEACH Online Services by Sept. 1, 2021.

You must submit two applications on TEACH: one for the certificate or extension you are seeking and one for the Emergency COVID-19 certificate.

The COVID-19 certificate will be issued if you meet all the requirements for it. Once you take and pass the missing exam, the certificate or extension you applied for will be issued.

Read NYSUT's fact sheet about the COVID-19 certificate and other certification changes »

Read more about emergency certification regulations from the Board of Regents »

Other changes

The New York State Education Department will now accept:

  • Electronic transcripts
  • Virtual or online workshops to fulfill Dignity for All Students (DASA) requirements

The UFT is offering remote DASA courses that will fulfill this requirement for teachers and paraprofessionals.

If you have questions about certification requirements, please contact the UFT at 212-331-6311.

Related Topics: Certification