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How to Become a Substitute Teacher in New York

If you are interested in learning how to become a substitute teacher in New York, the following information will help guide you through the process.

New York Substitute Teacher Requirements

In order to attain your substitute teacher certification in New York, you will need the following:

  • A Bachelor's Degree
  • Fingerprint card and Background check: "Smart Card"
  • Completed Application and Supporting documents
  • A $50 application fee made payable to DHR by U.S. postal money order only.
  • Substitute Teacher Tuberculosis Test Information Form
  • Two (2) Substitute Teacher Reference Forms. (Two references must accompany your application in sealed envelopes).

In order to obtain a substitute license application from the New York Department of Education, you must receive a nomination via a principal’s on-line nomination. When a principal’s on-line nomination is received, a substitute nominee receives emailed information on how to access and complete an online application. If the nominee is New York State certified, the nominee may work only in the nominating school. In order to be eligible to work in other schools, and be called by the Office of SubCentral, the certified candidate must complete a written and oral assessment as well as a short training program. Information regarding this will be provided when the candidate appears for initial processing. If a nominee is not New York State certified, the nominee must successfully complete the Assessment and Training components to be eligible to begin working in the nominating school and any other school district. You may not work as a substitute if you cannot successfully complete assessment and training sessions, even in the nominating school. Candidates successfully completing the assessment and training components will be eligible to work in all schools. For both New York State certified and uncertified teacher nominees, invitations are emailed to be processed for an Occasional Per Diem Certificate (OPDC).  The OPDC must be obtained before the nominee may work. All details are emailed to potential nominees and candidates at various times during the processing. Here is a good resource from New York Department of Education to review if you are interested in becoming a substitute in New York. Though you will receive the substitute teacher application if you are selected as a nominee, here is a link to what the application looks like if you'd like to prepare yourself.

Get Your New York Fingerprint Smart Card

Applicants must be fingerprinted at:
Division of Human Resources
65 Court Street, Room 102
Brooklyn, NY
Please bring a driver’s license, social security card (or applicable INS documents) and the $115 processing fee, made payable to NYC/DOE by money order, personal check or credit card (MC/Visa/Discover). Upon approval, an identification card ("Smart Card") and instructions for use will be issued and sent to your home address. Once your fingerprints are cleared and a substitute (per diem) certificate has been issued, you may accept teaching assignments prior to receiving your Smart Card.

Obtain Official College Transcripts

You'll need your original college transcripts showing you have a bachelor's degree in order to receive your substitute certificate. Submit your official transcript with your substitute teacher application.

Complete Your Application for Certification

Please note that you will need to receive a nomination from a principal in order to receive an application from the State of New York. Find a school or district you wish to work for and establish a repoire with them and find out what additional trainings and classes must be taken in order to receive and application from the state.

Submit Your Application

Follow all instructions provided to you by New York State Department of Education. Complete and submit a substitute teacher application, along with the $50 application fee made payable to DHR by U.S. postal money order only, official transcripts and supporting documents. When completed submit your application to:
Office of Substitute Employment
65 Court Street, Room 403
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Letters of Recommendation

Though you will have submitted two Teacher Reference Forms, it may be a good idea to ask professional references for a letter of recommendation. It's probably a good idea to get 2-3 letters of recommendation, so you have them in the event that you need them.

Substitute Teacher Pay in New York

According to the New York Department of Education, the daily pay rate for substitute teachers in New York is $129.61 per day. Rates for substitute teaching may vary by district as well as length of assignment.

Substitute Teacher Jobs in New York

In order to obtain a substitute teaching job in New York, you need to be apart of an automated hiring system once you have been certified. Contact the school and district you wish to work for to ge the run down. You can find a complete listing of New York schools districts here.

Substitute Teacher Resources

New York State Education Department
Office of Teaching Initiatives, Room 5N-EB
89 Washington Avenue
Albany NY 12234
(518) 474-3901

Engage NY - a collaborative platform for educators in New York to access and share teaching resources.

Many subs go on to become a teacher. The New York State Education Department offers a step-by-step guide, showing you how to become a teacher in New York from start to finish. If you are interested in how to become a substitute teacher in another state, just click on one of these neighboring states below.


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