All Georgia Paraprofessionals must hold a valid license issued by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. Georgia educators who hold a valid professional certificate may serve as Paraprofessionals without holding a Paraprofessional license.

An individual must be employed as a Paraprofessional in a Georgia local unit of administration (LUA) in order to qualify for a Paraprofessional license, which is valid for five years. In addition to employment, the applicant must meet one of the following qualifications: If you are interested in obtaining a Paraprofessional license, you must first seek employment with a Georgia school, which will require a criminal record check. Your certification application package will be submitted by your employer.


Requirements for renewal of a Paraprofessional license include the following:

For Paraprofessional Licenses expiring between 2011 and 2017:
  • Employment by a Georgia LUA;
  • No renewal credit (coursework) is required;
  • Pass a criminal record check;
  • Employing school system applies for certificate.
For Paraprofessional Licenses expiring in 2018 or later:
  • Employment by a Georgia LUA;
  • An individual Professional Learning Plan (PLP) or a Professional Learning Goal (PLG) coordinated with a supervisor and employing LUA. (For additional information, please see Rule 505-2-.36 Renewal effective date: July 1, 2017);
  • Pass a criminal background check;
  • Employing school system applies for certificate.
If you have fulfilled the above requirements, your employer may submit your renewal application.

Pathway from Para to Professional

Paraprofessionals considering obtaining teaching certification are in an excellent position given their classroom experience, and program options exist that allow paraprofessionals to maintain their position while working towards becoming a Georgia teacher.

Paraprofessionals holding a bachelor’s degree may complete:
  • A GaTAPP program at a RESA or school district. Note this will require Provisional certification requested by a Georgia employer upon assignment to a teaching position.
Or: If you do not yet hold a bachelor’s degree, Georgia colleges have designed programs with working paraprofessionals in mind by offering flexible online courses. Georgia employers may also arrange placements so that clinical experiences may be completed while maintaining your current position. Georgia’s program providers also recognize that paraprofessionals may require additional support due to the demands of their position, and have met those needs by ensuring paraprofessionals seeking certification have strong mentors. In some cases, program providers are also able to assist paraprofessionals in seeking financial aid opportunities and tuition assistance.

Please contact the following approved program providers for more information:
  • GaTAPP (for those who hold a bachelor’s degree or higher)
  • Augusta University
  • Dalton State College
  • Fort Valley State University
  • Georgia Gwinnett College
  • Georgia State University
  • Gordon State College
  • Mercer University
  • Middle Georgia State University
  • Piedmont University
  • Shorter University
  • Thomas University
  • University of West Georgia
  • Valdosta State University