Professional

If you have never held a Clear Renewable or professional Georgia certificate and do not currently hold a valid Non-Renewable Georgia certificate, you must have at least 3 years of experience within the last 5 years to qualify for an initial Professional certificate in a teaching field.
  • If you hold an expired Clear Renewable or Professional certificate, please click here for information about renewing your certificate.
  • If you hold a valid Non-Renewable Georgia certificate, you must fulfill the requirements outlined in the correspondence issued with your certificate in order to qualify for a Professional certificate. Please note, these requirements must be completed before the expiration of your Non-Renewable certificate. If not, you may be subject to new requirements.
  • If you are seeking initial certification in a teaching field but do not have at least 3 years of experience in the last five years, please click here to learn about the Induction certificate.
There are two types of Professional certificates: Standard and Performance-Based. The requirements for each are outlined below. The Performance-Based Professional certificate is issued to those teachers who have been evaluated for at least 3 years on the statewide Teacher Keys Effectiveness System (TKES) and for leaders who have completed a Georgia performance-based Educational Leadership certification program.

Requirements for a Performance-Based Professional certificate in a teaching field include:

  • At least 3 years of successful experience within the last 5 years. All 3 years must have been earned in a Georgia school with a summative performance rating of “Proficient” or “Exemplary” while being evaluated on the TAPS component of TKES, the statewide evaluation system. Educator experience in Georgia public school systems is transmitted electronically to the GaPSC. All other educator experience should be documented on the Experience Verification Form (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader).

Requirements for a Performance-Based Professional Educational Leadership
certificate include:

  • Completion of a GaPSC-approved Performance-Based Educational Leadership program at the specialist or doctoral degree level. Please include official transcripts reflecting all course work for your program with your application package. Program completion must be verified electronically by Georgia institutions.
  • A passing score on the GACE Educational Leadership content assessment. GACE scores are transmitted electronically to the GaPSC.
  • A passing score on the Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL). This is required if you enrolled in a GaPSC-approved Tier II program on or after 7/1/2017.
  • A passing score on the Ethics for Educational Leadership – Program Exit assessment if it was not previously passed for Tier I certification.
  • Employment within a Georgia local unit of administration (LUA). Employment should be verified on the Employer Assurance Form (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader), which may be submitted electronically by your employer. If you are not employed at the time of application but you meet all other requirements for a Professional certificate, you will be issued a Certificate of Eligibility that may be converted to a Professional certificate upon employment.
Please note: While Georgia Educational Leadership now consists of a tiered structure, completion of previously approved Building and System level programs will result in performance-based Educational Leadership – Tier II certification. Those enrolled in these previously approved programs are not required to pass the Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL) for certification.
  • Performance-Based Building or System Level Educational Leadership certificates were converted to Performance-Based Tier II Educational Leadership with the implementation of the tiered structure in January 2016.

Standard Professional Certificate

This certificate is issued in all service fields, as well as to leaders who have not completed a performance-based program (those who hold/held field 704 or complete a Tier I program) and to teachers who do not have the TKES evaluations required for the Performance-Based Professional certificate.

Requirements for a Standard Professional certificate in a teaching field include:

  • At least 3 years of experience within the last 5 years. Educator experience in Georgia public school systems is transmitted electronically to the GaPSC. All other educator experience should be documented on the Experience Verification Form (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader);
  • Employment within a Georgia local unit of administration (LUA). Employment should be verified on the Employer Assurance Form (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader), which may be submitted electronically by your employer. If you are not employed at the time of application but you meet all other requirements for a Professional certificate, you will be issued a Certificate of Eligibility that may be converted to a Professional certificate upon employment.
Requirements for a Standard Professional certificate in service fields are different for each field. Please click on the links below to view the Certification Rule for each service field. The requirements for a Standard Professional certificate are outlined in each rule (All the files below requires Adobe Reader).

The Standard Professional Educational Leadership certificate is issued to:

  • Those who complete a GaPSC-approved Tier I Educational Leadership program;
  • Qualifying out-of-state educators applying for initial Georgia certification in Educational Leadership based on reciprocity;
  • Georgia educators who completed a GaPSC-approved Educational Leadership certification program prior to September 30, 2009.
Validity: Professional Georgia educator certificates are valid for 5 years.

For renewal requirements, please click here.

How to Apply

Once you meet the qualifications for a Professional certificate, please submit the following documents in addition to any documentation of specific requirements indicated above.
  • Application for Certification (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader);
  • Verification of Lawful Presence Documentation (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader):
    • This affidavit must be completed and notarized. Please choose only one option on the affidavit;
    • You must attach a copy of an acceptable identification document to this form. Please see the instructions provided with the form for a list of acceptable documents;
    • If you are a U.S. citizen and you have previously submitted this documentation to the GaPSC, you do not need to submit it again. If you are not a U.S. citizen and you have submitted this documentation to the GaPSC within 180 days, you do not need to submit it again at this time.
  • Official transcripts from all colleges/universities you have attended:
    • These may not be faxed or uploaded. You may mail original official transcripts or have your college or university send them to mail@gapsc.com in a secure electronic format.
  • Employer Assurance Form (.pdf) (requires Adobe Reader):
    • This may be submitted electronically by your employer.