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Educator Certification

This page includes information regarding certification applications, salary lane change requests, and tuition reimbursement. It is the responsibility of the certificate holder to review current certification requirements and to complete renewal requirements prior to the expiration date of their certificate.

Dr. Laura Moore gives a thumbs up while she reads out loud to her students at Waverly Elementary School

The HCPSS Employee Credentialing Office works directly with the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) to provide certification services for all HCPSS certificated employees. Once employed under contract, HCPSS will handle all certification requests. If you are not a contracted HCPSS educator or if you are a HCPSS supporting services employee or substitute teacher, you must contact MSDE directly for certification services at 410 767-0412,, or online at

Per MSDE, licensure of professional education personnel by the State is established to offer assurance that:

  1. Professional public educational staff possess the minimum essential knowledge and skills needed to achieve outcomes for public education declared by the State Board of Education;
  2. Academically successful, multiply talented, and ethnically and experientially diverse individuals are being sought and retained by local school system and licensed education personnel maintain competent practice through career long engagement with their content area, research, best practices, and expert opinion.

Teachers, Specialists, and Administrators in Maryland public schools are subject to certification requirements and must hold an appropriate certificate under COMAR 13A12.02, 13A12.03, or 13A.12.04 as appropriate.


All Maryland educators are required to register in MSDE’s The Educator Application and Certification Hub (TEACH) and apply for certification services as appropriate. Once registered, all educators will have access to their online Dashboard where they may submit applications for certification services (renewal, adding endorsement, etc.), make payments, download their certificate, and update contact information.

Transcript Requirements

Official transcripts are required as part of the certification application process. Unofficial transcripts submitted during the hiring process cannot be used during the certificate application process in TEACH. An application for certification services (initial certificate, renewal, add endorsement) will not be approved if official transcripts are not on file.

Transcripts may be submitted in one of the following ways:

  • Ordered from Parchment, which will be sent directly to TEACH
  • Electronically sent directly from an alternative e-transcript service to (or your assigned Employee Credentialing Specialist)
  • Sent by mail/pony in original, unopened/sealed envelope received by you from the institution of higher education to your assigned Employee Credentialing Specialist.

Note: If electing to send transcripts electronically, they must be issued directly from the college/university to (or your assigned Employee Credentialing Specialist) to be considered official. Electronic copies forwarded by an individual as an attachment are considered as an unofficial transcript and will not be accepted. It is the responsibility of the certificate holder to submit an online application through TEACH in a timely manner and/or prior to the expiration date of their current certificate.

Praxis Testing Information

Individuals applying for initial certification in any content area may be required to take Praxis assessments to obtain their professional certificate. To determine if you are required to take Praxis assessments to obtain your professional certificate, please visit MSDE’s general testing information website. For a listing of all current Praxis subject and pedagogy assessments, please visit MSDE’s Praxis assessment website.


Effective September 1, 2019: Individuals applying for initial certification in the areas of Early Childhood Education grade pre-K-3, Elementary Education grades 1-6, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) pre-K-12, and Generic Special Education (all grades), that are required to take Maryland assessments for professional certification must present a passing score for the Praxis Teaching Reading: Elementary (TRE #5205).

Beginning July 1, 2025: The edTPA or PPAT will be required for applicants. Until this time, applicants may submit either the edTPA, PPAT, or the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching assessment to fulfill the pedagogy assessment requirement. Currently, there is no specific score required for either the edTPA or PPAT; however, if an applicant submits the Principals of Learning and Teaching, the score indicated is required. Visit MSDE’s website for more information.

Adding Endorsements

Individuals holding a professional certificate may add additional content areas (endorsements) to their certificate. There are two ways to add additional endorsement areas to an active professional certificate:

  • Submit qualifying scores on the appropriate content specific Praxis assessment
  • Submit official transcripts with 30 semester hours of content credit in the desired certification area.

Additional endorsements cannot be added to conditional certificates. An application to add an endorsement to your existing professional certificate must be submitted in TEACH.

Note: Individuals must hold a professional certificate with an existing content area to be eligible to add additional content area endorsements to their certificate. Other endorsements such as Administration, Pupil Personnel Worker, Reading Teacher and Reading Specialist require specific graduate-level course work. Guidance Counselor and School Psychologist certifications require a master’s degree in the area.

Accessing Certifications

Certificated HCPSS employees can view their personal certification information in Workday. (Employee login required)

Additionally, individuals holding an MSDE educator certificate can view their personal certification information and download a copy of their current certificate in TEACH.