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Educational Leadership

edTPA Safety Net Information

Effective April 27, 2022- The edTPA will no longer remain as one of the exam requirements towards the initial certification; therefore, the safety net is no longer required either.

Visit NYSED-Office of Teaching Initiatives information on the edTPA Safety Net

The New York State Education Department (NYSED )- Office of Teaching Initiatives have extended the edTPA/ATS-W exam safety net option from Spring/Summer 2021 to include the Fall 2021, Spring/Summer 2022 semesters. Select candidates/ applicants enrolled in an Educator Preparation Program (EPP) and registered in their student teaching/ internship clinical experience courses during these semesters will be included in the college submission to the New York State Education Dept. as eligible to use the edTPA safety net option after they meet the specific criteria. These eligible candidates, will have the option to pass either the edTPA exam OR the ATS-W exam as part of their initial certification requirements.

Safety Net Requirements

As of news of the state extension, the Dean for the School of Education & the Safety Net Committee will make two submissions only to the NYSED-Office of Teaching Initiatives:

  • one in January 2022 for the Fall 2021 semester
  • the last one in June 2022 for both the Spring/ Summer 2022 semesters.

Students must meet the following criteria to be automatically included in the submission list as eligible for the edTPA/ ATS-W safety net option at the end of each semester:

  1. Students must have a New York State TEACH Online Services account. If not, create one on the NYSED Office of Teaching Initiatives website.
  2. Students must be registered on CUNYfirst in a student teaching course/ internship clinical course during the Fall 2021, or Spring 2022 or Summer 2022 AND complete the course with a minimum final grade of B or higher, as is policy in the Student Teacher Handbook.
    Students should be registered on CUNYfirst in any of the following student teaching/ internship clinical courses during the semester of Spring-2020, Fall 2020, Spring/Summer 2021, Fall 2021 and finally the Spring/Summer 2022:
    ESC 470, 471, 595, 596, 609, 610, 611, 612, 790, 797, 798
    EDC 781, 783, 784, 790, 795
    EDE 783, 784, 795
    EDS 719,720
  3. Any final grade of INC, CR, B- or less in these courses are not acceptable. Any INC grade must be resolved ASAP and a new final grade of B or higher must be posted on CUNYfirst by May 31, 2022 to be included the in the final submission to the state.
  4. Any NYC Teaching Fellow & Collaborative students not registered in any of the above clinical courses can be included in the list submitted to the state, ONLY if they:
    • Are actively enrolled in their final semester completing their ALL program coursework
    • File for graduation no later than the Registrar’s Graduation Audit Office deadline (Check the semester Academic Calendar)
    • Are approved for graduation by the Registrar’s Dept. at the end of the semester

All select students matching the above stated requirements will automatically be included in the submission list to the state at the end of each semester.

Again, the Dean & the Safety Net Committee will review final grades and graduation approvals then extract students that match the above requirements when verified in the CUNYfirst system to submit to the state.

Read state information on the edTPA Safety Net.

Applying for the Safety Net to your state TEACH Online Services Account

After the state receives the list from the college at the end of each semester, they will store this information. They will not apply the safety net option until each specific step below is followed. Applicants must first:

  • Be included in the list from the college at the end of each semester
  • Have a paid application on file for the initial certificate through your TEACH Online Svcs account
  • Must have their college recommendation submitted for their initial certificate in the same area they applied for
  • Pass the ATS-W exam
  • THEN to “Apply the Safety Net” send an email request to the state at Include in the email, your full name as it appears on your TEACH Online account, the last four of your social security #, and date of birth. Request to have the state apply or “activate” the safety on your TEACH Online account.

Until each step above is completed, your TEACH account will indicate that you are missing the edTPA exam because it is one of the actual required exams for the initial certificate. The state will replace it with the ATS-W only after you follow each step above.

Although each step and requirement has been explained in great detail above, it is still important that you carefully read the state information regarding the edTPA safety net directly on their website. Visit the New York State Education Dept. Office of Teaching Initiatives.

After you send your safety net request to the state, you will have to wait for them to apply it to your TEACH account. You can check the status through your TEACH Online account information by following the online guide.

If all your other initial certification requirements are completed (you have graduated, completed any Liberal Arts & Sciences courses, all workshops are completed, you have received your college recommendation, have fingerprints in your TEACH account and have passed all other exams), the state should then approve the issuance of your initial certificate. Keep checking your TEACH Online account information to monitor your certificate’s issuance status and validity.

When to take the ATS-W?

Qualified students can take the ATS-W exam anytime they feel ready to but they must understand the state will not receive their information until the end of the semester, if requirements are matched and completed.

There are two ATS-W exam versions are:

Those in subject areas in grade levels Birth through 6th subject areas, should take the Elementary ATS-W. Those in Middle & High School subject areas in grade levels 5th through 12th, should take the Secondary ATS-W exam. Those in areas that cover all grades: Art, Music, TESOL, Heath can choose either exam.

An ATS-W test preparation guide and study materials are available on the Pearson testing website or just on the direct links above. There are also exam study modules available for all School of Education student’s Blackboard accounts. When logged in on their Home page, click on CUNY Teacher Education under “My Organization.”

The state will honor the use of the safety net option for qualified applicants of passing the ATS-W exam in lieu of the edTPA exam until Sept. 1, 2024. This will be the last day to take & pass the ATS-W exam for qualified applicants.

Applicants who meet the edTPA safety net eligibility requirements, that already took and passed the ATS-W previously, the passing ATS-W score would be acceptable in lieu of the edTPA exam.

Still want to take the edTPA?

If any candidate still wants to submit the edTPA for official scoring, despite the safety net option they must notify their Seminar Instructor. will offer technical support during the open office hours via Zoom. Email for Zoom link.

Student Support Services:

Certification questions:

edTPA, Taskstream, Swivl, Ed Tech questions:

Fieldwork, Student Teaching/ Intern, Fingerprinting questions: