How to Become an Elementary School Teacher in Florida

To teach in Florida, you need a college or university degree, a teaching certificate and appropriate immigration or citizenship status to work in the United States. The steps you need to take to become a teacher in Florida depend on your existing education and qualifications, such as whether you have graduated from college (university) or already have certified teaching experience from outside of Florida. Try these steps to become an elementary school teacher in Florida.


  1. Image titled Work in Drug Rehab Step 7
    Obtain a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university if you need one. If possible, consider majoring in elementary education or a related subject to prepare you for teaching elementary school students.
    • Spend at least 30 semester hours learning necessary educational content for Florida elementary school teachers. Examples are learning the methods and content for teaching writing, science and math to elementary school students.
    • Make sure your non-U.S. college or university degree is the equivalent of a bachelor's degree from an accredited U.S. college (university). Get a report from a credential evaluation agency approved by Florida's Bureau of Educator Certification or an accredited 4-year U.S. college or university to determine this.
  2. Image titled Forward Mail Step 8
    Pass a Subject Area Examination in elementary education if in the U.S. If you want to teach a specific subject to elementary school students, such as Art or a foreign language, you may also take a different Subject Area Examination for that subject. Passing the exam qualifies you for a Temporary Certificate for that subject.
  3. Image titled Become an Elementary School Teacher in Florida Step 3
    Fill out a CG-10 application form. The form can be obtained online, by mail, or picked up in person from a Florida school district office. Pay the application fee by credit card, personal or cashier's check or money order.
    • Email or call Florida's Department of Education to request a paper copy of the CG-10 application form if you have neither a U.S. Social Security number nor a U.S. state/territory mailing address.
  4. Image titled Cope in a College Hostel Step 12
    Pay the processing fee for each subject you choose to teach. Send a personal check, cashier's check or money order for payment.
  5. Image titled Benefit Your Company Financially by Leasing a Fleet Step 6
    Provide official transcripts showing all your degrees and U.S. or Canadian college (university) credits. If you attended more than 1 college (university), get official transcripts from each college (university).
    • Have a copy of your non-U.S. college or university's diploma verified to be true by a notary public or a certification officer in 1 of Florida's school district offices. Each page of your diploma should say "I HEREBY CERTIFY THAT THIS IS A TRUE AND CORRECT COPY OF THE ORIGINAL DOCUMENT" and be signed and sealed by a notary or signed by the certification officer.
    • Include the original copy of your credential evaluation report if necessary. The report should state the equivalency of a U.S. degree and have descriptive course titles and semester-hour units for your schoolwork.
  6. Image titled Become a Commercial Real Estate Appraiser Step 2
    Provide copies of valid teaching certificate(s) received from any other U.S. states or territories if applicable. Check whether your state accepts Florida's Professional Educator's Certificate if applicable. If it does, then Florida will reciprocate and accept your state's certificate as well.
  7. Image titled Become a Nursing Home Administrator in Ohio Step 5
    Mail your application package to Florida's Bureau of Educator Certification in the state's Department of Education.
  8. Image titled Forward Mail Step 2
    Wait for the Bureau to determine your eligibility and issue your Official Statement of Status of Eligibility. The statement should show you are eligible for a Temporary or Professional Certificate in your chosen subject.
  9. Image titled Become a Commercial Real Estate Appraiser Step 3
    Obtain the necessary immigration status to work in Florida if not a U.S. citizen. Work with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to establish your status.
  10. Image titled Become a Dell Reseller Step 11
    Teach at a public or nonpublic school in Florida. A public school can mean a charter school sponsored by its own school district. A nonpublic school can include Virtual Schools that are Internet-based, statewide public schools.
    • Discuss any immigration or visa matters you have with prospective employers. Your employer must send the appropriate documentation for your immigration status to the Bureau of Educator Certification.
    • The school you teach at should offer its teachers a state-approved program to demonstrate professional competence in education, which is used to get a Professional Certificate in Florida.
    • Have your fingerprints processed. If you are already teaching at a school, your employer can help with this. Pay the processing fee.
    • The employment and fingerprint processing should be done before your eligibility statement's 3-year expiration date or else you must reapply and be re-evaluated for another Official Statement.
  11. Image titled Apply for a Marriage License in New York Step 1
    Pass any and all required Florida Teacher Certification Tests (FTCT). The tests you need to take will be on your Official Statement of Status of Eligibility.
    • You need a valid U.S. Social Security number for the Bureau of Educator Certification to accept your test scores. The Social Security number should be the same on your educator certification file.
  12. Image titled Become a Car Dealer in the UK Step 5
    Complete the requirements listed on your Official Statement before the date your Temporary Certificate expires.
  13. Image titled Become a Bookkeeper at Home Step 6
    Take an alternative certification program offered by your Florida school district. The programs are suitable for new teachers, recent college (university) graduates or those changing careers who need professional teaching preparation and experience.
    • Alternative certification programs must be initially and continually approved by the state and uses your performance in the course and your first year of teaching as factors in its approval process.
    • All community colleges and 4 state universities in Florida have Educator Preparation Institutes (EPI) that give these programs.
  14. Image titled Become a Dell Reseller Step 10
    Receive a Florida Professional Educator's Certificate.


  • Fingerprint processing will be done by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
  • A transcript for a non-U.S. college (university) may be used in place of a diploma if it has your degree's title and the specific date you received the degree on it.


  • You must have a valid United States Social Security number to apply online for Florida Educator Certification.
  • You need to write your Social Security number or Florida Department of Education number on each transcript and each teaching certificate page you send in. Also include either number on your checks for application fees.

Things You'll Need

  • Bachelor's degree
  • Subject Area Examination
  • CG-10 application
  • U.S. Social Security number
  • Payment of processing fee
  • Official college (university) transcripts
  • Verified copy of diploma from institution outside of U.S. or Canada
  • Notary public or certification officer
  • Translation of non-English documents
  • Credential evaluation report
  • Official Statement of Eligibility for a certificate
  • Immigrant or citizenship status to work in the U.S.
  • Employment in Florida public or nonpublic school
  • Fingerprint processing
  • Florida Teacher Certification Tests
  • Temporary Certificate
  • Alternative certification program
  • Professional Educator's Certificate

Article Info

Categories: Teacher Resources | Pages with broken file links