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Upgrading from Initial Certificate to Career Certificate

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The classification, Initial Professional Certificate (IPC) or Initial Career Education Certificate (ICEC), is valid for four (4) years from the date of issuance. Any additional areas(s) of certification issued during the valid dates of this classification will fall under the same classification regardless of the certificate effective date. Therefore, all areas of certification under the IPC classification will have the same expiration date.

During the four (4) years that you hold this classification, you need to complete the following requirements before you can upgrade to a Career Continuous Professional Certificate (CCPC) or Continuous Career Education Certificate (CCEC), both valid for 99 years:

1. Complete four (4) years of Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) approved teaching experience.

Approved teaching experience includes at least half-time, contracted employment in Missouri’s public schools or Missouri's accredited nonpublic schools. Experience will be accepted when earned in nonpublic schools accredited by AdvancEd, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, National Federation of Nonpublic School State Accrediting Association, Independent Schools Association of the Central States, National Lutheran School Accreditation, or Missouri Accreditation of Programs for Children and Youth.

Substitute teaching and serving as a teacher’s aide or assistant cannot be counted toward teaching experience.

2. Participate in a district-provided mentoring program for two (2) years. Your school will assign an appropriate teacher to be your mentor;

3. Successfully complete thirty (30) contact hours of professional development for an IPC upgrade; successfully complete ninety (90) contact hours of professional development for an ICEC upgrade.  This may include college credits (1 semester hour equals 15 contact hours of professional development);

4. Participate in a beginning teacher assistance program offered by a Missouri college or university, Regional Professional Development Center (RPDC), or professional teacher organization such as MNEA or MSTA; and

5. Successfully participate in your employing school's annual Performance Based Teacher Evaluation process.

6.  Develop and implement a professional development plan that is on file with the district.


The Educator Certification System located within DESE Web Applications provides users with access to each of the following:

  • Apply for a certificate
  • Print out a certificate
  • View a certificate or pending application
  • View Praxis scores
  • Check fingerprint/background status

Please Note:  If you have not logged in to your certification account in over 12 months, then you will need to register for a new userid and password in order to restore your access.  The directions to complete this process are located in the Educator Certification System Help Guide.