Administrator Certification
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How do I BECOME CERTIFIED in Washington?

Qualified applicants for an administrator certificate can anticipate two levels of certification during their career, in these roles: Principal, Program Administrator, and Superintendent. They can also apply for a substitute administrator certificate.


  • Certificate (Principal only): Hold or have held a regular teaching certificate or Initial/Continuing Career and Technical Education (CTE) or Educational Staff Associate (ESA) (school counselor, school psychologist, etc.) certification from Washington or another state, PLUS have three years of successful school-based instructional experience in an educational setting. 
  • Degree: Master's degree
  • Preparation: A state-approved preparation program for the particular administrative role
    Administrator Certificate from another state + 3 years experience in that role

Principal and Program Administrator

Superintendent (only)

Fee Payment: Fees are not refundable. Please ensure you select and submit the correct application as the OSPI $39 fee will not apply toward a future or corrected application and will need to be paid with each application submitted. Refund Policy

Additional Information

   Updated 9/28/2016

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