General Information

All students participating in courses that involve observation or teaching in NYC public schools must be fingerprinted and cleared with a background check. Current education courses that require fingerprinting include:

  • EDUC BC 3025 Inclusive Approaches to K-12 Literacy: Theory and Practice
  • EDUC BC 3050 Science in the City I
  • EDUC BC 3051 Seminar in Urban Education
  • EDUC BC 3052 Math and the City
  • EDUC BC 3055 Arts & Humanities in the City
  • EDUC BC 3058 Science in the City II: Preparing Future Scientists Now
  • EDUC BC 3063 Elementary Student Teaching in Urban Schools
  • EDUC BC 3065 Secondary Student Teaching in Urban Schools

All students participating in the Education Program will need to be fingerprinted for a minimum of two courses listed above. Students only need to get fingerprinted once.

Background checks can take anywhere from a few days to 12 weeks to clear, so we strongly advise students to get fingerprinted the semester prior to taking their first class with on-site component. Fingerprint clearance in other states will NOT be considered by the New York City Department of Education or New York State Education Department.

Students who do not get clearance may not enter NYC public schools as a participant of a Barnard Education class. 

For Students with a U.S. Social Security Number

Students with a U.S. Social Security Number (SSN) who have not been fingerprinted for New York State or the New York City Department of Education may be fingerprinted by following the instructions below:

  1. Submit a PETS form to the Barnard Education Program Office in Milbank 335-336. Be prepared to show your Social Security Card for verification. Your PETS forms should never be emailed, since it contains your SSN.
  2. Once you receive confirmation that you are in the Personnel Eligibility Tracking System (PETS) via email from the Applicant Gateway, create an account and complete all online forms required.
  3. When all forms are completed, you must go to the HR Connect Walk-In Center at 65 Court Street in Brooklyn for fingerprinting. Take your government issued ID, college ID, and payment of $135. Acceptable forms of payment include:
  • Money orders (payable to NYCDOE/DHR).
  • Personal checks (payable to NYCDOE/DHR).
  • Credit card or debit card with a logo.

NOTE: Applicants for Teacher Certification will need to transfer their fingerprints to NYSED by completing an OSPRA 104 form.

For International Students without a Social Security Number

International Students without a Social Security Number (SSN) must be fingerprinted through the New York City Department of Education. If you are an international student with a social security number, you are eligible to be registered through the regular PETS process (follow the procedure above).

  1. Make an appointment with the Office of Personnel Investigations by sending an email to or call 718-935-2665 (Ask for Wanda Wentworth regarding clearance as an international student teacher).
  2. Go to 65 Court Street in Brooklyn for your appointment. You must bring in the following four items:
  • Passport
  • Student Visa
  • Proof of enrollment in an education program (upon request, the Education Program will provide a letter)
  • College ID card