Salary

Salary Step FAQ

Click on a link to jump down the page:

What is a salary step?
What is an equate date?
Who can apply for a salary step?
When should I apply for a salary step?
How do I apply for a salary step?
What type of prior professional experience qualifies for a salary step increase?
How many years of initial credit am I eligible for?
How is my prior work experience verified?
Do I need to apply every year for salary step placement?
What happens after I reach the maximum salary step?
How do I receive longevity? 
How long will it take for my application to be processed?
What if I receive my salary step certificate but don’t receive an increase in pay?
How do I read my salary step certificate?
If I withdraw my resignation or return to the DOE after retiring, how is my salary step affected?
How does a leave of absence without pay affect my salary step?
How is my salary step affected if I fail to meet licensing requirements?
How is my salary step affected if I revert to a prior license?
Who do I contact if I have additional questions about salary steps?


What is a salary step?
A salary step is an incremental increase in salary based on previous qualifying professional experience.

All appointed teachers and school-based staff are assigned a salary step and equate date and will automatically advance to the next salary step twice each year—on the equate date and on March 1.

Non-appointed staff advance to the next salary step after 85 days worked, up to a maximum of step 4A. Non-appointed staff cannot advance beyond step 4A.
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What is an equate date?
Appointed teachers and school-based staff are assigned an equate date when they are placed on a salary step. These staff will automatically advance to the next salary step twice each year for each semester of satisfactory service completed: once on March 1, and the other on their equate date.

Non-appointed teachers are not assigned an equate date but automatically advance to the next salary step after 85 days worked, up to a maximum of step 4A.
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Who can apply for a salary step?
All full-time New York City public school teachers (except day-to-day substitute teachers and paraprofessionals), school secretaries, laboratory specialists, guidance counselors, school psychologists, and school social workers can apply for an increase in salary step.
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When should I apply for a salary step?
Immediately after completing an online application for employment, prospective teachers and school-based staff should access the online salary step application to apply for salary step placement.  The prior work experience a prospective employee reports in his/her online application for employment is automatically fed to the online salary step application; this information is then used as a foundation in creating this application.   It is the responsibility of the prospective employee to access his/her record within the salary step application and verify that the information it received from the online application for employment is accurate.  

You must submit your salary step application no later than two weeks prior to your start date.  If you fail to submit your salary step application by this date, you will be placed on the lowest salary step (step 1A) even if qualified for a higher salary step.  If it is determined that you qualify for additional salary credit once you submit your application, your new salary step will be retroactive to the date of your appointment.
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How do I apply for a salary step?
After you have submitted your online application for employment, access the salary step application here.
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What type of prior professional experience qualifies for a salary step increase?
The NYC Department of Education applies three types of prior experience for salary step increases:

  • Teaching experience performed for the NYC Department of Education
  • Teaching experience performed outside the NYC Department of Education
  • Related non-teaching experience

Prior Teaching Experience Performed for the NYC Department of Education
Appointed teachers with prior DOE experience are eligible to receive salary step credit for satisfactory service in Pre-K–12 day schools or adult education. Service in summer or evening schools is not accepted.

Prior per diem service is creditable only if you worked at least 85 aggregate days (per diem service is only credited in blocks of 85 days). For every block of 85 days worked, one term of credit will be awarded.

Non-appointed teachers cannot receive credit for per diem service.

Prior Teaching Experience Performed Outside the NYC Department of Education
To receive salary step credit, outside teaching experience must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Paid
  • Full time
  • Regular (not per diem or per session)
  • Minimum length of one complete school term (semester)
  • Rated Satisfactory
  • Performed in an accredited day school, in grades K-12
  • Performed after conferral of the bachelor’s degree

Please note:

  • Teachers of common branches, early childhood, homebound, and special education may claim regular Pre-Kindergarten teaching service.
  • Full-time teaching service at an institution of higher learning may be claimed and, if found eligible, will be awarded at a rate of one semester of service for one year of full-time college teaching. (Note: Adjunct and/or part-time college teaching is not accepted.)

Prior Related Non-Teaching Experience
(Includes satisfactory, related experience performed in the military service)

If you are teaching in one of the following license areas, you may qualify for prior allowable related non-teaching experience salary credit:

  • Accounting and Business Practices
  • Attendance Teacher
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Distributive Education
  • Earth Science
  • Home Economics
  • Industrial Arts
  • Library
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Science
  • Shop Subjects/Trades
  • Special Education Licenses (all)
  • Stenography and/or Typewriting
  • Technical Subject

In order to receive salary step credit, the claimed related, non-teaching experience must meet ALL of the following requirements:

  • Full-time 
  • Minimum length of one calendar year
  • In a position that is reasonably related to your Department of Education license area
  • Performed prior to the date of appointment

Teachers of some career and technical education subjects (known as "trade teachers") may be eligible for salary step credit based upon their experience as a practitioner of their trade. One such example of this professional experience is completion of the Success Via Apprenticeship (SVA) program - an internship program offered jointly by the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) and NYC DOE.  If you are a teacher of a career or technical education subject and need additional guidance as to whether or not your prior work experience qualifies you for a salary step increase, please call the Office of Salary Services directly: (718) 935-4000.

Please note: Service as a paraprofessional or as a teacher’s aide is not creditable for salary credit.
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How many years of initial credit am I eligible for?
Appointed teachers are eligible to receive credit for a maximum of seven and a half years of prior qualifying professional experience (up to salary step 8B).

Appointed school secretaries, lab specialists, guidance counselors, school psychologists, and school social workers are eligible to receive credit for a maximum of five years of prior qualifying professional experience (up to salary step 6A).

Non-appointed staff is eligible to receive credit for a maximum of three years of prior qualifying professional experience (salary step 4A).

Salary step credit is awarded as follows:

  • One term of qualifying teaching experience equals one salary step (for example, if you had one term of prior qualifying teaching experience, you would move from salary step 1A to 1B).
  • Each year of qualifying, related non-teaching experience equals two salary steps (for example, if you had one year of prior qualifying related non-teaching experience, you would move from salary step 1A to 2A). Related, non-teaching experience must be a minimum of one year in length to be awarded credit.

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How is my prior work experience verified?
The Division of Human Resources, or its representative, will contact the employers you list in your online employment application and/or your paper-based salary step application to verify all prior experience.

You may contact former employers to alert them that the division will be requesting verification of your work experience. If prior experience cannot be verified, the salary step increase will not be granted or will be revoked.
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Do I need to apply every year for salary step placement?
Once you are assigned a salary step and equate date, you will not need to apply again. You will automatically advance to the next salary step twice each year: once on March 1 and again on your equate date.

Non-appointed staff are not assigned an equate date but automatically advance to the next salary step after 85 days worked, up to a maximum of step 4A.

In some circumstances, school-based staff will need to resubmit an application for salary step placement, including:

  • If your status changes from non-appointed to appointed
  • If you change titles (e.g., teacher to guidance counselor)

Resubmission of the salary step application allows you to request credit for prior work experience that you may not have been entitled to under your previous status/title.
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What happens after I reach the maximum salary step?
After the maximum step is reached (8B for teachers, guidance counselors, school secretaries and laboratory specialists or 7B for school psychologists and social workers), longevity increases are granted for 5, 10, 13, 15, 18, 20, and 22 years of service in NYC public schools.
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How do I receive longevity?

After you have reached the maximum salary step, the Office of Pedagogical Payroll automatically calculates your years of service and modifies your salary.
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How long will it take for my application to be processed?
It takes approximately four to six weeks for your prior work experience to be evaluated. Following this evaluation, you will receive a Certificate of Salary Status via email that states the salary step that has been assigned as well as your equate date. If you are placed on a salary step greater than 1A, your new salary will be reflected in your paycheck in approximately two to four pay cycles.

If you are owed retroactive money (for example, you submitted your salary step application after the due date), it will appear in a paycheck up to three pay cycles after your salary has been adjusted.
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What if I receive my salary step certificate but don’t receive an increase in pay?
If you receive your salary step certificate and don’t receive an increase in pay within four pay periods of your application being received, ask your payroll secretary to contact Pedagogic Payroll for you. Once your certificate has been issued, you must work with the Pedagogic Payroll Office to resolve any payroll issues. The Pedagogic Payroll Office can be reached at (718) 935-3542.
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How do I read my salary step certificate?

Click to see our guide for understanding your Certificate of Salary Status.
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If I withdraw my resignation or return to the DOE after retiring, how is my salary step affected?

If you are a DOE employee and wish to withdraw your resignation or you are a former DOE employee who wishes to return to service after retiring, you are entitled to return to the salary step you were on prior to your departure.

You must complete a paper-based application entitled Commencement of Service Upon Withdrawal of Resignation or Restoration From Retirement and submit it to the Office of Salary Services to be placed on the correct salary step and be assigned an equate date.

If you received additional related work experience during your absence from the DOE (work experience must be full time and could either be from an outside entity or from inside the DOE, such as per diem or F-status), and you were on salary step 8A or below when you separated, you will need to submit a new salary step application along with your Commencement of Service Upon Withdrawal of Resignation or Restoration From Retirement application. The information you provide in the salary step application will allow the Office of Salary Services to consider your most recent professional experience in the assignment of a new salary step. If you did not gain additional work experience during your separation, there is no need to resubmit a salary step application; you will be placed on the salary step that was in effect prior to your departure.
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How does a leave of absence without pay affect my salary step?
If you take a leave of absence without pay, your equate date is removed. When you return to work upon completion of the leave, the Office of Salary Services will re-assign an equate date for you so that you will advance correctly to subsequent salary steps. A separate salary step application does not need to be submitted.

If you worked for the DOE on a per diem basis for 85 days or more during your leave, this service will be taken into account and applied toward a potential increase in your salary step. Regardless of whether or not an increase is granted, you will receive a new salary certificate via email.

Please note: Salary step credit is not given for non-DOE experience earned during a leave of absence without pay.
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How is my salary step affected if I fail to meet licensing requirements?
If you fail to meet your licensing requirements within the prescribed time, your license will be revoked, and your salary step will be reverted to and frozen at 4A. Likewise, if your salary step is below 4A at the time you lost your license, your salary step will also be frozen. Salary steps will remain frozen until your license has been re-established.

After the license is restored, the Office of Salary Services will revert your salary step to the level it would have been, had your license not been revoked.
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How is my salary step affected if I revert to a prior license?

If you took another position within the DOE that did not use the original license for which you were hired and then returned to your original licensed position at a later date, field staff will notify the Office of Salary Services of your reversion.

If your original license did not expire while you were in your non-teacher/line position, you will be assigned the salary step and equate date you were on before you left your teaching/line position once the Office of Salary Services is notified of your reversion.

If your original license expired while you were in your non-teacher/line position, the Office of Salary Services will reassign your salary step and equate date to what it was before you left your teaching/line position upon notification that your license has been restored.

In both cases, you will receive a new salary certificate via email after your salary step and equate date have been reassigned.
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Who do I contact if I have additional questions about salary steps?
For additional questions about salary steps, please contact HR Connect at (718) 935-4000.
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