A federal court ruled Thursday the city Board of Education's teaching certification exam was discriminatory 16 years after the lawsuit was filed.
The suit was filed by the Center for Constitutional Rights in 1996 and went through several appeals before Thursday's ruling.
The decision forces the state to make sure current and future exams are fair and it will also be subject to independent monitoring.
The court also ruled the city must pay for any potential monetary damages awarded to teachers who fell victim to discrimination.
The court also said teachers would need to file separate action to enforce any damages.
In 2003 another judge hearing the case said there were about 2,000 teachers who could potentially qualify for damages.