The alternative principal pathway is intended to allow districts to hire talented candidates who may not have licensed experience in schools and who have an undergraduate degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution of higher education to serve in a role of principal or assistant principal. Districts and candidates together create an individualized learning plan based on the Colorado Principal Quality Standards to ensure the success of their candidates.
Using This Page
This page lists the steps you'll take to obtain an alternative principal authorization valid for three years in Colorado. It also includes links to resources that help you complete each step.
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Pass CBI and FBI background checks
- As part of the background check, you must submit your fingerprints to CBI
- A full-time position as a principal or assistant principal
- The district's individualized learning plan for the alternative principal candidate
- A statement of assurance (SOA) signed by employer, designated agency, and alternative principal candidate
- View the District Approved Alternative Principal Programs
- View the top questions a candidate should ask a designated agency/ alternative principal program
- Assure the district's individualized learning plan (individualized learning plan template) for the alternative principal candidate aligns with the Colorado Principal Quality Standards.
- Download the Statement of Assurance (SOA) form (PDF)
Apply for an alternative principal authorization using the eLicensing system
Please note*: No content assessment is required to obtain an alternative principal authorization. However, there is an exam required upon program completion in order to move from an alternative principal authorization to an initial principal license.