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Alternative Pathway - Alternative Teacher License

Preparing to Apply

Am I in the Right Place?

This checklist is for applicants who are seeking an alternative teaching license in order to participate in an alternative teacher preparation program.

Not in the right place? Review the other checklists.

Before you begin,  review "Alternative Teacher Candidates: What you Need to Know" to ensure you understand the alternative licensure pathway and process.

Even if you have not yet secured a teaching position and/or enrolled in a program, you still may submit an application to determine whether you meet the requirements to participate in a Colorado-approved program as an alternative teacher. (Within the application, you will be able to skip over the employment/program portion of the application.)

  • Once confirmed, your application will reflect an "alternative license pending employment/program" status -- which can be verified by you, district HR representatives and alternative program officials.
  • You then will have one calendar year to secure a teaching position, enroll in a program and upload a completed statement of assurance (see below) in order to obtain an alternative license.

Plan Ahead

  • You will need electronic copies of all documentation.
  • Allow ample time to request any third-party transcripts or other documentation.

Application Fee:


Alternative Teacher License Expires:

1, 2 or 3 years from date of issue, depending on qualifications, endorsement area and length of program



  • Submit fingerprints to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
    • If you have submitted fingerprints for CDE credentialing in the past, but allowed all credentials to lapse, you must submit a new set of fingerprints to CBI.
  • Confirm you have a valid form of government-issued identification. 


You will need to include the following documentation in your application:

  • A copy of an official transcript for every college/university attended.
    • At a minimum, a copy of an official degree-conferred transcript from a regionally accredited college or university that demonstrates both a bachelor's or higher degree and completion of an approved teacher preparation program. 
    • Unofficial transcripts are never accepted. Please do not include them in your application.
    • Transcripts from institutions outside the US must be in English or include an authentic English translation and have been evaluated by a NACES member organization for course-by-course equivalency.
  • Demonstration of content competency by way of the following:
    • Official college transcripts showing a conferred degree in the endorsement area or completion of 24 semester hours of relevant college-level coursework in your endorsement area and a completed worksheet for the desired endorsement area (alternative endorsement areas and worksheets) or
    • A copy of an official score report for the Colorado State Board of Education-approved content exam for the desired endorsement area.


You will need to include all prior work experience:

  • Include employer/business name, dates of employment, reason for leaving, work addresses, supervisor names and contact information.

You will also need to include a completed Statement of Assurance form:

  • Complete the applicant/candidate section of the Statement of Assurance of Employment form;
  • Forward the form to the school district or BOCES that employs you, and request that it be returned to you.
  • Provide the form to your approved program representative and request that the completed and signed version be returned to you.
  • Read, initial and then sign and date the bottom portion of this form.
  • You will include this form in your online application. You may also upload it within one calendar year after we've determined your qualification to participate in an alternative program (see the "before you begin" section above).



You are required to self-disclose and include documentation on any of the following:

  • Past criminal history
  • Disciplinary actions
  • Any issues related to licensure or employment



Once you have gathered all required documentation and have reviewed the rules governing the licensure process, you are ready to complete and submit a TEACHER application.

Important Reminders:

  • An application is deemed complete when CDE has received all required information, documentation and fees.
  • By submitting an application, you are verifying that the application is complete, that all requested documentation has been provided and that all questions within have been answered truthfully.
  • CDE will contact you within 45 days of receipt of your application should additional information be required to complete and evaluate your application. You then will have 60 days in order to submit the information, request consideration or withdraw your application, or the application will expire and you will need to reapply.
  • If we do not receive your background checks within 60 days of your application, your application will expire and you will need to reapply.
  • State statute prohibits the refunding of any application evaluation fee.
  • Once you have submitted an application, check your status online regularly for notifications, updates and/or to print a copy of your certificate.

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Questions? Email or call 303-866-6628.