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Become a Substitute / Guest Teacher!
Make Up to $200 per Day!
While compensation varies from district to district, you can make between $100 and $200 a day as a substitute teacher. Colorado issues three types of substitute authorizations -- 1-year authorization, 3-year authorization and 5-year authorization -- based on your educational background and experience, which allow you to work in this capacity in a Colorado public school district, BOCES or charter school. All substitute authorizations are valid for serving in K-12 classrooms, yet are issued without a specific content or endorsement area.
Want to work with younger students? Substitute in a preschool classroom! Your CDE-issued substitute authorization allows school districts to hire you as a substitute for director and early childhood teacher vacancies. Apply and start working with Colorado's youngest school-aged children today!
NEW! In an effort to assist districts and students in these uncertain times, we have added a fourth authorization specifically for the 2020-2021 academic year. (See details below.)
Colorado students need you! Visit the Step Into Substitute Teaching webpage for additional information about how you can earn money, influence lives, and make a difference!
5-Year Substitute Authorization
A 5-year substitute authorization requires you to hold a current or expired Colorado teacher license/certificate or a current out-of-state teacher license/certificate and have a current finger-print based background on file with CDE. During the application process, you will be required to upload a copy of the teacher license. Alternative or provisional teacher, special services provider, principal and administrator licenses and CTE and substitute authorizations do not qualify; it must be a full teacher license.
Once issued, the authorization is valid in all Colorado school districts, BOCES, charter schools and approved facility schools.
3-Year Substitute Authorization
A 3-year substitute authorization requires you to hold an earned bachelor's or higher degree from an accepted, regionally accredited college or university and have a fingerprint-based history on file with CDE. During the application process, you will be required to upload a copy of the official, degree-conferred transcript(s) into your application.
Once issued, the authorization is valid in all Colorado school districts, BOCES, charter and approved facility schools.
1-Year Substitute Authorization
A one-year substitute authorization requires you to hold a high school diploma or its equivalent and have a fingerprint-based history on file with CDE. These authorizations are district-, BOCES- or charter school-specific, and not all Colorado districts, BOCES or charter schools hire individuals with this authorization. When they do, the district, BOCES or charter school will provide you a completed form to include in your application.
Once issued, the authorization is valid only in the requesting school district, BOCES, charter or approved facility school.
**NEW**Colorado Substitute Stipend
The Colorado Department of Education, in partnership with the Colorado Center for Rural Education at the University of Northern Colorado, are pleased to announce the availability of a $300 stipend that can be used to reimburse a variety of costs associated with obtaining a substitute authorization. Individuals with a valid 1-year, 3-year, 5-year or 2020-21 Substitute Authorization may qualify for the stipend upon meeting eligibility requirements detailed below.
To be eligible for the $300 funding, individuals must:
- Obtain a valid Colorado substitute authorization
- Register and attend a Substitute Boot Camp
- Work a minimum of one day as a substitute in a Colorado school district, BOCES, charter or approved facility school.
Eligible applicants must submit a completed Substitute Certification Form and W-9. Stipends are limited and will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to submit your application early! Additional information, including application details, are available on the Substitute Stipend Details document.
Are you ready to be a sub? The Substitute Boot Camp is a FREE, virtual seminar specifically designed to support, assist and encourage substitute teachers with starting their first day on the job. The Substitute Boot Camp is an excellent resource for currently authorized substitute teachers and individuals who are in-process of obtaining their substitute authorization. Participants will learn about their roles and responsibilities as a substitute teacher, including:
- Understanding and executing academic lesson plans
- Preparing lesson plans when lesson plans aren't available
- Classroom management
- Maintaining appropriate student records, including recording grades
- School policy and emergency response
Participants will also have opportunities for networking and connecting with experienced educators. Substitute Boot Camps will be led by experienced educators from our Troops to Teachers team and will feature guest speakers currently working in Colorado's K-12 classrooms.
Substitute Boot Camps are scheduled to be held via Zoom 4 - 6:30 pm on the following dates unless otherwise noted with an asterisk(*):
- Thursday, April 1* (4 - 7:30 pm)
- Thursday, April 15* (4 - 7:30 pm)
- Thursday, May 27
- Thursday, June 17
- Thursday, July 22
- Thursday, August 5
- Thursday, August 26
- Thursday, September 9
- Thursday, September 23
Step into substitute teaching with confidence and support! Additional information is available on the Substitute Boot Camp flyer.
Register for a Substitute Boot Camp today! NOTE: Boot Camps are filling up quickly! Be sure to register early! Registration for each virtual seminar will close 3 days prior to the event.
New! 2020-21 Substitute Authorization
Similar to the 1-year substitute authorization, a 2020-21 substitute authorization requires you to hold only a minimum of a high school diploma or its equivalent and a fingerprint-based history on file with CDE. Unlike the 1-year authorization, the 2020-21 authorization is NOT district-, BOCES- or charter school-specific and does not require a verification form. Ideal for college students and graduates, individuals between jobs or considering changing careers, and anyone interested in serving their communities and its students! During the application process, you will be required to confirm completion of high school or its equivalent.
Once issued, the authorization is valid only through June 30, 2021, in any accepting Colorado school district, BOCES, charter or approved facility school.
Get started on your path to substitute teaching! It's as easy as 1, 2, 3!
1. If you've not already done so, submit your fingerprints to CBI for CDE licensure purposes.
2. Select "click to apply" beneath the authorization type for which you qualify (above), then follow the steps on the checklist and submit an application.
3. Visit our school districts web page to identify the districts in which you would like to serve and give them a call!
Please contact Educator Licensing.
Tools for Districts
CDE's Communications Office has created a toolkit that districts can use in their efforts to recruit substitutes. Materials include social media images, sample posts and a printable flyer.
If you have ideas for additional resources that would be helpful to include in the toolkit, reach out and let us know by emailing CDE_Communications_Office@cde.state.co.us.