Information For Districts / HR

Legislative Authority of the Alternative Pathway
The State Board of Education can allow Designated Agencies to create one-year and two-year alternative teacher programs to assist districts and BOCES that face a shortage of teachers and often struggle to find qualified persons to teach their students (State Statute 22-60.5-205 and the Educator Licensing Act Rules). Such programs shall:
  • Decrease the use of emergency authorizations to hire persons who do not have teacher licenses and, in some cases, have not received any form of teacher preparation thus jeopardizing a school district's goal of providing a quality education for each student; and
  • Identify persons with experience in areas other than education to help alleviate the teacher shortage faced by many school districts, so long as these persons receive adequate supervision and education in teaching methods and practices.
Colorado River BOCES is approved to serve as Designated Agency in Colorado (State Statute 22-60.5-102 [10] and 22-60.5-205 [2]). 

Candidates must demonstrate that they have sufficient knowledge of the content in which they are seeking licensure prior to being accepted into the program.  The program is designed to help candidates learn to teach not understand the content.  Candidates must also have a job as a teacher in the area in which they are seeking their license and endorsement.    An individual’s successful completion of an alternative teacher preparation program leads to a recommendation for initial licensure by the Designated Agency providing the program which allows the candidate to apply for and receive a regular teaching license.  

State Statute 22-60.5 was intended to address teacher shortages in public schools. Designated Agencies must serve an identified need(s) of a Colorado school district(s) or BOCES. Designated Agencies can create alternative preparation programs in numerous teacher endorsements areas. State Statute does not allow alternative licensure pathways for Specialized Service Professionals.

Typical Ways District Use Alternative Licensure Program
There are multiple ways in which schools and districts can use the alternative licensure pathway to aide in meeting the recruiting needs of the district.
  1. Homegrown - In this use case, a school knows of someone in the community (or already working in another capacity in the district) and encourages them to fill an open position.  Often times, high quality substitute teachers or para educators are recruited to fill positions. 
  2. Change of Career - Sometime an individual will seek out a position as a teacher as a change of career.  Often times, these candidates will then apply for positions, knowing they will be accepted in to the alternative program.
  3. Capacity Building - Knowing that you will need to fill a position within a few years, districts can hire an additional teaching position to allow the candidate to fully complete the program and be ready to fill a known vacancy the following year. 
Contact the Colorado River BOCES Director of Business Services if you have questions about how this program can be employed to meet the needs of your district of school.