By law, teachers must hold a current Colorado Teaching or Special Services license on or before the first day of teaching in a classroom or working with students as a special service provider issued by the Colorado Department of Education (CDE).
- Apply online for your Colorado Educator License If you have questions, call the CDE at (303) 866-6628.
- For more information on licensure or to apply for your Colorado Teaching or Special Services license, visit the CDE website.
You may also need to take a Colorado state-approved content exam. This will be determined by the type of license issued to you by the Colorado Department of Education. For up-to-date information on content exams visit the CDE Content Exam Website.
Common types of Colorado Teaching and Special Services Licenses include:
Initial Teaching License: Issued to those who are a new Colorado graduate who has passed the state approved content exam (PLACE exam or PRAXIS II exam). It is valid for three years. For information on Colorado's state approved content exams please click here.
Interim Authorization: Issued to an out-of-state applicant (teacher, principal, and administrator) who does not have 3 years of full-time out-of-state K-12 work experience and has not passed the required Colorado content area exam. The Interim Authorization is issued for one year and is renewable once. For more information on the PLACE and PRAXIS exams please click here.
Professional Teaching License: Issued to an initial license holder who has completed an approved induction program, is valid for five years and is renewable through documentation of either six semester hours of credit or 90 clock hours of activities or a combination thereof. Professional licenses are also issued to out-of- state educators who can demonstrate three or more years of continuous, successful evaluated teaching experience.
Alternative Teacher License: Issued to an individual who has earned a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and possesses subject matter knowledge appropriate for teaching in public schools; agrees to participate in an on-the-job, one-year, alternative teacher preparation program; is valid for three years and is not renewable.