Educator Certification

Educator Certification

Published: 7/5/2024 11:34 AM

​The Office of Educator Licensure and Effectiveness is responsible for issuing and renewing certificates for all Kentucky teachers and administrators.

Certification Specialists work closely with local school districts in the hiring process to ensure a properly credentialed educator in every professional position in Kentucky schools.

New KECS ​Certification Platform Launched

The Office of Educator Licensure and Effectiveness (OELE) in partnership with Randa Solutions, Inc. officially launched the Kentucky Educator Credentialing System (KECS) on May 2nd, 2022. The new system is being implemented as part of a multi-phase project to transition educator certification, educator preparation and EPSB legal processes to an online platform to help streamline user experiences, decrease turnaround time as well as increase accuracy and efficiency.

Kentucky Educator Credentialing System (KECS) Support Contact Information: 

For login issues, please contact the Randa Solutions help desk 
via phone @ (866) 287-2077

Phase one – Educator Certification – Educator Preparation (Admission/Exit) - Legal 

As of May 2, 2022, all educators applying for initial certification, renewal or rank change will now complete the process through the new KECS system. The KECS system removes old processes of completing and uploading paper forms allowing a more streamlined experience for applicants, Educator Preparation Providers (EPPs) and school districts. 

Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB) legal and ethics processes have also transitioned to KECS as well. While it may look a little different, superintendents will complete a similar process when filing complaints for legal matters. The new system allows for EPSB legal staff to track and handle educator cases brought to the EPSB.

Please access the KECS system website or view the frequently asked questions (FAQ)​ related to applying for certification. For login issues, please email the Randa Solutions help desk at .

Phase two – Local Educator Assignment Data (LEAD)

LEAD - Kentucky school district processes for ensuring certified educators hold the appropriate credentials and permissions to teach the assigned courses.

Phase three – Field Experience Tracking - Cooperating Teacher – Educator Program Review 

Kentucky Field Experience Tracking System (KFETS) – Kentucky students enrolled in an​​ educator preparation program track the required 200 hours of field experience prior to student teaching.

Cooperating Teacher Payment Program (COOP) – Tracking system for maintaining and paying cooperating teachers that support student teachers.

Kentucky Educator Program Review System (KEPRS) – System for housing program requirements for all Kentucky EPPs. 

​Alternative Routes to Teacher Certification

The Kentucky General Assembly, under KRS 161.048 has enacted alternative routes to teacher and administrator certification for persons who have demonstrated exceptional work and/or educational experiences. There are eight options for alternative teacher certification under state statute. Unsure which option is best for you? Complete the pathway to certification form to determine which pathway you should explore​. 

Option 1:  Exceptional Work Experience​​

Candidates with exceptional, non-teaching work experience in an academic content area, who have a minimum of a bachelor's degree with a 2.75 GPA, may be eligible for this pathway.


Option 2: Local District Training Program

Certification may be attained through an approved local program conducted by a local school district or group of school districts. Candidates must have a minimum of a bachelor's degree, 2.75 GPA, a passing score on the academic content assessment in the area in which certification is being sought and an offer of employment. (There are no current Option 2 programs approved by the EPSB.)


Option 3:  College Faculty

Candidates who have a minimum of a master’s degree in an academic content area and have at least five years of full-time teaching experience in the content area at the college level may be eligible for certification for the specific content under this route.


Option 4:  Adjunct Instructor (P-12)

The Adjunct Instructor Certification does not lead to professional certification in Kentucky. However, it does allow those who have expertise and a minimum of a bachelor’s degree with a major or minor in an academic content area and meet other qualifications to teach part-time on a contract basis. 


Option 5:  Armed Forces Veterans

A pathway to certification for veterans with at least six years of eligible military service and an honorable discharge who have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in an academic content area or meet Praxis II academic content assessment requirements, and a GPA of at least 2.75. Please, contact Norma Andrade at for more information.


Option 6:  University-Based Alternative Route

Individuals who hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree in a non-teaching major interested in attaining initial teacher certification; meet university admission requirements and a GPA of at least 2.75.


Option 7:  Institute Alternative Route

In this option, candidates complete training through an approved institute that addresses multiple research-based teaching strategies and practices. Candidates with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in an academic content area, 2.75 GPA, a passing score on the GRE or Core Academic Skills for Educators assessment, and a passing score on the Praxis II academic content assessment in the area in which certification is being sought may be eligible for this pathway. The EPSB has approved two Option 7 programs: The CKEC Teacher Certification Institute​ and the Nelson County Schools​ New Teacher Institute.

This route is for initial certification only. Please review the information below. If you feel that you may be an eligible candidate through this route, please email Sharon Salsman​

You are a candidate for this route if you:

  • Possess a bachelor's degree with a declared academic major in the area in which certification is sought or a graduate degree in a field related to the area in which certification is sought;

  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of two and seventy-five hundredths (2.75) on a four (4) point scale or a minimum grade point average of three (3) on a four (4) point scale on the last thirty (30) hours of credit completed, including undergraduate and graduate coursework from a nationally or regionally accredited postsecondary institution;

  • Have a passing score on the GRE or CASE as designated by the Education Professional Standards Board. (A candidate who has a terminal degree shall be exempt); 

  • Have a passing score on the academic content assessment in the area in which certification is being sought as designated by the Education Professional Standards Board.

Prior to receiving the one (1) year provisional certificate or during the first year of the certificate, the teacher shall complete the following:

  • A candidate seeking elementary teaching, the individual shall successfully complete the equivalent of a two hundred forty (240) hour institute, based on six (6) hour days for eight (8) weeks.

  • A candidate seeking middle and secondary teaching, the individual shall successfully complete the equivalent of a one hundred eighty (180) hour institute, based on six (6) hour days for six (6) weeks. 

Option 8:  Teach For America (TFA)

A national nonprofit organization that recruits, trains and supports outstanding recent college graduates for career placement in participating school districts within the Appalachian Region of Kentucky. For more information please contact Teach for America Appalachia.

Option 9: Expedited Route

This is an expedited route to certification that results in a bachelor's degree and initial certification within three school years. The route requires a college or university to partner with a district or group of districts to develop a program that includes a paraprofessional/residency component and utilizes experienced teachers to provide coaching and mentoring. Though this route requires a candidate to be employed in a classified position while completing coursework, it does not allow the candidate to serve as a teacher while enrolled in the route. To serve as a teacher, an individual must possess a teaching certificate. The Option 9 alternative route only provides for initial certification once the candidate completes the bachelor’s degree and certification assessments.
Programs and participants will be required to meet the requirements of KRS 161.048(10) and the 16 KAR 9:110E.

  • Educator Tuition Assistance Opportunities

  • Grow-Your-Own Programs

    ​​​​​Recruiting new teachers to the profession is a vital effort to address significant teacher shortages and expand teacher workforce diversity in the state. Recruitment of future teachers can begin early, and no one is better equipped to begin this process than educators themselves. Once students are identified and recruited, a comprehensive school program employing the Teaching and Learning career pathway and Educators Rising, a Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO), gives the student a solid foundation of career preparation. Students receive formalized training in the classroom, while participation in the CTSO supports student learning through development of leadership skills, positive personal attributes, and real world application.

  • Jobs for Administrators and Teachers

  • Recruitment and Retention

    ​​​​The most important factor in the achievement of our students is the effectiveness of the teachers and principals who serve them. 


Division of Educator Certification and Preparation
Phone: (502) 564-4606
Fax: (502) 564-7092


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