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Alternative Certification


The state of South Carolina values teachers from all backgrounds and offers multiple pathways to certification. Many of these lead to full, professional certification, while others are only temporary. Visit https://ed.sc.gov/educators/alternative-certification/ for more information on approved certification pathways in South Carolina.

Program of Alternative Certification for Educators (PACE)

The Program of Alternative Certification for Educators (PACE) was established to enable degreed individuals, who otherwise do not meet certification requirements, to gain employment in the public schools in a PACE approved subject area teaching position based on their Bachelor's degree concentrations and coursework.PACE requires a three year commitment to the content area and grade level for which you are admitted. Candidates may be evaluated for K-12, middle level, or secondary certification.

Applying for Career and Technical Education (CTE) Work-Based Certification

Looking to teach others the skills you have as an industry professional? The career and technical education (CTE) work-based certification program enables individuals with industry work experience in certain career and technical fields to be eligible for employment as a 9-12 grade level teacher in a South Carolina public school district.

Alternative Certification Partner Programs

A variety of alternative certification programs allow potential educators holding a Bachelor's (or higher) degree who did not complete a traditional educator preparation program, to obtain certification and teach in South Carolina public schools. 

In addition to the PACE program outlined above, some of the programs you might explore are American Board or Teachers of Tomorrow, just to name a few!

Specialized Alternative Certificates

Specialized Alternative Certification pathways are designed for candidates with an extensive background in a particular discipline or program. 

This is a pathway you might want to explore if you are experienced in a Montessori program, advanced fine arts or any of the other options outlined on the South Carolina State Department of Education website.