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Candidacy Process

Once you have been approved as an instructor candidate, Safe Kids will send you a copy of all Certification Course instructor materials so you can begin preparing. Your state CPS training contact will also be notified of your new status.

Before the Course

Maintain your CPS certification during your candidacy. Learn more about how to recertify on the I’m a Tech/Recertification page.

If you haven’t already done so, find a course and work with the lead instructor to get permission to participate as an instructor candidate (IC). It is the responsibility of the instructor or course administrator setting up a course to include you on the instructor team and designate your mentor. You must be officially listed on the instructor team as an instructor candidate for a specific course prior to teaching during that course. If you are not officially listed and you participate as an IC, it will jeopardize your instructor candidacy and the validity of the certification for all students participating in that course.

Next, you will need to review the evaluation and expections with your mentor before the course begins. This form is also provided with the IC manual and online. You will work with your mentor and lead instructor as you study the curriculum and prepare to teach.

During the Course

Instructor candidates must attend the entire Certification Course, including all pre- or post-course instructor meetings. It is the shared responsibility of the lead instructor, the mentor and the instructor candidate to be sure assignments are completed. All assignments for the IC will be monitored and evaluated by the mentor(s) and should include as many aspects of the course as possible (teaching, set up, testing, etc.).

Teaching recommendations for instructor candidates include:

  1. Lecture for at least five hours, divided among at least three modules
  2. Set up a hands-on exercise (classroom or vehicle)
  3. Be the lead for a different hands-on exercise
  4. Participate in a community seat checkup event

For skills assessments, ICs may sign off or grade students under the supervision of your mentor using your Certification ID (T#). Your mentor will co-sign all paperwork.

At the end of each day, your mentor will evaluate your work. All feedback from the instructor team is funneled through the mentor(s) to you. Mentors should make every effort to help improve your skills.

After the Course

At the end of the course the mentor will provide the evaluation to the lead instructor, who will enter the grade of pass/fail online. Your IC evaluation also will be provided to Safe Kids following the course. Your mentor, the lead instructor and you should keep a copy.

Upon successful completion of instructor candidacy, your status will become “Certified Instructor” and you will begin a new two-year certification cycle. Safe Kids will mail your official notification letter with your newly-issued instructor certification ID within 20 business days after the course has been finalized.

If you do not earn a passing grade, work with the instructor team to improve your skills and please try again. If you do not become a certified instructor within one year, your status will revert from Instructor Candidate to Certified Technician. At that time you will need to pay a new fee and complete a new application to continue working toward becoming a certified instructor.

Safe Kids wants to help ensure a positive experience for all instructor candidates. Safe Kids will not accept appeals based on missed deadlines, but you may file a written complaint about an instructor, teaching environment, or other issues. To learn more, visit “Filing a Complaint.”

For more information:

Please refer to the section about instructor candidacy in our Policies & Procedures Manual, and review the various tools for instructor candidates, mentors and instructors.