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Industry we Service

Education

Education

University, K-12, and Private Schools

Background Checks in Education: Schools and Universities


What you should know:


All employers are responsible for ensuring the safest work environment for their employees. Workers deserve to walk into any work environment, from manufacturing factories to corporate offices, knowing their employer has taken steps to protect them from potential risks and threats. Schools and school districts have this same responsibility to provide a safe work environment for their employees. Still, they also have the added obligation of providing a secure, nurturing learning environment for their students.


Teacher background checks are a core of this equation and a crucial step that schools take to ensure that they are doing their due diligence and living up to their responsibilities. Indeed, most in the education sector would acknowledge the importance of background checks as part of the hiring process for schools, universities, and other educational institutions. However, that’s not to say that every school takes the same approach when conducting employee background checks.


Below, we will delve into why background checks are so important for not just teachers but all other employees working in education. We will also look at the specific types of background checks that schools typically conduct on their employees to ensure a safe environment for students, other staff, visitors, and more. Finally, we’ll examine how education background checks sometimes intersect with the screening protocols for other sectors – such as youth sports.


Which background checks are done for teachers?


Background checks for teachers will usually include some or all of the following:


  • Criminal history checks. Criminal history searches—whether at the county, state, or federal level—are central to most employee and teacher background checks. Schools look for a history of violence, sexual abuse, child abuse, or neglect – though other crimes, including drug offenses, may also be considered red flags. At backgroundchecks.com, we offer the US Basic Criminal, which not only searches 650 million criminal records from across the United States and associated territories but also sex offender registries.

  • Professional license checks. Teachers must be licensed and certified at the state level to teach in a school environment. Schools will often take steps to verify an applicant’s teacher certification before finalizing a new hire.

  • Education verifications. To become a licensed teacher, a professional must have a teaching degree from an accredited college or university. School background checks will often incorporate education verification to check that the education and degree a teacher claims are genuine.

  • Employment history checks. As with most other employee background checks, teacher checks typically include an employment history check. This background check allows schools to verify past employment listed on a teacher’s resume and get a sense of the teacher’s professional experience. If a teacher were fired from a past job for misconduct, this background check would often reveal that information. Schools may also use reference checks, speaking to a teacher’s former employers or colleagues to learn about their teaching style, work ethic, manner with students, and other characteristics.


Other checks may also be a part of the process for teacher screenings. Drug testing is not uncommon, as schools are usually strict drug-free workplaces. Some schools may also request ongoing criminal monitoring for their teachers to be notified if an existing employee is arrested, charged, or convicted of a crime. While some school districts (and even some states) have policies for their schools, those rules work on an honor system basis. Ongoing monitoring can provide a more reliable means for schools to spot newer criminal activity among their employees.


At Omnidelve LLC, we proudly offer our clients an affordable ongoing criminal monitoring service.

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