As of April 1, 2007, Act 114 of 2006 has required that ALL prospective employees of public and private schools, including their independent contractors and their employees, but excluding employees who do not have direct contact with students, undergo background checks. Applicants are required to submit their background check reports to their prospective public and private school employers. The law also requires student teachers to undergo background checks and present their reports to their higher education institution prior to field experience. There are three required background checks for ALL applicants:
The Background Check requires a $22.00 payment in the form of a credit card, certified check or money order made payable to the Commonwealth of PA.
Application for the Child Abuse Clearance can be made through electronic submission or paper submission. The Child Abuse Clearance requires a $13.00 payment in the form of a credit card, certified check or money order dependent upon submission method.
Federal Criminal History Background Checks required by Act 114 of 2006, 24 PS 1-111 as amended (Act 61 of 2008)
- Student teachers (participating in classroom teaching, internships, clinical or field experience),
- Prospective employees of public and private schools, Intermediate Units and Area Vocational-Technical Schools (including, but not limited to: administrators, teachers, substitutes, custodians, cafeteria workers and office employees), and
- Independent contractors and their employees (including, but not limited to: bus drivers, PIAA Sports Officials, and construction workers).
The FBI Clearance requires a $22.60 payment depending on submission method.
Appointments may be scheduled for fingerprinting services,or applicant may use the walk-in service.
Prospective employees/student teacher candidates/contractors and their employees, hereafter referred to collectively as applicant, are to submit with their employment application State and Federal criminal history reports (for the Federal Criminal History Report the applicant is to submit their Universal Enrollment ID (UEID) or a copy of the completed form/request. Criminal history reports (results of background checks) shall be no more than one year old at the time of hire.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Sexual Misconduct/Abuse Disclosure Release (Act 168)amends the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L. 30, No.14), known as the “PublicSchool Code of 1949,” to provide direction regarding employment history review processes and for monitoring of electronic public safety and criminal justice information related to educators.As of December 22, 2014, a school entity or an independent contractor (collectively referred to herein as “hiring entity”) may not hire any applicant for a position in which the employee will have direct contact with children until the school entity has complied with the employment history review process delineated in Act 168. (24 P.S. § 1-111.1). Under Act 168, in addition to satisfying pre-existing employment requirements under the Public School Code of 1949 and 23 Pa.C.S. §§ 6354-58 (the Child Protective Services Law), a hiring entity must require an applicant for any position in which there is a possibility of direct contact with children to complete Section 1 of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Sexual Misconduct/Abuse Disclosure Release form for all employers that fall within the following categories:
(1). The applicant’s current employer (regardless of whether the employer was a school entity and/or where the applicant had direct contact with children);
(2). All former employers of the applicant that were school entities; and
(3). All former employers where the applicant was employed in a position where he or she had direct contact with children.
Note that the applicant must fill out a separate Sexual Misconduct/Abuse Disclosure Release form for each employer that falls within the above-listed categories. The applicant is not required, however, under Act 168 to disclose current or previous volunteer positions. The applicant must also consent to the current/former employer’s disclosure of any information regarding abuse and/or sexual misconduct. Under Act 168, the hiring entity is prohibited from hiring an applicant for a position involving direct contact with children unless the applicant provides the required information on the form and consent.