Unless otherwise authorized in accordance with laws and regulations, the district shall not employ or utilize a prospective school employee, as defined in the accompanying regulations, unless the State Education Department (SED) has granted such prospective school employee a “full” clearance for employment. The district shall require a prospective school employee who is not in the SED criminal history file to be fingerprinted for purposes of a criminal history record check.
Prior to initiating the fingerprinting process, the district shall furnish the applicant with written notice on a form prepared by the Commissioner of Education addressing the fingerprinting requirements and the applicant’s right to obtain, review and seek correction of his/her criminal history information. Additionally, where the prospective school employee is not already in the SED criminal history file, the district shall obtain the signed, informed consent of the applicant to perform the criminal history check. Every set of fingerprints taken shall be promptly submitted to the Commissioner of Education for purposes of clearance for employment.
Where the prospective school employee is already in the SED criminal history file, the district shall request the clearance for employment. Furthermore, the district shall notify SED of a prospective school employee who has commenced employment with the district, the date of the commencement of such employment or service, and the position held by such fingerprinted employee who has been separated from employment with the district or ceased providing services for the district and the date of such separation from employment or cessation of such services.
Unless otherwise exempted pursuant to law, the applicant shall be responsible for the payment of fees for a criminal history record check.
The Board of Education recognizes that there may be instances in which it is necessary, upon recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools, for the Board to make a conditional appointment or an emergency conditional appointment of a prospective employee. To provide for the safety of students and staff members who have contact with an employee holding a conditional appointment or an emergency conditional appointment, the Board adopts the following policy:
Conditional Appointments NOTE: Valid through July 1, unless amended by Legislature
Prior to commencement of such conditional appointment, the district must obtain a signed statement for conditional employment from the prospective employee indicating whether, to the best of his/her knowledge, the prospective employee has a pending criminal charge or criminal conviction in any jurisdiction.
Whenever possible, a “full” clearance will be received for all new employees requiring such clearance before they begin work for the district. However, upon the recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools, the Board of Education may conditionally appoint a prospective employee. A request for conditional clearance shall be forwarded to the Commissioner of Education along with the prospective employee’s fingerprints as mandated pursuant to the law. Such conditional appointment shall not commence until notification by the Commissioner that the prospective employee has been conditionally cleared for employment.
Upon receipt of a final determination from the Commissioner following the required criminal records check, the conditional nature of the appointment shall be removed and the appointment shall be converted into a regular appointment without further action by the Board of Education provided that final clearance for employment is granted by the Commissioner.
Conditional appointments are valid for 45 days. This 45 day period may not be extended or renewed unless the commissioner issues a new conditional clearance after finding that there was a good cause for failing to obtain clearance within the initial 45 day period. Absent such extension or renewal by the Commissioner the employment must be terminated until such time that a determination from the Commissioner is reached.
Emergency Conditional Appointments NOTE: Valid through July 1, 2012, unless amended by Legislature
Upon the recommendation of the Superintendent of Schools, the Board may make an emergency conditional appointment when an unforeseen emergency vacancy has occurred. When such an appointment is made, the process for conditional appointment as outlined above must also be initiated.
Emergency conditional appointment may commence prior to notification from the Commissioner of Education on conditional clearance but shall terminate twenty (20) business days from the date such appointment commences or when the district is notified by the Commissioner that conditional clearance is either granted or denied, whichever occurs earlier; however, if conditional clearance is granted, the appointment shall continue as a conditional appointment.
The district must obtain a signed statement for emergency conditional appointment from the prospective employee, indicating whether, to the best of his or her knowledge, he or she has a pending criminal charge or criminal conviction in any jurisdiction.
An unforeseen emergency vacancy shall be defined as:
a) a vacancy that occurred less than ten (10) business days before the start of any school session including summer school, or during any school session including summer school, without sufficient notice to allow for full clearance or conditional clearance (however, this ten (10) business daytime frame provision shall not apply if the Board of Education finds that the School district has been unable to fill the vacancy despite good faith efforts to fill the vacancy in a manner that would have allowed sufficient time for full clearance or conditional clearance); and
b) When no other qualified person is available to fill the vacancy temporarily; and
c) When the emergency conditional appointment is necessary to maintain services which the district is legally required to provide or services necessary to protect the health, education or safety of students or staff.
Supervision of Staff Members during the Period of Conditional or Emergency Conditional Appointments
During the period of any staff member’s conditional appointment or emergency conditional appointment, the Superintendent or his/her designee shall advise the staff member’s immediate supervisor or building principal of the status of such staff member’s appointment. The immediate supervisor or building principal shall, upon the commencement of the staff member’s employment, meet with the staff member to review safety considerations and expectations for any contact such staff member will have with students and other staff. The Human Resources Department shall promptly notify the Superintendent, the immediate supervisor or building principal of any changes in the staff member’s appointment status, including any change which removes the conditional nature of the appointment.
The building principal or his/her designee shall provide heightened administrative supervision of such employees while on school district property during the period of their conditional or emergency conditional appointment, including, for example, unannounced visits to classrooms, walking the hallways, and/or any other activities the principal determines to be appropriate.
Ref: Education Law S S 112501133m 1709 8 NYCRR SS 100.2(hh); Part 87
Adopted: June 18, 2012