Education and Schools Background Checks

Order Background Check

Students and parents should feel safe at school, and teacher background checks ensure the safety of children, students, and other staff members. Education employers must ensure they hire trustworthy employees and perform background screenings for authorized personnel, including teacher background checks and administrative staff background screenings. Teachers and staff members should be held to the highest ethical and professional standards.

Background checks protect educational institutions, students, and children from sexual misconduct and harm. The best hiring practices include teacher background checks and background screenings for staff members, such as bus drivers, coaches, librarians, custodial staff, cafeteria workers, principals, and superintendents.

Teacher background check laws vary in each state but generally check for federal and state criminal histories and crimes against children. Some institutions also conduct credit history checks and look for past child abuse or neglect records. Education and school background checks also include teacher certification verification, educational history, and work history.

Background screenings for authorized personnel and support staff may differ from teacher background checks and will depend on the position. For example, school bus drivers will undergo driving record checks in addition to criminal background checks.

Make sure you are hiring the right person for the job with Health Street’s drug screening and background check services. Order online today or call (888) 378-2499.

What Background Checks Does Health Street Offer in the Education and Schools Industry?

Criminal Background Check Packages

Every criminal background check ordered through Health Street always begins with a Social Security Number Trace. From there, you can add specific background checks, choose from one of our most popular packages, or build your own.

Platinum Background Check Package


Includes Everything in Triple Database Package (above) plus Courthouse Repository (State and/or County level).

Ultimate Package


Includes Everything in Platinum Package (above) plus a 10 panel drug test.

Build Your Own Package

(prices vary)

Customize your background check package to create the perfect package. Options include criminal database checks, sanctions, resume verifications, and drug tests.

Resume Verification

(starting at $39)

Background screening services to check a person’s job history, degrees, and references.

DOT Background Check

(starting at $39)

Ensure DOT compliance with Health Street’s driver screening services.


Education and Schools Crime Statistics

Results of a survey given to teachers at seven elementary schools showed that 45 percent of teachers admitted to bullying a student.
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) Educational Foundation conducted a nationwide survey showing that out of all students who reported sexual harassment in school, 38 percent were harassed by a teacher or other school staff member.
One study done on 40 schools reported that 32 of these schools had teachers and staff who knew a male teacher that made sexual advances to a student. Staff members and teachers in 26 of these schools knew a male teacher who got a student pregnant.

Education and Schools Background Check Laws

Education and school employers must ensure the safety of their students while protecting themselves from legal ramifications. Therefore, it’s essential for employers to become familiar with local, state, and federal background check laws.

All states require criminal background checks on K-12 teachers, and most states require criminal checks on all employees. Criminal background checks are conducted at state and federal levels and include state and federal sex offender registry checks.

Some states also check the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) clearinghouse (GAO, 2014), which provides information about teachers who lost their credentials from child abuse or sexual offenses. The information in this database is voluntarily provided by each state.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

Education employers conducting teacher background checks must protect themselves from lawsuits. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) provides procedures for conducting fair background checks while legally protecting the employer and the rights of applicants and employees.

The FCRA considers employee background checks “consumer reports,” so employers will face penalties for failing to comply with FCRA regulations regarding privacy, accuracy, and fairness of background checks. The FCRA regulates all information obtained in a consumer report, including credit reports, reference checks, and civil records. Employers that fail to follow FCRA regulations can be sued by applicants and employees.

Before conducting teacher background checks, employers must inform applicants and obtain written authorization. If an employer decides not to hire an applicant or take adverse employment action, the employee or applicant must first receive an adverse action notice with a copy of the consumer report and details of their rights under the FCRA. The employer must provide a waiting period before taking adverse employment action, allowing time for the applicant or worker to explain information found in the report. After the waiting period, the applicant or employee must receive a post-adverse action notice that includes information about the consumer reporting agency and an explanation of why the adverse action was taken.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) protects applicants and employees of educational institutions and forbids the employer to base hiring decisions on color, race, religion, sex, age, disability, national origin, genetic information, or gender identity. However, an exception to these regulations applies to religious educational institutions when the institution is based on a particular religion. The EEOC does not stop these employers from hiring or not hiring an applicant based on their religious beliefs, but it does prohibit discrimination based on race, age, sex, gender, color, and disability.

Frequently Asked Questions

What background checks are done for teachers?

Teacher background checks include federal and state criminal history checks, reference checks, state and federal sex offender registry checks, educational and employment background screenings, teacher certification verifications, and in some cases, credit history checks.

Do universities do background checks on professors?

University background checks are only required by some states. Although background checks are not required at every university, most colleges perform background screenings on applicants or new hires to protect their students and faculty.


“What Kind of Background Checks Do I Need to Work in a School?” Top Education Degrees,
“Guide to Higher Education Background Checks on Staff & High Profile Positions.” Barada Associates,
“Policies and Procedures for Hiring Practices.” Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools,
“NASDTEC Clearinghouse.” National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification,
“Fair Credit Reporting Act.” Federal Trade Commission (FTC),
Holland, Ron and Batten, Jonathan. “FCRA 101: How to Avoid Risky Background Checks.” Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 20 October 2017,
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC),
“SCOTUS Rules Federal Employment Discrimination Laws Do Not Extend to Catholic School Teachers.” Eisenberg & Baum, LLP, 11 December 2020,
“Pre-Employment Inquiries and Religious Affiliation or Beliefs.” U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC),
“Employees & Applicants.” U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC),
“Teacher-Perpetrated Crime and Violence in High School.” Criminal Justice Research,
Bouchrika, Imed. “40 Student Crime Statistics: 2021/2022 Data, Analysis & Predictions.”, 5 October 2022,