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New checks on school employees in place, but slow to take effect

New checks on school employees in place, but slow to take effect



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SALT LAKE CITY -- New rules are in place to check teachers' backgrounds in Utah, but there are some hold-ups to implementing them.

State Superintendent Larry Shumway said at a legislative briefing Tuesday computer glitches have slowed the process of running checks on all employees. The Salt Lake Tribune reports fingerprinting employees could take at least a year, but it would open the door to national screening.

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Under the new rules, teachers must now undergo background checks every five years when they renew their licenses. Staff workers, like bus drivers, are now subject to periodic checks.

Shumway says that's far different to what was in place before. Workers at schools were only checked when they were hired. It's estimated thousands of employees may have never been checked, because they were hired before it was required.

The Tribune reports school workers must also now report any arrests or convictions within 48 hours, or they'll be flagged by the Department of Public Safety.

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