Background Check Information
Educator Preparation Background Check Requirements
All graduate and undergraduate students who participate in a field experience, internship, practicum, and/or Residency placement are required to complete a Background Check Package, which consists of fingerprinting and required documentation. This Background Check Package will be housed in the Office of Educator Preparation and on file with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
An initial Background Check Package must be completed in EDFN 2400 OR upon entering an education program in Clemmer College. The required Background Check Package must be turned in to the Office of Educator Preparation, Warf-Pickel 305. Failure to comply with background check requirements could result in delay of placement.
Background Checks Packages are good for one calendar year. If you have completed an initial Background Check Package, you can complete an Affirmation of Background Check to extend the duration of the background check for another year. An Affirmation of Background Check is a document that affirms the status of the background check from when it was originally completed. A maximum of 2 consecutive Affirmation of Background Checks can be completed before another Background Check Package is required. This final Package occurs prior to beginning Residency/Internship. If you think your Background Check Package has expired or have questions about updating your background check, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Office of Educator Preparation at (423)439-7597 for more information.
Please make sure to read all Clemmer College Policy and Procedures before completing a Background Check Package.
Required Background Check Package
Background Check Package documentation includes:
- VECHS Waiver Agreement and Statement Form - Authorizes Clemmer College access to fingerprinting results from anyone requiring a background check through the college.
- Noncriminal Justice Applicant's Privacy Rights Form - Prevents Clemmer College from releasing background check history and/or information to any outside agencies.
- ETSU Authorization for Background Check Entry Form- Enforces background check guidelines from Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
Please follow the directions when submitting these forms to the Office of Field Experiences and Residency after fingerprinting has been completed. They cannot be accepted via email.
1). Print out and complete all three authorization forms linked above.
2). Place completed forms in a sealed envelope. Mail the sealed envelope to the following address:
East Tennessee State University
PO Box 70685
Johnson City, TN 37614
Or drop off in a sealed envelope to:
East Tennessee State University
Johnson City, TN 37614
Follow the steps outlined below to complete the fingerprinting process:
1. Using your web browser, go to https://tn.ibtfingerprint.com/workflow/28TY72 and click "Schedule a new Appointment."
2. Enter Service Code 28TY72. Click Continue with Child-Related Worker Volunteer (Private) service code.
3. Enter ORI number TNCC90028 and select go. Then click yes to confirm that East Tennessee State University is correct.
4. You will have to read an acknowledgment/ release form. Check I agree and select go.
5. Enter a zip code to determine the closest fingerprinting location.
6. Click on the word "Schedule" across from the location you want, under the day you wish to be fingerprinted. If you want a date further in the future, select the Next Week>> link to display more dates.
7. Once you select the location/date combination, select the time for your appointment and select go.
8. Complete the demographic information page. Required fields are indicated by a red asterisk (*). When complete, select "Submit" Information.
9. Confirm the information. Follow the on screen directions to make any necessary changes. Once you see the data is correct, select "Go."
10. If you are required to pay for your own fingerprinting, then you will be presented with payment options. Complete your payment process and select "Go."
11. Print your confirmation page.
12. Bring approved identification documents with you to the appointment. These approved document options are identified on your confirmation page of your appointment.
13. Arrive at the facility at your appointed date and time.
14. The Enrollment Officer at the site will check your ID, verify your information, verify or collect payment, capture your fingerprints, and submit your data.
**If you are an international student or non-Tennessee resident and need to complete fingerprinting, please come by the Office of Field Experiences and Residency to obtain appropriate paperwork. You may also call (423)439-7597.
Affirmation of Background Check
After an initial Background Check Package has been completed, students are required to complete an Affirmation of Background Check to extend the duration of the background check for another year. An Affirmation of Background Check is a document that affirms the status of the background check from when it was originally completed. A maximum of 2 consecutive Affirmation of Background Checks can be completed before another Background Check Package is required. This final Package occurs prior to beginning Residency/Internship.
Background Check Policy
Clemmer College guarantees the privacy of the background check information. Background information cannot be shared. Upon graduation, copies of background checks will be disposed of as dictated by University policy.
IdentoGO by MorphoTrust is the exclusive live scan fingerprinting provider for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and is a certified FBI Channeling Agent.
The background check must be completed at least FOUR WEEKS prior to submitting your residency application to ensure enough time for the results to be sent to ETSU Clemmer College. Your Residency Application WILL NOT be accepted if the background check information has not been received and clearance granted. Additionally, background checks over a year old at the time of the application deadline date will not be accepted.
The above information also applies to EDFN 2400 and any other course that requires a field experience.
Tennessee Code Annotated §49-5-5610 requires that any student wishing to enter an approved teacher education program must undergo a criminal history check and fingerprinting by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. The law also requires the student to sign an authorization and release form authorizing a qualified Tennessee Licensed private investigation company to complete a criminal history records check.
The State of Tennessee has enacted several statutes that require background checks. The Clemmer College will conduct background checks in compliance with state law; to demonstrate our commitment to protecting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults, and, thereby, help maintain our access to research, field, practicum, internship, and residency sites with children.
All graduate and undergraduate students seeking an initial teaching license are required to be fingerprinted, complete required documentation and have a criminal records check.
All graduate and undergraduate students seeking licensure in Counseling and Human Services are required to be fingerprinted and complete background check documentation as well.
Non-education majors enrolled in classes, such as EDFN 2400, that visit schools or agencies where children are present are required to undergo fingerprinting, complete all required documentation, and have criminal records checked before they can participate. Instructors of these classes should alert their students at the beginning of each semester and should include a notice in the course syllabus. Class visits to schools should be delayed to allow time for completion of the criminal records check for all students enrolled in the course.
For Residency Candidates, the background check required documentation should be printed and delivered to the Office of Field Experiences and Residency, Room 3232C, Warf Pickel after residency application has been submitted.
A background check will be completed in EDFN 2400 OR upon entering an education program. An Affirmation of Background Check form is required each year after an initial background check and required documentation have been completed. An additional background check must be completed prior to beginning residency, internship, or practicum. Any student arrested AFTER submitting a background check must notify the Office of Field Experiences and Residency within 5 days or prior to entering a school setting. Failure to do so could result in dismissal from the program.
Background Clearance Committee
All background checks are received and reviewed by the Director of Field Experiences and Residency (Room ). Should findings be reported by TBI, the Background Clearance Committee will review findings on a case by case basis and determine whether or not clearance will be granted.
Residency Candidates who have an offense which would preclude them from obtaining a license from the Tennessee Department of Education will be contacted immediately by the Director of Field Experiences and Residency and be asked to meet with the Background Clearance Committee. Decisions made by the Background Clearance Committee are final. Clearance can be denied for the following reasons (but not limited to):
Sexual misconduct with a minor
Repeated moving vehicle violations
Other illegal conduct unbecoming to a teacher
In the event that a student is excluded from participating in the clinical experience or entry into a program as a result of the background check, the Background Clearance Committee will provide in writing to the student an initial determination, which will include the basis upon which the determination was made, and allow the student the opportunity to review and provide comment on any information contained in the background check. The notification of the initial determination will include a copy of the document “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act,” which can be found at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/pdf-0096-fair-credit-reporting-act.pdf