Criminal Background Checks

Criminal Background Checks

Criminal Background Checks
Summary of Clearance and Other Requirements: 
The district requires appropriate state criminal background checks as outlined in law on any individual recommended to be employed in a paid position.  Act 114 - 24 requires applicants to public and private schools to obtain three reports: the PA State Police criminal history report, the FBI criminal history report, and the State Department of Public Welfare (DPW) Child Abuse report.

On December 1, 2017, the fee for a Criminal History Record Check increased to $22.00. 

1. Criminal Record

PENNSYLVANIA STATE CRIMINAL HISTORY RECORD (link)

Fee: $22.00 payable to Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

or: https://epatch.state.pa.us/Home.jsp

 Applicants may apply online through PATCH and obtain their report online, or *Applicants may also use Form SP-164, Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Record Check and mail a money order to the PA State Police with the application. The paper form may also be downloaded at the above site.
 
What is contained in the PA State Police criminal history report?
The information provided by the requestor will be checked against the criminal history database maintained by the Pennsylvania State Police Central Repository only, and does not preclude the existence of criminal records which might be contained in the repositories of other local, state, or federal criminal justice agencies.

2. Child Abuse Report 

Fee: $13.00 payable to Department of Human Services
 
* On July 1, 2018, the fee for PA child abuse history clearances will be increasing from $8 to $13. Amendments to the Child Protective Services Law in 2014 and 2015 expanded who is required to receive child abuse clearances and that clearances must be renewed every five years, resulting in the number of PA child abuse history clearance applications increasing exponentially. The passage of Act 40 of 2017 included a maximum fee increase to $13 for PA child abuse history clearances to assist in covering actual costs for processing these clearances.
 
Electronic Submission  

Child Abuse History Clearance Online:   https://www.compass.state.pa.us/CWIS

Creating an account and submitting your clearance application online will give you immediate access to your results or the status of your results if your results cannot be processed immediately.

Organizations who want to set up business accounts must first register for a Business Partner User account using the “Organization Account Access” link on the Child Welfare Portal. Organization accounts will allow businesses and organizations to purchase child abuse history clearance payment codes and distribute those codes to applicants. When an applicant uses a code given to them by an organization, the organization will have access to the applicant’s child abuse history clearance results once those results are processed.

Paper Submission

Paper submissions of the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance application will still be accepted for anyone who may not have access to the internet. Submit paper applications to:

ChildLine and Abuse Registry
Pennsylvania Department of Human Services

PO Box 8170
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8170

1. The instructions for how to complete the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance application are now included on the last page of the application and can be printed for easy reference when completing the application. Failure to comply with the instructions that are attached to the application will cause considerable delay in processing the results.

2. Applicants can now type their information directly onto the application or the information can be hand written onto the application.

3. If the information is typed directly onto the application, the information will NOT be able to be saved on a computer unless the computer has a licensed version of the acrobat adobe software. Therefore, please be sure to print the completed application before closing the document so that the information typed on the application is not lost.

4. If you have trouble accessing the application you may need to download the latest version of Adobe Reader, which is available free on the internet.

NOTE: ALL information that has been entered directly onto the application will be lost if you close the application prior to printing it (if your computer does not have a licensed version of the Acrobat Adobe software).

Once the application is received in the ChildLine and Abuse Registry’s Verification Unit, the results of the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance will be mailed to the applicant’s address that was noted on the application within 14 days from the date that the application is received in the ChildLine Verification Unit.

CY113 form – English Child Abuse Clearance

On January 1, 2019, the fee for an FBI Criminal History Record Check increased to $23.85.

3. FBI Fingerprinting

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has changed to a new electronic fingerprinting vendor, IDEMIA, for Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) criminal history background checks. 
 
Please follow the Beaver Valley Intermediate Unit (BVIU) link HERE for regular and holiday fingerprinting hours.

"The Beaver Valley Intermediate Unit would like to stress that in order to provide the best service for our customers our priority is scheduled appointments first over walk-ins.  If we are fully booked with appointments that day you have the option to wait for a spot that might become available or return another day with a scheduled appointment.  If you have questions about scheduling appointments please contact IdentoGo at 855-845-7434."

APPLICANT PROCEDURES

Fee: $23.85; All applicants will now receive an unofficial copy of their report. Fee is payable to IDEMIA. 

The fingerprint-based background check is a multiple-step process, as follows:

  1. Registration - The applicant must register prior to going to the fingerprint site. Walk in service is allowed but all applicants are required to complete pre-enrollment in the new Universal Enrollment system. Pre-enrollment can be completed online or over the phone. The registration website is available online 24 hours/day, seven days per week at https://uenroll.identogo.com. Telephonic registration is available at 1-844-321-2101 Monday through Friday, 8am to 6pm EST. During the pre-enrollment process, all demographic data for the applicant is collected (name, address, etc.) along with notices about identification requirements and other important information. 

    When registering on-line, an applicant must use the appropriate agency specific Service Code (for Employment: 1KG6XN, for Volunteers: 1KG6Y3) to ensure they are processed for the correct agency and/or applicant type.  Using the correct service code ensures the background check is submitted for the correct purpose.   Fingerprint requests processed through any other agency or purpose cannot be accepted and are not transferrable.  If an applicant enters the wrong code by mistake, the incorrect applicant type will appear at the top of the screen.  The applicant should select the “Back to Home” button and begin the process again, by reentering the correct Service Code. If the applicant proceeds with the process under the incorrect code, the pre-enrollment and/or results cannot be transferred to another state agency and the applicant will have to start the process over and pay for the background check again. 
     
  2. Payment - The applicant will pay a fee of $22.60 for the fingerprint service and to secure an unofficial copy of the Criminal History Record. Major Credit Cards as well as Money orders or cashier’s checks payable to MorphoTrust will be accepted on site for those applicants who are required to pay individually. No cash transactions or personal checks are allowed. 

    IDEMIA has also established a payment option for fingerprinting services for entities interested in paying the applicant’s fee. This new option provides a payment ‘coupon’ that the entity will provide to each applicant for use. Each coupon is unique and may only be used one time. Account applications must be completed prior to the applicant visiting the fingerprint site. The authorized representative must complete the account application.  To establish a billing account, visit the website https://www.identogo.com/locations/pennsylvania and download an application. 
     
  3. Fingerprint Locations  – After registration, the applicant proceeds to the fingerprint site of their choice for fingerprinting. The location of the fingerprint sites and days and hours of operation for each site are posted on IDEMIA's website at https://uenroll.identogo.com. The location of fingerprint sites may change over time; applicants are encouraged to confirm the site location nearest to their location. PDE encourages entities where access to the fingerprint location is more than 25 miles away to contact IDEMIA and suggest areas where another closer site could be established.
     
  4. Fingerprinting - At the fingerprint site the Enrollment Agents (EA) manages the fingerprint collection process. The fingerprint transaction begins when the EA reviews the applicant’s qualified State or Federal photo ID before processing the applicant’s transaction. A list of approved ID type may be found on the IDEMIA website at https://uenroll.identogo.com . Applicants will not be processed if they cannot produce an acceptable photo ID. After the identity of the applicant has been established, all ten fingers are scanned to complete the process. The entire fingerprint capture process should take no more than three to five minutes.
     
  5. Report Access – For the public or private school or higher education institution to access the official report via the electronic system, applicants must present their UEID to the hiring entity (as shown on the receipt provided after fingerprint capture). This process allows an applicant to provide multiple potential employers with their UEID, as the report is linked to the UEID number and not assigned to a specific school. If an applicant has lost their receipt or needs to confirm UEID, the applicant may visit the UEP website (https://uenroll.identogo.com/ ) and simply check status of their file by providing alternate personal information. Applicants will enter their personal information after clicking in the lower portion of that screen to obtain their receipt with the UEID.

    Applicants will receive an unofficial copy of their report.  However, the school is required to review the official CHRI online and print a file copy of the CHRI if the applicant is hired by the school or their contractor, or if the applicant is approved for student teaching. 

INQUIRIES:
More information regarding fingerprinting locations and the process for obtaining an FBI fingerprint based background check report may be found at:  https://uenroll.identogo.com..
 
Applicants with questions may contact PDE at (717) 783-3750 or RA-PDE-SchoolService@pa.gov .
 
Fingerprint Services Customer Service Call Center: 1-844-321-2101.
 
 4. PDE 6004

Availability of new PDE Form for Employees to Report Section 111(e) Offenses to School Administrators.

A new law includes an important mechanism to help ensure that current school employees, who may not have been subject to a previous background check, are now required to provide assurances that they have not been previously arrested or convicted of Section 111(e) offense. Accordingly, under Act 24, all current school employees are required to complete and return to their school administrator or other person responsible for school employment decisions (the School Administrator) a form developed by PDE to report prior arrests or convictions for any offense listed in Section 111(e). This form (PDE-6004) is now available on this page (link for PDF Arrest or Conviction Report)

5. ACT 168 
 

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 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.

 
 
 
6. Tuberculin Testing of School Personnel
 
The Pennsylvania Public School Code, Section 1418(b) requires that school personnel be tested for TB. School personnel to be tested include employees and independent contractors who provide direct services to students on behalf of a school, including but not limited to teachers, nurses, administrators, physicians, dentists, dental hygienists, custodians, janitors, cooks, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, librarians, psychologists, audiologists and counselors, and student teachers and volunteers. The Department of Health defines "direct services" as those persons in direct contact with students 10 or more hours/week. The law does not contain a provision to allow modifications for school staff/volunteers. They must be tested "prior to working for the school."  The person shall provide to the school a form that shows the TB test was administered within three months prior to the date the school receives the form.
 

For additional information, please contact:
Denise Wolfgang | Administrative Assistant
Pennsylvania Department of Education - School Services Office
333 Market Street | Harrisburg, PA 17126-0333
Phone: 717.783.3750
dwolfgang@pa.gov | www.education.state.pa.us
 
 
 


 
 
 
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