Fingerprinting

Chapter 630 of the Laws of 2006

AN  ACT to amend the education law, in relation to authorizing nonpublic and private elementary and secondary schools to apply to  the  commissioner  of education for criminal history record checks on prospective employees,  providing  for  conditional  appointment  of   prospective employees

       Became a law August 16, 2006, with the approval of the Governor.
            Passed by a majority vote, three-fifths being present.

     The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
   bly, do enact as follows:

     Section 1. Paragraph (a) of subdivision  30  of  section  305  of  the education  law,  as added by chapter 180 of the laws of 2000, is amended to read as follows:
     (a) The commissioner, in cooperation with  the  division  of  criminal justice  services  and  in  accordance with all applicable provisions of law, shall promulgate rules and regulations to require the  fingerprint ing of prospective employees, as defined in section eleven hundred twenty-five of this chapter, of school districts, charter schools and boards of  cooperative  educational services and authorizing the fingerprinting of prospective employees of nonpublic and private elementary and secondary schools, and for the use of information derived from searches of the records of the division of criminal justice  services  and  the  federal bureau  of  investigation  based  on  the  use of such fingerprints. The commissioner shall also develop a form  for  use  by  school districts, charter  schools  [and], boards of cooperative educational services, and nonpublic and private elementary and  secondary  schools  in  connection with the submission of fingerprints that contains the specific job title sought  and  any other information that may be relevant to consideration  of the applicant. The commissioner shall also establish a form  for  the recordation  of allegations of child abuse in an educational setting, as required pursuant to section eleven hundred twenty-six of this  chapter.
   No  person who has been fingerprinted pursuant to section three thousand four-b of this chapter or pursuant to section five  hundred  nine-cc  or twelve  hundred  twenty-nine-d  of the vehicle and traffic law and whose fingerprints remain on  file  with  the  division  of  criminal  justice services  shall  be required to undergo fingerprinting for purposes of a new criminal history record check. This subdivision and  the  rules  and regulations  promulgated  pursuant  thereto  shall not apply to a school district within a city with a population of one million or more.
     § 2. The opening paragraph and subparagraph (i) of  paragraph  (b)  of
   subdivision  30 of section 305 of the education law, as added by chapter
   180 of the laws of 2000, are amended to read as follows:
     The commissioner, in cooperation with the division of criminal justice services, shall promulgate a form to be provided to all such prospective employees of school districts, charter schools [and], boards of  cooper ative  educational  services,  and  nonpublic and private elementary and

   EXPLANATION--Matter in italics is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted.

   secondary schools that elect  to  fingerprint  and  seek  clearance  for
   prospective employees that shall:
     (i)  inform the prospective employee that the commissioner is required or authorized to request his or her criminal  history  information  from the  division  of  criminal  justice  services and the federal bureau of investigation and review such information pursuant to this section,  and provide  a  description  of  the  manner in which his or her fingerprint cards will be used upon submission to the division of  criminal justice services;
     §  3. Subparagraph (vii) of paragraph (c) of subdivision 30 of section 305 of the education law, as added by chapter 180 of the  laws  of  2000  and as renumbered by chapter 182 of the laws of 2000, is amended to read  as follows:
     (vii)  been informed that in the event his or her employment is termi nated and such person has not become employed in  the  same  or  another  school  district,  charter school [or], board of cooperative educational services, or nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school  within twelve-months  of  such  termination,  the commissioner shall notify the division of criminal justice services of such termination, and the division of criminal justice services shall destroy the fingerprints of such person. Such person may request that the commissioner notify  the  division  of criminal justice services that his or her fingerprints shall be destroyed prior to the expiration of such twelve month period  in  which case  the  commissioner  shall  notify  the division of criminal justice services and the division shall destroy the fingerprints of such person  promptly upon receipt of the request; and
     §  4.  Paragraph (d) of subdivision 30 of section 305 of the education law, as added by chapter 147 of the laws of 2001, is amended to read  as follows:
     (d)  The commissioner shall develop forms to be provided to all school districts, charter schools  [and],  boards  of  cooperative  educational services,  and  to  all  nonpublic  and private elementary and secondary schools that elect to fingerprint their  prospective  employees,  to  be completed  and signed by prospective employees when conditional appointment or emergency conditional appointment is offered.
     § 5. The education law is amended by adding a new  section  3001-d  to  read as follows:
     § 3001-d. Criminal history record checks and conditional appointments;
   nonpublic and private schools.  1. a. "Employee" shall mean any prospective  employee  of a nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school which requires the fingerprinting of prospective employees  pursuant  to
   this  section,  or  employee  of a contracted service provider or worker placed within such school under a public assistance employment  program, pursuant to title nine-B of article five of the social services law, and consistent  with  the  provisions  of  such  title  for the provision of
   services to such school, its students or employees, directly or  through  contract,  whereby such services performed by such person involve direct  student contact. Any nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school  which elects to submit for review criminal history information  concern-
   ing  prospective employees must do so with respect to each such prospective employee, as defined in this paragraph,  in  accordance  with  this  section.
     b.  "Volunteer"  shall  mean  any  person, other than an employee, who  provides services to a nonpublic  or  private  elementary  or  secondary  school which elects to require the fingerprinting of prospective employ ees pursuant to this section, which involve direct student contact.

     2.  Any  nonpublic  or  private  elementary  or  secondary  school may require, for the purposes of a criminal history record check, the  fingerprinting  of all prospective employees pursuant to section three thousand thirty-five of this article, who do not hold valid clearance pursuant to such section or pursuant to section three thousand four-b of this
   article  or section five hundred nine-cc or twelve hundred twenty-nine-d of the vehicle and traffic law. Prior to initiating  the  fingerprinting  process,  the  prospective employer shall furnish the applicant with the  form described in paragraph (c) of subdivision thirty of  section  three  hundred five of this chapter and shall obtain the applicant's consent to
   the  criminal  history  record  search.  Every set of fingerprints taken  pursuant to this section shall be promptly submitted to the commissioner  for the purposes of clearance for employment.
     3. (a) Any nonpublic or private elementary  or  secondary  school  may  conditionally  appoint a prospective employee. A request for conditional  clearance may be forwarded to the commissioner along with  the  prospective  employee's  fingerprints.  Such  appointment  may be delayed until
   notification by the commissioner that the prospective employee has  been  conditionally  cleared  for  employment  and  shall  terminate  when the  prospective employer is notified of a determination by the  commissioner  to  grant  or deny clearance, provided that if clearance is granted, the
   appointment shall continue and the conditional status shall be  removed.
   Prior  to  commencement of such conditional appointment, the prospective  employer shall obtain a signed  statement  for  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 outside the state.
     (b) Any nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school  may  make  an emergency conditional appointment when an unforeseen emergency vacancy  has  occurred. When such appointment is made, the process for condi-
   tional appointment pursuant to paragraph (a)  of  this  subdivision  may  also  be initiated. Emergency conditional appointment may commence prior  to notification from the commissioner on conditional clearance and shall  terminate when the prospective employer is notified by the commissioner  regarding  conditional clearance, provided that if conditional clearance  is granted, the appointment may continue as a  conditional  appointment.
   Prior  to the commencement of such appointment, the prospective employer  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: (i) a vacancy that occurred less than ten 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 clearance or conditional  clearance;  (ii)  when  no  other qualified person is available to fill the vacancy temporarily; and  (iii)  when  emergency  conditional appointment is necessary to maintain  services which the school is legally required  to  provide  or  services necessary  to  protect  the  health,  education or safety of students or
   staff.
     (c) Each nonpublic or private elementary or  secondary  school,  which elects  to fingerprint prospective employees pursuant to subdivision two of this section, shall develop a policy for the safety of  the  children  who  have  contact  with  an employee holding conditional appointment or
   emergency conditional appointment.

     4. Fees. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to  the  contrary,  the  commissioner  is authorized to charge additional fees to applicants for certificates pursuant to this section in an amount equal to the fees
   established pursuant to law by the division of criminal justice services and  the  federal bureau of investigation for the searches authorized by this section.
     § 6. Subdivision 1 of section 3035 of the education law, as  added  by chapter 180 of the laws of 2000, is amended to read as follows:
     1.  The  commissioner shall submit to the division of criminal justice services two sets of fingerprints of prospective employees as defined in subdivision three of section eleven hundred twenty-five of this  chapter received  from a school district, charter school or board of cooperative educational services and of prospective employees received from  nonpublic  and  private elementary and secondary schools pursuant to title two
   of this chapter, and the division of criminal justice services  processing fee imposed pursuant to subdivision eight-a of section eight hundred thirty-seven  of  the  executive  law and any fee imposed by the federal bureau of investigation. The division of criminal justice  services  and the  federal bureau of investigation shall forward such criminal history record to the commissioner in a timely manner. For the purposes of  this section,  the  term "criminal history record" shall mean a record of all convictions of crimes and any pending criminal charges maintained on  an individual  by the division of criminal justice services and the federal bureau of investigation. All such criminal history records sent  to  the commissioner pursuant to this subdivision shall be confidential pursuant  to  the  applicable  federal  and state laws, rules and regulations, and shall not be published or in any way disclosed to persons other than the commissioner, unless otherwise authorized by law.
     § 7. Subdivision 3 of section 3035 of the education law, as amended by chapter 147 of the laws of 2001, is amended to read as follows:
     3. (a) Clearance. After receipt of a criminal history record from  the division of criminal justice services and the federal bureau of investigation  the  commissioner  shall  promptly notify the appropriate school district,  charter  school  [or],  board  of   cooperative   educational services, or nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school whether the  prospective  employee  to  which such report relates is cleared for employment based upon his or her criminal history. All determinations to grant or deny clearance for employment pursuant to this paragraph  shall
   be  performed  in  accordance  with  subdivision  sixteen of section two hundred ninety-six of the executive law and  article  twenty-three-A of the  correction law. When the commissioner denies a prospective employee clearance for employment, such prospective employee  shall  be  afforded notice  and  the right to be heard and offer proof in opposition to such determination in accordance with the regulations of the commissioner.
     (b) Conditional clearance. When the commissioner  receives  a  request for  a  determination  on  the  conditional  clearance  of a prospective employee, the commissioner, after receipt of a criminal  history  record from  the  division  of criminal justice services, shall promptly notify the prospective employee and the appropriate  school  district,  charter school,  [or] board of cooperative educational services, or nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school that the prospective employee  to
   which  such report relates is conditionally cleared for employment based upon his or her criminal history or that more time is needed to make the determination. If the commissioner determines that more time is  needed, the  notification  shall  include a good faith estimate of the amount of additional time needed. Such notification shall be made  within  fifteen business days after the commissioner receives the prospective employee's fingerprints.  All determinations to grant or deny conditional clearance for employment pursuant to this paragraph shall be performed in  accord ance  with  subdivision sixteen of section two hundred ninety-six of the executive law and article twenty-three-A of the correction law.
     § 8. Subdivision 3 of section 3035 of the education law, as  added  by chapter 180 of the laws of 2000, is amended to read as follows:
     3.  After  receipt  of  a criminal history record from the division of
   criminal justice services and the federal bureau  of  investigation  the commissioner  shall  promptly  notify  the  appropriate school district, charter school [or],  board  of  cooperative  educational  services,  or nonpublic or private elementary or secondary school whether the prospective  employee  to  which  such report relates is cleared for employment based upon his or her criminal history. All determinations to  grant  or deny  clearance  for  employment  pursuant  to this subdivision shall be performed in accordance with subdivision sixteen of section two  hundred
   ninety-six  of  the  executive  law  and  article  twenty-three-A of the correction law. When the  commissioner  denies  a  prospective  employee clearance  for  employment,  such prospective employee shall be afforded notice and the right to be heard and offer proof in opposition  to  such determination in accordance with the regulations of the commissioner.
     §  9.  This act shall take effect on the first of July next succeeding  the date on which it shall have become a law, provided that  the  amend ments to paragraph (d) of subdivision 30 of section 305 of the education law,  made  by  section four of this act shall not affect the expiration  and repeal of such paragraph, and shall expire and  be  deemed  repealed therewith,  provided,  further  that  the amendments to subdivision 3 of  section 3035 of the education law, made by section seven  of  this  act, shall  not  affect  the expiration and reversion of such subdivision and
   shall expire therewith, when upon such date section eight  of  this  act  shall take effect.

   The Legislature of the STATE OF NEW YORK ss:
     Pursuant  to  the authority vested in us by section 70-b of the Public Officers Law, we hereby jointly certify that  this  slip  copy  of  this session law was printed under our direction and, in accordance with such  section, is entitled to be read into evidence.

      JOSEPH L. BRUNO, Temporary President of the Senate  

SHELDON SILVER, Speaker of the Assembly

Last Updated: August 9, 2009