More new laws! Let’s focus on educator misconduct

The big news this legislative session was HB 3 and its radical rework of school finance. But that lengthy piece of legislation also addressed educator misconduct.  Here are four highlights:

1. It requires TEA to create a “do not hire” registry available through an Internet portal.  People on the registry will not be eligible for employment with a school district, an ESC, an SSA, a DOI or any kind of charter school.  If they are already working for such an entity, they must be discharged.

2.  There are three categories of employees who will be listed on the registry: 1) a person not eligible for educator certification due to a criminal record or criminal history; 2) a person whose certification or permit has been revoked by SBEC based on certain types of misconduct; and 3) a person determined by the Commissioner to have engaged in certain types of misconduct.

3.  Private schools will have access to the registry also.

4.  Schools will now be required to make a report to TEA about a non-certified employee who is terminated or resigned when there is evidence of certain types of misconduct—the same standard as applies to certified employees.  The timelines and standards for these reports are the same as those that were imposed for certified employees under SB 7 from the 2017 session. The only difference is that certified employees get reported to SBEC and non-certified employees get reported to TEA.   HB 3 includes due process protections for the accused employee. They will be given notice of the allegations and will have an opportunity to have a hearing.


Tomorrow: Toolbox Tuesday!!