Chicago: 128 Public Schools Employees, Including 9 Teachers, Ousted Over Background Checks


Nine teachers are among 128 Chicago Public Schools employees ousted after background checks.

124 more employees remain barred from work because they haven’t submitted fresh fingerprints for an updated background check yet.

Universal background checks plus a 10-day waiting period are desperately needed.

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Chicago Tribune:

Nearly 130 Chicago Public Schools employees have been terminated, recommended for dismissal or simply resigned amid scrutiny following an enormous review of worker backgrounds prompted by a Tribune investigation this year.

That group of employees includes nine teachers, 35 people classified as classroom aides and an unspecified number of people the district lists as substitute or hourly workers, according to CPS. In addition, 124 employees are still barred from work because they have not submitted fresh fingerprints for an updated district background check.

More than 130 school volunteers also have been dismissed or resigned under review, as have 184 vendors employed by companies that do business with CPS. Roughly 150 of the vendors were custodial staff — and most were removed because they did not provide “sufficient information” after CPS asked about their background check results.

The Tribune’s investigation revealed in June that ineffective background checks sometimes exposed CPS students to educators with criminal convictions and arrests for sex crimes against children. In response, the district announced what it called an “unprecedented step to recheck all employees” prior to the start of this school year, as well as additional measures to protect children.

The district now says the vast majority of more than 68,000 school employees, vendors and volunteers have been cleared for duty. Yet the updated statistics recently released to the Tribune show that CPS has also moved to part ways with hundreds of workers, vendors and volunteers, even as officials continue to review newly obtained information on hundreds of other adults to determine whether they should be allowed into schools.

Twenty-seven coaches, plus a group of 350 vendors and volunteers, still cannot work in schools after their background checks uncovered information that prompted a closer district review of their personal history. More

The Tribune’s sex abuse investigation led Chicago Public Schools to do new background checks on everybody. So far, nearly 130 employees, including 9 teachers, have been fired, resigned or are being fired over issues the checks uncovered. 

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