DC(LEGAL) - EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES

Employment Policy

School District Superintendent

Pre-employment Affidavit

Employee Information

Verification of Employment Eligibility

  1. Within three business days of initial hiring. If the ESC hires an individual for employment for a duration of less than three business days, the ESC must verify employment at the time of hire.
  2. An ESC shall not be deemed to have hired an individual if the individual is continuing in his or her employment and has a reasonable expectation of employment at all times.
  3. When the ESC rehires an individual, the ESC may, in lieu of completing a new I-9, inspect a previously completed I-9 executed within three years of the date of rehire, to determine whether the individual is still eligible to work.
  4. For an individual whose employment authorization expires, not later than the date of expiration.

Social Security Numbers

Exceptions

  1. Any disclosure that is required by federal statute. The United States Internal Revenue Code provides that the social security number issued to an individual for purposes of federal income tax laws shall be used as the identifying number for taxpayers;
  2. Any disclosure to an ESC maintaining a system of records in existence and operating before January 1, 1975, if such disclosure was required under statute or regulation adopted before such date to verify the identity of an individual; or
  3. Any use for the purposes of establishing the identity of individuals affected by any tax, general public assistance, driver's license, or motor vehicle registration law within the ESC's jurisdiction.

Statement of Uses

New Hire Reporting

Deadline

  1. Not later than 20 calendar days after the date the ESC hires the employee; or
  2. In the case of an ESC transmitting reports magnetically or electronically, by two monthly transmissions (if necessary) not less than 12 days nor more than 16 days apart.

Penalties

At-Will Employment

Exception

Dismissal of At-Will Employees

Permissive Reports

Required Reports— Criminal History, Termination, Resignation, and Assessment Instrument

  1. An educator employed by or seeking employment with the ESC, or an applicant or holder of an SBEC certificate, has a criminal record and the ESC obtained information about the educator's criminal record by a means other than the criminal history clearinghouse established by the Texas Department of Public Safety under Government Code 411.0845;
  2. An educator's employment at the ESC was terminated and there is evidence that the educator engaged in misconduct listed below [see Reportable Misconduct, below];
  3. The educator submitted a notice of resignation and there is evidence that the educator engaged in misconduct listed below [see Reportable Misconduct, below]; or
  4. The educator engaged in conduct that violated the assessment instrument security procedures established under Education Code 39.0301.

Reportable Misconduct

  1. Sexually or physically abused a student or minor or engaged in any other illegal conduct with a student or minor;
  2. Possessed, transferred, sold, or distributed a controlled substance, as defined by Health and Safety Code Chapter 481 or by 21 U.S.C. 801 et seq.;
  3. Illegally transferred, appropriated, or expended funds or other ESC property;
  4. Attempted by fraudulent or unauthorized means to obtain or alter any certificate or permit that would entitle the individual to be employed in a position requiring such certificate or permit or to receive additional compensation associated with a position;
  5. Committed a crime, any part of such crime having occurred on school property or at a school-sponsored event; or
  6. Solicited or engaged in sexual conduct or a romantic relationship with a student or minor.

Completion of Investigation

Deadline to Report

Contents of Report

  1. Name and any aliases;
  2. Certificate number, if any, or social security number;
  3. Last known mailing address and home and daytime phone numbers;
  4. All available contact information for any alleged victim or victims;
  5. Name or names and any available contact information of any relevant witnesses to the circumstances requiring the report;
  6. Current employment status of the subject, including any information about proposed termination, notice of resignation, or pending employment actions; and
  7. Involvement by a law enforcement or other agency, including the name of the agency.

Notice

To the Board and Educator

Before Accepting Resignation

Notice to Parent of Educator Misconduct

  1. That the alleged misconduct occurred;
  2. Whether the educator was terminated following an investigation of the alleged misconduct or resigned before completion of the investigation; and
  3. Whether a report was submitted to the State Board for Educator Certification concerning the alleged misconduct.

Sanctions for Failure to Report

Administrative Penalty

Criminal Offense

Immunity

Definitions

"Abuse"

  1. Mental or emotional injury to a student or minor that results in an observable and material impairment in the student's or minor's development, learning, or psychological functioning;
  2. Causing or permitting a student or minor to be in a situation in which the student or minor sustains a mental or emotional injury that results in an observable and material impairment in the student's or minor's development, learning, or psychological functioning;
  3. Physical injury that results in substantial harm to a student or minor, or the genuine threat of substantial harm from physical injury to the student or minor, including an injury that is at variance with the history or explanation given and excluding an accident or reasonable discipline; or
  4. Sexual conduct harmful to a student's or minor's mental, emotional, or physical welfare.

"Reported Criminal History"

"Solicitation of a Romantic Relationship"

  1. Behavior, gestures, expressions, or communications with a student that are unrelated to the educator's job duties and evidence a romantic intent or interest in the student, including statements of love, affection, or attraction. Factors that may be considered in determining the romantic intent of such communications or behavior include:
    1. The nature of the communications;
    2. The timing of the communications;
    3. The extent of the communications;
    4. Whether the communications were made openly or secretly;
    5. The extent that the educator attempts to conceal the communications;
    6. If the educator claims to be counseling a student, SBEC may consider whether the educator's job duties included counseling, whether the educator reported the subject of the counseling to the student's guardians or to the appropriate school personnel, or, in the case of alleged abuse or neglect, whether the educator reported the abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities; and
    7. Any other evidence tending to show the context of the communications between educator and student.
  2. Making inappropriate comments about a student's body, creating or transmitting sexually suggestive photographs or images, or encouraging the student to transmit sexually suggestive photographs or images.
  3. Making sexually demeaning comments to a student.
  4. Making comments about a student's potential sexual performance.
  5. Requesting details of a student's sexual history.
  6. Requesting a date, sexual contact, or any activity intended for the sexual gratification of the educator.
  7. Engaging in conversations regarding the sexual problems, preferences, or fantasies of either party.
  8. Inappropriate hugging, kissing, or excessive touching.
  9. Providing the student with drugs or alcohol.
  10. Violating written directives from school administrators regarding the educator's behavior toward a student.
  11. Suggestions that a romantic relationship is desired after the student graduates, including post-graduation plans for dating or marriage.
  12. Any other acts tending to show that the educator solicited a romantic relationship with the student.

Retirement Discrimination

Retirement System

Notice to TRS

Employment Assistance Prohibited

  1. The matter has been officially closed or the prosecutor or police with jurisdiction over the alleged misconduct has investigated the allegations and notified school officials that there is insufficient information to establish probable cause that the school employee engaged in sexual misconduct regarding a minor or student in violation of the law;
  2. The ESC employee has been charged with and acquitted or otherwise exonerated of the alleged misconduct; or
  3. The case or investigation remains open and there have been no charges filed against, or indictment of, the school employee within four years of the date on which the information was reported to a law enforcement agency.

State Law on Sanctions

  1. The person assists another person in obtaining employment at a school district or open-enrollment charter school, other than by the routine transmission of administrative and personnel files; and
  2. The person knew that the other person has previously engaged in sexual misconduct with a minor or student in violation of the law.

Region III Education Service Center

DC(LEGAL)-ESCA

UPDATE 24

DATE ISSUED: 5/20/2019