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Posted on: August 22, 2021 | by: admin
Because teachers have the responsibility of the care, custody, and control of students, teachers in Ohio are held to a high standard, which means a criminal record of any kind can be detrimental to employment opportunities that you pursue in the education field. The Ohio Department of Education requires that teaching candidates go through an extensive BCI background check and self-report any infractions from the past. A teacher who has been convicted of a crime in Ohio must disclose any and all charges, both sealed and unsealed convictions.
While the ODE has the authority to question applicants about sealed convictions, the ruling on an application for licensure with expunged convictions may look more favorable than convictions that have not been sealed.
The state of Ohio has listed several convictions that prevent the ODE from issuing or maintaining a teaching license for individuals who have pled guilty or have been found guilty of these offenses. They are listed as offenses “not eligible for rehabilitation”, which means if you have one of these convictions, a teaching career in Ohio is not possible. These are typically convictions for major criminal offenses.
Outside of the “absolute bars”, Ohio Expungement statutes are quite forgiving. Felonies, misdemeanors, and even vacated/dismissed charges are all eligible for expungement. OH HB1 drastically expanded the eligibility for convictions, which after being granted by the court, means these convictions will not show up on the background check. Since Ohio requires that teachers disclose any criminal convictions, it is a good idea to have any criminal records expunged and then disclose those sealed conviction(s) on your teaching license application, as sealed by an order of the court.
The other benefit to a record expungement is that your past will be hidden from public records, even the public records regarding offenses in the Ohio Department of Education licensing file. This means a parent or guardian will not find references to past criminal convictions on a standard background search or reviewing the ODE online information about a teacher. This is important to maintain your credibility with parents and the students that you teach.
Our team has nearly 30 years of experience helping teaching professionals put embarrassing convictions in the past. If you have a conviction that has been fully discharged by the court, have completed the terms of the court order, and have met the waiting period requirements, you may be eligible to have those convictions sealed from public records.
Get started with our free online eligibility test to see if you are eligible for an expungement in Ohio and never worry about a background check ruining your teaching employment options.