Getting a teaching job with a DUI?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Sunny Teacher, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. Sunny Teacher

    Sunny Teacher Rookie

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    My boyfriend has gone back to school for Elementary Education. A couple years ago though he got a DUI. This was a misdemeanor, not a felony. I'm wondering how this will affect his chances of being hired as a teacher. Obviously a DUI will be frowned up, but will it completely ruin his chances? Do you know teachers who have a DUI and are teaching? He's learned from his mistake, but will the consequences be forever?
     
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  3. michelleann27

    michelleann27 Cohort

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    Wow, I do know in Mississippi they have fingerprinting and run your background. I know in security and teaching that if you have a record of any kind you can not teach or do security work. I am not sure about Arizona I would check it out before he goes to all that trouble. I would call the super. of the district and see.
     
  4. Sunny Teacher

    Sunny Teacher Rookie

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    Arizona does run a fingerprint clearance. I also know though that Arizona is in need of teachers. I'm hoping a one time (very stupid) slip up won't ruin his chances of becoming a teacher.
     
  5. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

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  6. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Texas is about to start doing a finger print check (if they haven't already for the new teachers). However, I had to interview my superintendent for one of my grad courses this past Spring, and we talked about this. He said that they look at the overall record, and take everything into consideration. If it was several years ago, and it was only one infraction, and everything else seemed good, then it would still allow the hire. However, if it was a pretty recent infraction (within the last year or so), or if there seemed to be some sort of ongoing pattern, he would be hesitant to make the job offer.
     
  7. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    They've already started. I had to be fingerprinted in July before they would even process my application for my certificate.
     
  8. New3rdTeacher

    New3rdTeacher Comrade

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    I know in Nevada they do so many fingerprintings, I really wanted to know why I had to fingerprint so many times, they don't change gosh darnet! :)
     
  9. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    I don't think your boyfriend should count on the fact Arizona presently is in need of teachers to have districts overlook DUI's. I think a frank discussion with his professors and/or a local principal would be helpful in really determining if this will be a problem.

    On a side note, if you read these boards long enough, you will find the teacher shortage and teacher need might not be as valid as you and your boyfriend have been lead to believe.

    Good Luck
     
  10. runnerss

    runnerss Comrade

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    I had to have a finger print check when I got my certification 4 years ago. :)
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    As INteacher suggested, there's not a real teacher shortage in most areas (read the job seekers forum). In many districts there are HUNDREDS of resumes for every one opening. Districts can afford to be selective-

    The DUI could present a huge stumblng block for your bf. Defintiely follow INteacher's advice to talk to his professors, etc... Is there any chance of getting his record expunged? It's an unfortunate circumstance and one any one of us who stops for a glass of wine after work could fall into and I have empathy for your bf.
     
  12. KDS

    KDS Companion

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    Yep! finger printing in TX.

    I would suggest that you/boyfriend call one of the area teacher unions. They helped me out with my legal problems. Even though i am not a member right now, they gave me information that i needed.
     
  13. sue35

    sue35 Habitué

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    I know a teacher who had a DUI in California and he had no trouble getting a job there. It is a different state but it offers some hope to you.
     
  14. alilisa

    alilisa Habitué

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    In Mn, you can still teach if you have a DUI on your record. They will however not let you drive the school vehicles.
     
  15. Sunny Teacher

    Sunny Teacher Rookie

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    Thanks everyone. I will definitely check out the past threads. I know a lot of areas don't need teachers, but I'm pretty sure AZ is still one that needs them.
     
  16. flywild

    flywild Guest

    Sep 28, 2008

    Reporting DUI to school district

    :blush:My situation is embarrassing but here it is:

    I was hired a few years ago with a DUI that was a year old. I have a good work record but was arrested a few months ago with a second. It turned out to be a blessing in some ways since my life has improved 10 fold. I have been told by a teachers union that PSC does not require me to report it to them. Am I required to report it to my school district? My attorney says under no circumstances should I disclose.

    Does anyone have any idea what is the right thing to do????
     
  17. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    IF you are not required to report it, don't. Do get your life in order though- you have been very lucky to have escaped so far relatively unscathed (and without hurting others in the process).
     
  18. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    Can I teach with 2 DUIs on my record?

    My question involves labor and employment law for the state of: California and Nevada

    Can I teach with 2 DUIs on my record?

    Hello everyone, I hope you are well.

    Here is what I am going through right now.

    I received a DUI 7 years ago. And another one about 4 months ago.

    I feel horrible, so please spare me the "soap box" comments. Long story short, I have completely renounced alcohol from my life (even though I rarely drank). In both cases, I was the only one involved, and the BAC was low. Really low.

    Now, do you think it at all possible that I might find a teaching job? I plan to work with inner city children. I still have yet to get my credential/masters, and I currently substitute teach. I do have several years of experience working as an instructional assistant as well. I have a strong passion for teaching and I truly enjoy doing what I do. Does anyone know if TFA will hire someone with two duis?

    I appreciate your feedback. Thank you in advance.
     
  19. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    I won't soapbox, but you do show a pattern of not learning from past mistakes (and making excuses). I would confirm with the district you wish to be hired in if they will hire you with multiple DUI's.
     
  20. bros

    bros Phenom

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    I'd wait until you were a year out from the DUI before applying for teaching jobs, just to show that you truly are remorseful. So get your credential/MAT, that should take like 2 years, then you'll be two years away from your DUI, and two years closer to when you can drive a car again. You'll never be able to get your record expunged with two DUIs, but since you acknowledge it was an issue, you have sworn off alcohol for the rest of your life, that you are an alcoholic, you are repentant.
     
  21. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    Don't drink and drive! .... I've had friends (yes, plural) killed by drunk drivers.......... :hugs:
     
  22. daisycakes

    daisycakes Companion

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    I honestly don't think there is any chance in hell you will ever find a teaching job with two duis. I strongly suggest you look into alternate careers now. Not only do you look like an alcoholic to potential employers, but you are showing what many consider bad character and, in education, character counts. I know a tenured teacher in my school was fired for getting a DUI. He was like 60 and it was his first offense.
     
  23. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    I understand

    Thank you all for your comments, especially bros.

    I am remorseful and I am not making excuses. I recognize what I did was against the law, but I wasn't out-of-control drunk. I won't go into detail, but just know that I was at .09 both times on the BAC test. And both times occurred at checkpoints. I understand your quick need to judge, but you don't know me. So, don't. Again, I haven't had a drink ever since, and I don't plan on drinking again, it's just not worth it.

    I've heard of several excellent teachers who have had 1 and/or 2 DUIs on their records. Do you guys know of any? I think waiting until after my credentialing program is over is a worth while idea. Thank you Bros!

    Thanks again for all your advice.
     
  24. bros

    bros Phenom

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    The amount you blew over doesn't matter - you still drove drunk. Are you a part of an organization like AA? That might help allay some concerns future employers may have, but not all. Your best shot might be in a parochial school - religions preach forgiveness.

    I'd also suggest that you call your state department of education and see if it is even possible for you to do student teaching/get a license with two DUIs on your record.
     
  25. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Sorry, you aren't making excuses?

    I know you actually asked for advice about obtaining a teaching job, but many school districts still require you to sign a morality clause, so you need to do research to find the best place for you to find a job.

    I hope you are serious about not drinking again.
     
  26. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Connoisseur

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    They didn't just start. I have been teaching nearly 10 years and was fingerprinted.
     
  27. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    Right

    You're right, it doesn't matter how high my BAC was. I should have never even thought about driving, no matter how sober I may have thought I was - let alone twice.

    After reading the clause setup by the state educational board, I'm pretty sure non-violent Misdemeanors are not terms for denial of a teaching certificate (the university will take my money). Getting a job with 2 duis however, that's another story. I would have to explain myself in front of a panel I'm sure.

    Private/religious schools - good idea. I've thought about it. I've also thought about teaching over seas.

    AA is something that I frequent, since my second one. Honestly, it helps.

    I know background checks are inevitable, and rightfully so.

    I've also heard of principals who have had 2 DUIs and still practice, and later become teachers again.

    I guess a big part of me just doesn't want to give up; I just hope it can become a reality.

    Thanks again for all of your insight. It is helpful, more than you can imagine.
     
  28. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Depends on the district.

    My district does background checks/fingerprinting and plenty of teachers have DUIs.
     
  29. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    This depends on the district where you are applying to. My Union would not allow the district to fire a teacher over their first DUI. Where was the Union in your colleague's situation?

    In many large districts, like mine, the district does the fingerprinting/background checks and it is a pass/fail thing. As long as you don't have any convictions for child abuse or neglect, you pass. Simple as that. These results are not shared with the Admin who do the actual hiring at the school level because once you have passed, you have passed.
     
  30. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    No need to explain or justify yourself to internet strangers. These perfect people will judge you anyway - as they preach to you with their good intentions ... :rolleyes:

    Good luck on finding a job!
     
  31. bros

    bros Phenom

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    The P's were most likely already employed at the time they had the DUIs - it's difficult to fire someone when they can claim alcoholism and if they enter a treatment program. It's easy not to hire someone with that on their record.

    Good thing it's two misdemeanors - the third is a felony in most areas, even at a 0.09.
     
  32. LisaLisa

    LisaLisa Companion

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    So time wise you are looking at less than a year since your last one. That is significant. Remorse, AA meetings or not, the experience is too recent. If you were applying for a job now then I would say your chances of getting a job would be altered by your DUI's. The last DUI should be in the past - at the very least a year and possibly two.

    The other thing to remember is that even though you are calling them "non-violent" misdemeanors, you were driving a car under the influence. If you had hit someone then it would be another story. Be careful about the language you use in describing your experiences. It might be the correct legal term but it comes across as indifferent especially when you want to be in charge of children everyday. Just choose your words carefully and continue to do so. This situation will probably haunt you for the rest of your life.

    You are not alone in that regard. I've known teachers with a wide range of skeletons in their closets. Most of the time those skeletons stay hidden. It might be family issues or past jobs. In all cases those experiences were years before. It truly comes down to what kind of life you live and how you deal with your past.

    If you are determined to get a teaching job you will. It may not be your first pick or where you want to live but it will happen. Take care of yourself and most importantly, don't drive tired or under the influence of any potentially altering medication ever. Ever. You had two chances. You will not get a get out of jail free card the next time.

    Good luck.
     
  33. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I think it would be extremely hard to find a teaching job with two DUIs. Maybe you could get hired with one if it was a long time ago, you showed you had taken steps to correct the problem, and you were willing to work in less desirable districts. I'm not trying to be mean, just honest with you. I feel that I'm far more sympathetic to those with DUIs than many other posters here. I think most professional adults who drink think nothing of having a couple of drinks at happy hour or dinner and then driving home afterwards, but if you were stopped at a checkpoint that could be enough to put you over the limit. I don't think people always realize that DUIs don't always just go to people that are actually drunk and driving recklessly. I had a friend get a DUI after having two drinks at happy hour a couple of years ago. Thankfully, she's not a teacher so it didn't impact her employment, but it was still extremely costly and life altering for her. Since then, I do not drink at all unless I'm taking public transportation (so basically, I'll drink at a night out downtown because I take the light rail, but I never drink at happy hour, dinner, or at someone's house unless I'm staying over). People always look at me like I have 3 heads because they think nothing of having just a couple of drinks and driving- but DUIs could happen to anyone! That said, even I would consider 2 to be a huge red flag. Knowing how much even 1 can mess up your life, the fact that you drank and drove again after that experience suggests a much bigger problem to me. Again, not trying to be mean, just honest. Since you haven't started a teaching program yet and haven't invested anything, it's a good time to choose a different path.
     
  34. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    Thank you

    Thank you for your comments.

    You're right. I do need to be careful with my language, I can see how someone might get the wrong idea.

    I think it best to wait a while before applying for a job in my chosen career-path - perhaps after my credential/masters is received.

    Thank you for your kind words, and I wish you all the best.
     
  35. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    Not Sure

    First of all, thank you for being honest with me, and I don't think you are being mean.

    I don't mind working with inner city children located in districts where most teachers wouldn't want to teach. That's what I want to do!

    As far as seeing a patter because of my second DUI. Look, I understand the implications of seeing a second charge years after. What I am hoping for is that the hiring committee will consider my positive experiences and attributes over my two mistakes. Granted, just because I have two, it doesn't mean I hadn't done it a million times before right? But, just because someone may have only 1 DUI, it doesn't mean they haven't done it tons of times afterwards either.

    I think the time between the last event and the application makes a difference.

    I know there are teachers with 2, and even some other charges.

    Not to say what I did wasn't wrong... I know I was wrong, believe me, I should have never even touched my keys. If I could take it back I would. This has truly opened my eyes.

    I know I have become a stronger person because of these experiences. It may have been a blessing in disguise.

    Thanks again for your input, it really helps.
     
  36. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    I'm going to keep my personal opinions to myself and just state facts here.

    You are in California. If you are in southern California, you have almost no chance of getting hired. Inner city or not. (This could possibly be different in the very rough areas of LA, especially at charters in those areas.) It is VERY, VERY hard to get a teaching job in southern California for anyone. If the district finds ANY reason not to hire you, they won't.

    If you are in other areas of CA or in NV, things might be different.

    My point - area makes a BIG difference.
     
  37. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Agreed...wholeheartedly. I am not in So Cal (I live in the Central Valley), but it holds true here, too.
     
  38. bros

    bros Phenom

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    The difference between you and those teachers you know are that they already had a job and (most likely) tenure at the time of the convictions - they had proven their worth to the district and had demonstrated previously that they were not a liability to the school or a detriment to the education of the students.

    Just because a school is inner city or "is a place people don't want to teach" doesn't mean they will hire the first person to walk through the door, because they know they are a tough school.

    Perhaps try the military before/after your masters, stay in for a few years, then go into teaching? Although they might reject you, given your two DUIs. Basically you need to make yourself look like you have acted like a saint every single day since the two DUIs.
     
  39. teachmeplease

    teachmeplease New Member

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    Thanks

    Yep. That's one of my concerns. Will I be hired.

    I know of teachers who were hired with two duis on their records, but it's not always the same for everyone. Are you saying I won't be hired at all?
     
  40. bros

    bros Phenom

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    It'll be difficult - you will need to have a lot of exemplary qualities to stand out over those without DUIs. But during interviews, you need to mention the DUIs, so they don't get halfway through the hiring process after loving your interview, get the background check back, and they see two DUIs.
     
  41. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    No one here can tell you if you will get hired. The best thing for you to do is research the different districts that you might be interested in and see what they tell you.

    Good luck.
     

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