More teacher checks approved

The House voted 127-1 Thursday to expand schools’ investigation of potential teachers.

Bill sponsor Rep. Karla Bigham, DFL-Cottage Grove, said that her bill requires schools to work with the Board of Teaching to obtain disciplinary information on all teacher applicants.

It orders schools to determine whether disciplinary action was taken against the teaching applicant based on sexual misconduct or attempted sexual misconduct with a student.

The bill goes further than a similar law enacted last year that affected coaching applicants.

"It will strengthen background checks on teachers without creating a new crime," Bigham said.

A similar bill awaits Senate action.

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