4:175-AP1 Criminal Offender Notification Laws; Screening
Laws Protecting Students on School Grounds
The following list describes laws protecting students on school grounds from individuals convicted of serious crimes:
- A child sex offender is prohibited from being present on school property or loitering within 500 feet of school property when persons under the age of 18 are present unless specifically permitted by statute. 720 ILCS 5/11-9.3. See School Board policies 4:175, Convicted Child Sex Offender; Screening; Notifications; 8:030, Visitors to and Conduct on School Property; and administrative procedure 8:030-AP1, Definition of Child Sex Offender.
- Law enforcement must notify schools of offenders who reside or are employed in the county. See: (a) Sex Offender Community Notification Law, 730 ILCS 152/, and (b) Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Community Notification Law, 730 ILCS 154/75-154/105. These laws are hereafter referred to as “offender notification laws.” See also policy 4:175, Convicted Child Sex Offender; Screening; Notifications.
The School Code 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9, 5/21B-5 and 5/21B-80 lists criminal offenses that disqualify an individual from District employment if the individual was convicted. 105 ILCS 5/20-21.9 requires any person hired by the District to submit to a fingerprint-based criminal history records check through (a) the Ill. Dept. of State Police (ISP) for an individual’s Criminal History Records Information (CHRI), and (b) the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) national crime information databases. The law also requires a school district to initially check two publicly-available Illinois offender databases for each applicant being considered for hire and, if hired, repeatedly at least once every five years that an individual remains employed by the District, which are (a) the Statewide Sex Offender Registry, www.isp.state.il.us/sor/, and (b) the Statewide Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registry, www.isp.state.il.us/cmvo/. Obtaining the results of the fingerprint-based criminal history records check and review of the database registries is a complete criminal history records check as required by the School Code. See policy 5:030, Hiring Process and Criteria; administrative procedure 5:030-AP2, Investigations; and ISBE’s non-regulatory guidance document, Criminal History Records Information (CHRI) Checks for Certified and Non-certified School Personnel, at: www.isbe.net/Documents/guidance_chr.pdf
- Note: A District may also check the National Sex Offender Public Website, nsopw.gov/; however, the same information will likely appear in the information furnished by the FBI.
- The provisions in the School Code described above also apply to employees of persons or firms holding contracts with a school district who have direct, daily contact with students. 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9(f). See administrative procedures 4:060-AP3, Criminal History Records Check of Contractor Employees; 5:030-AP2, Investigations.
- Being charged with attempting to commit, conspiring to commit, soliciting, or committing any offense listed in 105 ILCS 5/21B-80(b-5) results in the automatic suspension or revocation of the individual’s license until the individual’s criminal charges are adjudicated through a court of competent jurisdiction. If the individual is acquitted, his or her license or application shall be immediately reinstated.
- Conviction of an offense listed in 105 ILCS 5/21B-80(c) results in the automatic suspension or revocation of the individual’s license. Conviction of an offense listed in 105 ILCS 5/21B-80(b), depending upon whether the individual’s sentence has been satisfactorily completed and seven years have passed since that date, may result in automatic suspension or revocation of the individual’s license.
- The offender notification laws require law enforcement to ascertain whether a juvenile sex offender or violent offender against youth is enrolled in a school and, if so, to provide a copy of the registration form to the Building Principal and any guidance counselor designated by him or her. This registration form must be kept separately from any and all school records maintained on behalf of the juvenile sex offender. See Board policy 4:175, Convicted Child Sex Offender; Screening; Notifications.
Receipt of Information from Law Enforcement
Offender Notification Laws: The Superintendent or designee shall notify the local law enforcement official or county sheriff that he or she is the District’s official contact person for purposes of the offender notification laws. The Superintendent and/or Building Principal may at any time request information from law enforcement officials regarding sex offenders or violent offenders against youth.
The Superintendent will provide Building Principals and other supervisors with a copy of all lists received from law enforcement officials containing the names and addresses of sex offenders and violent offenders against youth.
The Building Principal or designee shall provide the lists to staff members in his or her building on a need-to-know basis, but in any event:
- A teacher will be told if one of his or her students, or a student’s parent/guardian, is on a list.
- The school counselor, nurse, social worker, or other school service personnel will be told if a student or the parent/guardian of a student for whom he or she provides services is on a list.
No person receiving a list shall provide it to any other person, except as provided in these procedures, State law, or as authorized by the Superintendent. Requests for information should be referred to the local law enforcement officials or State Police.
Juvenile Delinquency Adjudication Notifications: The Superintendent or designee shall contact the Juvenile Division of the County State’s Attorney Office(s) having jurisdiction over the District’s school(s) to discuss how the State’s Attorney shall inform the Superintendent or designee of any students adjudicated as delinquent minors for offenses that would be felonies and/or certain weapons offenses under the Criminal Code of 2012. 705 ILCS 405/5-901(8). The Superintendent and/or designee(s) shall ensure the dissemination of such information is limited to the Building Principal and any guidance counselor designated by the Building Principal. Id.
Informing Staff Members and Parents/Guardians About the Law
Building Principals or their designees shall inform parents/guardians about the availability of information concerning sex offenders during school registration and, if feasible, during parent-teacher conferences. Information should be distributed about the Statewide Sex Offender Registry, www.isp.state.il.us/sor/, and the Statewide Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registry, www.isp.state.il.us/cmvo/. Information may also be included in the Student Handbook. See the Sex Offender Community Notification Law, 730 ILCS 152/, and exhibit 4:175-AP1, Criminal Offender Notification Laws; Screening; 4:175-E1, Informing Parents/Guardians About Offender Community Notification Laws.
Requests for additional information shall be referred to local law enforcement officials.
Screening Individuals Who Are Likely to Have Contact with Students at School or School Events
The law is silent with regard to screening volunteers and individuals in the proximity of a school. Screening is not the same as the School Code’s requirement to perform a fingerprint-based criminal history records check through (a) the ISP for an individual’s Criminal History Records Information (CHRI), and (b) the FBI’s national crime information databases. 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9.
Screening involves checking an individual’s name and address against the: (1) Ill. Sex Offender Registry, www.isp.state.il.us/sor/, and (2) the Violent Offender Against Youth Registry maintained by the State Police, www.isp.state.il.us/cmvo/. 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9(a-5), (a-6).
There are five categories listed below of individuals with the potential to have contact with students at school or at school events.
- For employees and student teachers, the Superintendent or Building Principal(s) perform the following tasks:
b. Screen the individual’s name and address against the: (1) Ill. Sex Offender Registry, isp.state.il.us/sor/, and (2) the Violent Offender Against Youth Registry maintained by the State Police, www.isp.state.il.us/cmvo/. 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9(a-5), (a-6). This screening must be done for applicants being considered for hire and, if hired, repeatedly at least once every five years that an individual remains employed by the District.
c. Review the lists of sex offenders and violent offenders against youth as the lists are received from law enforcement. If a match is found, the Superintendent immediately contacts the local police officials to confirm or disprove the match. The Superintendent immediately notifies the Board if a match is confirmed. The Board President will contact the Board Attorney and the Board will take the appropriate action to comply with State law that may include terminating the individual’s employment.
d. May request the individual to authorize a clearance of his or her name through the Ill. Dept. Of Children and Family Services (DCFS) CANTS system. This check documents that the person does not have an indicated report or record on DCFS’ registry of child abuse and/or neglect. 325 ILCS 5/11.1(a)(11) and (c). Clearances must be requested using the DCFS form at dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=48125.
If an indicated report by DCFS or by a child welfare agency of another jurisdiction is found, the Board must consider the individual’s status as a condition of employment. Contact the Board Attorney for guidance.
e. Notify the State Superintendent of Education in writing within 10 business days when a fingerprint- based criminal history records check returns a pending criminal charge against a license holder for an office set forth in 105 ILCS 5/21B-80.
f. Notify the State Superintendent of Education in writing within 15 business days when a fingerprint-based criminal history records check returns a conviction of a crime set forth in 105 ILCS 5/21B-80 or when publicly-available Illinois offender databases checks find a registration.
2. For students doing field or clinical experience other than student teaching, the Superintendent or Building Principal(s):
a. May require the same fingerprint-based criminal history records check required of student teachers. The cost of this check will be reimbursed by the student seeking the experience.
b. Performs the responsibilities listed in 1. b. & c., above.
3. For volunteers, see 6:250-AP1, Securing and Screening Resource Persons and Volunteers. The Superintendent or Building Principal(s):
a. May require the same fingerprint-based criminal history records check required of student teachers.
b. Performs the responsibilities listed in 1. b. & c., above.
5. For individuals in the proximity of a school or bus stop, the Building Principal(s) review(s) the lists of sex offenders and violent offenders against youth as they are received from law enforcement. The Building Principal or designee shall: (a) notify staff members according to the section of this procedure on Receipt of the Information from Law Enforcement, and (b) attempt to alter school bus stops and the route students travel to and from school in order to avoid contact with an individual on such a list.
Date Amended: August 20, 2014
Date Amended: February 21, 2017
Date Amended: January 21, 2020
Date Amended: December 17, 2020