Criminal Records and Registry Checks

  • In an attempt to help protect our school children from abuse and exploitation, Vermont law (16 V.S.A. sections 251-260) requires/authorizes criminal background investigations (including a fingerprint supported FBI check and a check with the Vermont Criminal Information Center) and registry checks with the Agency of Human Services (AHS), the Adult Protective Services, and the Child Abuse registry Unit, on the following individuals:

    • All school employees (including substitutes, temporary and as-needed employees) being recommended for employment;
    • Student teachers;
    • Contractors and employees of contractors who have unsupervised contact with school children; and,
    • School volunteers (if required by the district). 

    Said individuals will be required to provide fingerprints, releases and other information necessary to conduct background investigations. 

    The cost of the procedures shall be the responsibility of the individual for whom the background check is being requested. 

    The process outlined below must be completed prior to the commencement of services within our district.  All offers of employment (or service agreements) shall be conditioned upon an acceptable background check. Although employment/service with the district may commence prior to the completion of the background check process, continued employment/services with the district shall be contingent upon a satisfactory background check. Below is the process that must be completed:

    1.  Meet with Human Resources:

    Contact EWSD Human Resources at 857-7038 to schedule an appointment to complete the required background check paperwork. Please bring the following with you when you meet with Human Resources:

    • Payment to Essex Westford School District (EWSD) for $13.25, to cover the cost of the Criminal Record Check processing. Credit and/or debit cards are not accepted. Exact cash required or personal checks.
      • The cost to cover the fingerprint supported background ceck for volunteers is $ 11.25. 
    • Acceptable identification (e.g. PHOTO Driver’s license, Passport, etc.) to enable us to verify your identity and signature.

    2.  Obtain Fingerprints:

    After you meet with EWSD Human Resources to complete the required paperwork, make an appointment to have your fingerprints taken at a designated Identification Center. There is a $25.00 charge (cash only) for the fingerprints, which is paid directly to the Identification Center when fingerprinted. You must bring two forms of identification with you in order to be fingerprinted. You will also need to bring your completed Fingerprint Authorization Certificate, which is provided to you when you meet with Human Resources. Fingerprints will not be taken without the certificate.

    For a list of Identification Centers, acceptable forms of identification and other information about the fingerprinting process (e.g. expectations at the Identification Centers, acceptable forms of ID, acceptable prints, tips for good prints, etc.), please visit the Vermont Criminal Information Center (VCIC) website at

    3.  Return Fingerprint Receipt:

    While at the Identification Center, the fingerprinting officer will give you a Fingerprint Receipt. Please drop off or mail that receipt to Human Resources at the following address: Essex Westford School District at 51 Park Street, Essex Jct., VT 05452.

    Criminal Records Check Previously Completed

    If you have recently completed a fingerprint supported FBI Criminal Records Check process with another Vermont School District within the past year, you may not have to repeat the fingerprint supported criminal record check process above if:

    • the record still exists;
    • you agree to sign a release, and;
    • the original holder agrees to release a copy of the record to us.

    The above rule only applies to the fingerprint supported FBI criminal records check.  The VCIC check and all registry checks shall be redone prior to service within our district.


    Notice of Results

    In the event a notice of a criminal record is received, the individual shall be provided a copy of the record along with a notice of their appeal rights with VCIC: Within 30 days of receiving the results of the record check, the individual shall have the right to appeal the findings to the Vermont Criminal Information Center, Department of Public Safety, 103 South Main Street, Waterbury, Vermont, 05671-2101.

Background Check Documents