Wednesday, June 11, 2014

New law: DEL background checks may now be used for early learning employees in school settings

Starting on June 12, individuals working in certain early learning settings will no longer have to undergo both the Department of Early Learning (DEL) and Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) background check.

Senate Bill 6093, sponsored by Sen. Christine Rolfes, D-Bainbridge Island, allows these individuals to meet their background check requirements by providing a copy of their DEL background check results to OSPI. This applies to early learning professionals requiring background checks who work in:
  • School districts
  • Educational service districts
  • The State Center for Childhood Deafness and Hearing Loss
  • The State School for the Blind
  • Contractors of the above entities that hire employees

Legislators passed the bill during the 2014 legislative session after recognizing that requiring one individual to undergo two background checks was inefficient. The DEL background check is very comprehensive, and looks at an individual’s criminal history, sexual offender registry and professional licensing history.

Individuals wishing to use their DEL background check to suffice for their OSPI check must request copies of their background check results from DEL, and then send a copy of those results to OSPI. 

To request your background check results, complete a Request for Background Check Results Form and mail it, fax it, or attach a scanned version to an email and send it to the Department of Early Learning.  DEL will mail two copies of the background check results to you and you will need to mail the copy in the sealed envelope to the Fingerprint Records office at OSPI

Federal law does not allow our two agencies to share background results directly, but does allow individuals to share their own background results with other state agencies.

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Department of Early Learning (DEL) is accepting applications for Early Learning Advisory Council vacancies

The Department of Early Learning (DEL) is filling two vacant seats on our Early Learning Advisory Council (ELAC): A representative of a local education agency and a representative of the child care center community.

Members serve two-year terms that expire on June 30 of the second year. ELAC members are expected to attend the majority of the six meetings per year and be prepared to actively participate. Regular ELAC meetings are generally scheduled every other month and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Participants in subcommittees or work groups should expect to meet outside of the regular meeting dates.

The seats are unpaid positions, although non-governmental members may be eligible for compensation and reimbursement for travel expenses incurred while carrying out ELAC duties.

Interested? Apply online on the Governor’s website by June 30, 2014. Along with your resume, please attach a brief statement that addresses the following:
  • Which vacant seat are you applying for and how do you meet the criteria.
  • How did you hear about ELAC and/or who referred you.
  • What impact do you hope to see ELAC have on early learning in Washington, and how do you want to contribute to that effort.

About ELAC:
Since 2007, ELAC has played a pivotal role in the early learning system as an advisory body to DEL and serves as a connector among the state, local communities and constituencies around Washington.

ELAC’s membership includes parents, child care providers, health/safety experts and legislators, as well as representatives of Tribal Nations, independent schools, the K-12 and higher education systems, and others interested in creating a statewide early learning system that helps all children realize their full potential. Read more about ELAC and its work.