The Tennessean is reporting that all applicants who want to work in Tennessee schools will be checked for warrants now, even if they were never arrested.
The policy change, which will affect about 20,000 applicants annually, comes after the arrest of Ronald Boykin Jr., a Metro Nashville teacher who passed three background checks even though he was wanted in a sex crime case involving Chattanooga children.
Charges against Boykin did not show up because the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation did not search a national database of warrants in his background check. Reviewed instead were arrests, convictions, the Tennessee sex offender registry and statewide restraining orders.
Days after The Tennessean outlined what went wrong in the Boykin case, TBI officials announced they were expanding background checks to include a search for warrants.
"We can't allow that to happen again, and we'll do everything we can to make sure it doesn't," Kristin Helm, spokeswoman for the agency, said Wednesday. "One teacher like that is one too many."
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