Question 1: If a teacher has been fingerprinted in the school district in which they are employed, do they have to also be fingerprinted in the district where an event is being conducted?
Answer 1: No. Section 1012.467(2)(f), Florida Statutes, governs "noninstructional contractors," which is what a district employee performing services in another school district would be considered. That subsection permits such person to inform the district in which competition is taking place that he or she has completed a criminal history check in another school district within the past five (5) years. The school district conducting the solo or ensemble activity must verify this fact with the district in which the background check was conducted.
Moreover, Section 1012.467(8)(b), Florida Statutes, provides that an identification badge shall be issued to noninstructional contractors by a school district conducting a background check and the badge "shall be recognized by all school districts."
Question 2: Would an adjudicator who is not a teacher in a school district have to have a level two (2) fingerprint background check?
Answer 2: Yes, if he or she is receiving compensation. Section 1012.467(1)(a), Florida Statutes, defines a "noninstructional contractor" as "any vendor, individual, or entity under contract with a school or with the school board who receives remuneration for services performed for the school district or a school, but who is not otherwise considered an employee of the school district. The term also includes any employee of a contractor who performs services for the school district or school under the contract and any subcontractor and its employees." We view that definition to be broad enough to include adjudicators who are contracted to provide services. Pursuant to Section 1012.467(2)(a), Florida Statutes, such persons are required to have a fingerprint-based criminal history check.
Question 3: If an accompanist who plays the piano is in with the student, must he or she also be subject to a background check?
Answer 3: Yes, if the accompanist is a paid individual. The definition of a noninstructional contractor contemplates an individual who receives remuneration. However, if the accompanist is under the "direct supervision" (defined as someone who remains physically present and remains in line of sight at all times with such person) of a screened school district employee or a screened contractor, the accompanist would not require level two (2) screening.
Question 4: If more than one individual is in a room with a student (i.e., an adjudicator and an observer) would both be subject to a background check?
Answer 4: Yes, if the observer is paid (see question 3, above).
Question 5: Is there a requirement that persons volunteering to participate in a solo or ensemble activity be subject to a level two (2) background check?
Answer 5: No. Volunteers are not required to undergo a fingerprint based background check. However, volunteers are required to have their name searched against the sexual offender/predator database (see, Section 943.04351, Florida Statutes). In addition, local districts have the discretion to establish additional standards applicable to volunteers.