Background Check

Background Check Information

NH state law [RSA 189:13-a(IX)(b)] requires criminal history record checks, for students who enroll in an educator preparation program at an institution of higher education. Additional criminal history record checks, administered by the placement district(s), are required for student teachers and interns. Additionally, local school districts may require a background check prior to the start of any field experience, and students must comply with the local policies. The cost of all background checks are out-of-pocket costs borne by the student.

Possible Background Check

Upon enrollment in a course with a field experience requirement, i.e. when required by the placement districts.
Students enrolled in:

  • EDUC 500/935A: Exploring Teaching, or
  • EDUC 706/806: Introduction to Reading in the Elementary School, or
  • other courses as determined by the district policy of a placement school

As soon as the placement assignment is received, the student should contact the designated person at the placement district for instructions. The results are sent to the superintendent at the placement district(s).

Mandatory Background Check #1

Upon enrollment in an Educator Preparation Program. For students applying to a program leading to certification.

Students applying to one of the following Master's degree programs that lead to certification:

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Early Childhood Education: Special Needs
  • Elementary Education
  • Secondary Education
  • Special Education

Upon application to the Graduate Program, the student should download and print the Department of Education Background and Criminal History Record Release FormPlease note that these materials apply only to students who are applying to a Department of Education Master's degree program that leads to a teacher certification. 

Students applying to one of the following undergraduate degree programs that lead to certification:

  • PreK-Grade 3 Early Childhood Education
  • Mathematics Education
  • Music Education
  • Health & Physical Education

The Department of Family Studies, Department of Mathematics, Department of Music, and Department of Kinesiology list the appropriate contact person on their application materials or provide instructions when students enroll in particular gateway courses. Please contact the appropriate department for details.

Mandatory Background Check #2

Upon placement as a Student Teacher or Intern. For courses with student teachers/interns.

Students enrolled in EDUC 694

Please contact the designated contact person at the placement district(s) as soon as a contract for the student teaching experience is completed. Results are sent to the superintendent at the placement district(s). Students with placements in multiple districts must complete a background check for each district.

Students enrolled in EDUC 900A, 900B, or 900C

Please contact the designated contact person at the placement district(s) as soon as a contract for the student teaching experience is completed. Results are sent to the superintendent at the placement district(s). Students with placements in multiple districts must complete a background check for each district.

Additional information:

  • FAQs 
  • UNH Criminal Background Check Policy (includes appeals procedure). As of December 2018, candidates do not complete a fingerprint check as part of the criminal background check.

If you have questions, please contact Elaine Walczak via email or at (603) 862-1730.