Pennsylvania Law, Act 114, requires that all individuals having contact with children in public and private schools, including student observers and student teachers, complete background clearances in order to help ensure the safety and welfare of the children and young adults they serve. These clearances must be updated annually and valid throughout the field experience semester(s). These clearances include Act 24, 34, 151, Federal Criminal History Report (FBI), and Tuberculosis Test clearance. In addition to these clearances, East Stroudsburg University also requires PSEA student liability, identification, passing Praxis/Pearson test scores, and minimum GPA by major.
Please bring your clearances to Stroud 214 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM and 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM You must include a all of the following seven items: Act 34, Act 151, Act 24, FBI Rap Sheet (UEID number is acceptable), TB test or update, mandated reporter certificate, and a current PSEA card. Incomplete clearances will not be accepted.
All clearances must have been completed in the last 365 days and be current through the end of the semester. For example, if you completed your clearances on October 18, 2020 and the semester ends December 16, 2021, you would need new clearances run because they would not be completed in the last 365 days after October 18, 2021.
Act 34, the Pennsylvania State Police Background check, reviews criminal records within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania State Police have established a web-based application called “Pennsylvania Access To Criminal History,” (PATCH). Application for an Act 34 clearance costs $0 when selecting "volunteer." Districts have agreed to allow ESU students to apply for the volunteer background check since they are not employees. If you are employed by a district or plan to be employed by a district, i.e. through student teaching, you will select the "Submit a New Record Check" and pay the $22.00 fee. Applicants generally receive their clearances immediately.
Act 151, the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance application. The application is $13. If you select, "Volunteer" and then choose "Other" and add East Stroudsburg University as the agency, you will not have to pay. However, this option is only available once every five years. Creating an account and submitting your clearance application online will give you immediate access to your results or the status of your results. As its name implies, this Act checks for any record related to child abuse.
Federal Criminal History Report (FBI Rap Sheet) *Updated January 2018*
A Federal Criminal History Report is required for all prospective employees, field experience students/student teachers, contractors, and their employees who have contact with children in the schools of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Our office provides a step-by-step tutorial to aid in registering for the FBI clearance. College of Education students should use Service Code: 1KG6RT when registering. The cost of this report is $28.75, and fingerprints must be taken at an approved location (Dawn's Tags & Title, 5224 Milford Rd #155, East Stroudsburg, PA 18302, is the closest location to campus). Once fingerprinting is completed, students should ask for a print-out of their RAP Sheet at the Office of Field Experiences and Partnerships.
Act 24 forms verify that a student will report an offense that occurs between clearance checks to the Office of Field Experiences and are available outside of the Office of Field Experiences and Partnerships. There is no cost for this form.
Pennsylvania law requires all individuals working in schools, including student teachers, to provide evidence of a current negative test for tuberculosis (within three months). This form must include the name and address of the physician, date administered, date read, manufacture’s name and lot number, and physician's signature, and it is available outside the Field Experience Office (Stroud 214). If the TB test is over 3 months old but under one year, a student can request an update from the physician who administered the TB test to verify that he/she is currently still free of TB (see TB Results Form below).
Students may go to the East Stroudsburg University Health Services (Express Care) for their tuberculosis test. ESU students who show their student ID at the Express Care Clinic can get the TB test and reading done for a fee. Requesting a TB test from an outside practitioner will incur a charge as well.
Please use our form for reporting the test results: TB Test Results Form 2020-2021
PSEA Membership Card:
Students must maintain liability insurance via a PSEA membership. PSEA membership insures student members up to $1,000,000. PSEA student membership costs $30/year. A discounted rate is provided for students who choose membership in multiple year ranges.
Register for the free online course and note the username and password you create. Save and Print certificate upon completion, valid for 5 years after the completion date.
A valid picture Identification is required for student teaching. Students should scan their East Stroudsburg University identification or valid driver’s license.
Student teachers should pass the appropriate Praxis/Pearson Tests as required by their major prior to student teaching. Please review the PA required Certification Tests and Scores (choose the third item to download the latest certification test and score requirements from PDE) to ensure you have the correct test numbers and understand the scores needed for PA certification.
Academics and Overall GPA
Students must maintain an appropriate GPA as designated by each major’s department. The GPA will be viewed by each student’s adviser and checked through the Office of Field Experiences and Partnerships. Students must have successfully completed prerequisite courses in education and have no incomplete grades in order to student teach. Students must also have a grade of C or better in all major classes in order to student teach.
To qualify for certification in Pennsylvania, you must:
- be of good moral character
- be at least 18 years of age
- be a United States citizen or a legal permanent resident holding a valid green card
- hold a minimum of a bachelor's degree
- complete a Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) approved preparation program with a minimum 3.0 GPA
- meet all testing requirements
- submit an online application through the Teacher Information System (TIMS)