How to Look at a Teacher's Public Records

By Joanna Davidson

People are often surprised to learn how much information is available about those employed in the public school system. The Freedom of Information Act has trickled down from the federal to the state level as consumers have grown accustomed to having background information available on companies and government entities. Teacher certification, and in some states educator ratings, are a matter of public record. Concerned parents have access to a myriad of information on their children's teachers, including the status of a teacher's certification and state licensing, college coursework taken, and even personal data.

Step 1

Locate your state's board of education website online. Enter the required information into the search fields for the specific teacher you are interested in and browse through his or her state license information, teaching credentials and educational background.

Step 2

Log on to your state's department of safety website to check for recent criminal activity in which the teacher may have been involved. Teachers must initially undergo a thorough background check to earn teaching credentials but some states do not require an ongoing background check once they have hired an individual into the school system. The public has access to any pending criminal charges, harassment cases and other related litigation.

Step 3

Locate your school district's website and log on to their human resources page. Scroll through the salary schedule for the appropriate pay rate based on the teacher's years of experience. Since teachers are state government employees, their salaries are posted publicly on the Internet. Enter specific teacher information into the fields to locate any stipends, benefits or deductions associated with the teacher. You can also find a teacher's official position title and years of experience on this site.