Teachers with records still on the job in AZ?

Posted at 6:29 PM, Dec 10, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-10 20:29:15-05

Despite promises from Arizona's top educators to fix the problem, officials can't guarantee that a long list of teachers with disciplinary problems aren't still working with students.

"We cannot say for sure because schools would not have seen the disciplinary action on their file," said Department of Education spokesman Charles Tack.

During an emergency meeting on Wednesday, the Board of Education revealed that nearly 50 teachers with a history of disciplinary problems had clear histories because of record-keeping mistakes.

The mistakes occurred when investigators working with the board did not accurately report their findings to the Department of Education.

Tack said the department is currently updating their records and contacting schools in an effort to find out if any of the teachers with inaccurate records are still employed.

Some board members though are worried that infighting within the board may lead to more mistakes.

"We have seen a long track record of inefficiencies within this system," said Superintendent of Public Instruction, Diane Douglas.

During Wednesday's board meeting, the board disagreed over who should be in control of the investigators.

Douglas wants the investigators moved over to the Department of Education where she would be able to supervise them.

Other board members believe the investigators should remain independent, and under the supervision of the board.

"I think there is a need to keep the investigative unit separate from the certification, application, and renewal process," said Board President Greg MIller.

At Wednesday's meeting, the board voted to update their records and look into the investigative unit's standard operating procedures. 

Those finding are scheduled to be presented at a board meeting on Dec. 21.

You can also look up Arizona teacher certifications and deficiencies online here.