Excerpted from cannoncourier.com blog

Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell (R-Nashville) today applauded the passage of five bills that help protect Tennessee school children from educator sexual misconduct. The bills were filed after several weaknesses were revealed in a Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury report earlier this year.

“I want to thank each of the sponsors for guiding these bills through the legislative process,” said Speaker Harwell. “These protections will help make our children safer for generations to come. Tennesseans expect meaningful changes like these from their government.”

All five bills passed on the House floor with bipartisan support. The bills are summarized as follows:

House Bill 1997 (carried by Rep. Harry Brooks), requires all public schools and child care programs to ensure criminal background checks are completed every five years for all educators or any other employee whose job requires them to work with or near school children. Additionally, if Tennessee is accepted into a national program, public schools and child care programs would instead be required to participate in the FBI “Rap Back” program, which provides continual notifications directly to districts of any criminal history reported to the FBI after an employee is hired.

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