Will a DUI Conviction Prevent You from Being a Teacher?
Any criminal conviction can prevent you from getting a Connecticut teaching certificate because criminal background checks are required to start working in a school. There is no formal reporting system that notifies school boards of arrests of current teachers. A DUI arrest may not lead to a conviction, but it is a criminal offense.A DUI Conviction will Probably Prevent You from Working in a School
All teachers and other school employees must be subject to a state and national criminal background check at least 30 days before being placed in a school. Since a conviction for DUI under C.G.S. § 14-227(a) can either be a misdemeanor or a felony-level offense, a prior DUI conviction would make it difficult to get a teaching job in Connecticut. It is important to understand that most first-time DUI arrests do not result in convictions because most offenders utilize the alcohol education program that usually results in a dismissal of the charges. If you have been arrested for a DUI and have dreams of being a teacher in the future, it is important that you retain a qualified Connecticut DUI attorney to fight the allegations and work to get the charges dismissed if possible.Can a Teacher Lose Their Job for a DUI Arrest?
Many Connecticut teachers assume that because they get a DUI, this means they are going to lose their job. This is not accurate. A DUI arrest does not mean that you are going to lose your teaching job.
There is no reporting program in Connecticut that notifies school boards of arrests of current teachers. Also, a teacher is not under any duty to report their arrest to their employer. With the advent of the internet, many DUI arrests get posted online in publications like the Patch and local newspapers. While our internet scrubbing service can remove these articles, it can take time to get them removed, and often you have to get the case dismissed before the article will be removed. Since teachers are well known in the community, these types of arrests lead to lots of gossip and generally quickly make their way back to members of the school board and school superintendents.
Teachers should never discuss a DUI arrest with a principal or school superintendent without first consulting with an experienced Connecticut DUI lawyer. The school district is going to take your arrest seriously, and you have to respond appropriately.
There is a big difference between a DUI arrest and a conviction. Since most first-time DUI arrests wind up being dismissed, you usually won’t wind up with a conviction. Generally, a conviction for a DUI will trigger action before the state licensing board against your Connecticut Educator Certification. You are entitled to an administrative hearing in which you are entitled to be represented by an attorney of your choice.
Obviously, someone who has a single DUI conviction is not facing as serious a problem as an offender who has a felony conviction for a subsequent DUI conviction. It would be tough to obtain or maintain an educator certification with a felony conviction on your record.First-Time DUI Offenders
While a first-time arrest for DUI in violation of C.G.S. § 14-227(a) can lead to a misdemeanor conviction and you could face up to six months in jail, in most cases first time offenders utilize the alcohol education program to get the charges dismissed. While any unusual aggravating circumstances like an unusually high BAC reading, an accident with injuries, or evading responsibility can complicate the situation, most first-time offenders do not wind up with a criminal conviction. For more information about first-time DUI defense, click this link.What is the Best Approach for a Teacher Accused of a DUI?
Since a teacher or someone who aspires to be a teacher needs to hold an educator certification, they need to make sure they avoid a DUI conviction. Just because you are arrested for a DUI, does not mean that you are going to wind up with a conviction. Most first-time DUI offenders never get convicted. Because you are a licensed professional, you need to treat any arrest more seriously, and you should immediately speak with an experienced DUI defense attorney to explore the best alternatives to avoid a criminal conviction.Contact a Connecticut DUI Attorney Today
If you are a teacher who has been charged with operating under the influence of DUI, you should speak with a Connecticut DUI lawyer as soon as possible to go over the details of your arrest. With 28 years of experience in defense of DUI allegation in Fairfield County and throughout Connecticut, Attorney Allan F. Friedman can give you sound legal advice. Was your arrest lawful? Have your constitutional rights been violated? Our objective is to use every means possible to have the charges dismissed or thrown out, or significantly reduce the charges – and save your job.
We work on a reasonable flat fee basis. Call Attorney Friedman at (203) 357-5555 to schedule your free initial consultation and case evaluation – we are available 24/7 - 365 days a year. Or you can contact us online for a prompt response.