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Fingerprint & Background Check Requirements

The 2004 Florida legislature passed Senate Bill 2986 amending Sections 1012.32 and 1012.56, Florida Statutes. Effective June 10, 2004, all students in educator preparation programs who are engaged in field experiences and who have direct contact with PreK-12 students are required to supply the school district with fingerprints for the purpose of completing a criminal background check. The legislation became effective June 10, 2004. Educator preparation programs at UF include field placements in the Alachua County Schools and other public or non-profit settings with P-12 students. Therefore, to comply with the new legislation, the College of Education and the Alachua County Schools have developed the following requirements. Instructions are included:

WHAT: Fingerprinting and Background Check
WHERE: Alachua County Schools’ Personnel Office
WEST WING of the Kirby Smith Center
620 East University Avenue
WHEN: Tuesday – Thursday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
COST: $54.50 credit card or money order ONLY NO cash accepted

Credit Card
To pay online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, go to www.cogentid.com or call 1-888-439-2486, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Visa, Discover, American Express, and Mastercard are accepted.

Money Order
Present money order payable to Cogent Systems at the time fingerprints are submitted. Students must print their name on the money order.

  • Go to the Human Resources Receptionist in the West wing of the Kirby Smith Center and indicate you are a UF student who needs to be fingerprinted. BE PATIENT- the district personnel office has many employees and college/university students who will need fingerprinting at this time of the year in order to comply with the law.
  • Take your photo ID and money order (if not using the credit card option).
  • Identify yourself as a “UF STUDENT” so that your clearance will be placed in the correct file. Not doing so may cause your clearance to be placed in the incorrect file.
  • Complete the fingerprinting process (electronic fingerprints, no inky smudging).
  • Thank the person doing the fingerprinting…it’s a lot of work and there will be an overload with all the UF students who need to be cleared in addition to students from other colleges/universities who complete placements in Alachua County. You will then be able to leave Kirby Smith.
  • Background check/clearance will take approximately 24/48 hours. Call 352-955-7654 x 224 and speak personnel services secretary to confirm that your background clearance is back. You must bring a photo ID to pick up the printout of your background clearance and then bring the background clearance to the COE Office of Student Services, G416 Norman Hall.
  • Fingerprint results that indicate criminal history may require you to provide arrest or court documents to the school district before a clearance can be determined. The College of Education Office of Student Services will contact you if further information is needed.

Alachua County Substitute Teachers: If you are a current substitute teacher in Alachua County, please bring your Substitute Card to the COE Office of Student Services in G416, as proof that you have been fingerprinted by the School Board of Alachua County.

Proteach Students: Prior to beginning the Proteach teacher preparation program (elementary or secondary), the level 2 screening with fingerprinting described above must be completed.