The Austin school district did not immediately return calls seeking comment.
Austin was the first district to implement a new law requiring all certified teachers and substitutes to be fingerprinted by Sept. 1, 2011. Other school employees, such as janitors and cafeteria workers, will be required to complete the process at the time of their hire.
The prints are scanned by the Department of Public Safety and sent to the FBI for a national criminal history database check. School employees who don’t comply risk losing their teaching certification.
The newspaper requested documents showing a school-by-school breakdown of crimes revealed in the background checks and the outcomes of those cases. The newspaper has reported that it did not ask for names or other identifying information.
The district argued that releasing the requested information would violate employees’ privacy rights and is not in the public interest.