Most teachers' aides hire by Iowa's public schools aren't required by state law to undergo background checks and even when districts do run checks, the process is often less rigorous as the one required for licensed educators.
Federal checks were added as part of the teacher licensing process in 2002. Iowa law was changed in 2007 to require state and national checks on those licensed by the state. But most teacher aides aren't licensed.
Experts and parents say the case of a woman who spent time in an Indiana prison on manslaughter charges and was hired as a teacher aide in Iowa shows there are gaps in the system.
Rep. Josh Byrnes of Osage says the issue may surface in the upcoming legislative session.
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