Officials Look to Ax NJ School Board Members for Failing to Complete Background Check

The New Jersey Department of Education said Thursday that 200 school board members must step down from their posts for failure to complete a required criminal background check.

Some school board members have protested a law enacted last year required school board members to complete a criminal background check by December 31. They say they were in the process of being fingerprinted for the check.

The New Jersey School Boards Association is asking the education department to allow those who've begun the background check process to keep their positions.

"Those individuals who did register and schedule fingerprinting appointments by the December 31st deadline, but were not able to complete the process, should receive some consideration," said Frank Belluscio, communications director of the NJSBA.

Some 4,500 school board members completed the background check on time. Belluscio says only nine were disqualified because of a criminal record.

The New Jersey Department of Education has not responded to request for comment.