Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense in Texas, carrying severe penalties that could lead to the revocation of one’s driving privileges, hefty fines, and even imprisonment. For educators, the implications are even graver. A DWI conviction could result in disciplinary actions by the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC), potentially jeopardizing a career in education. The SBEC can issue varying levels of disciplinary action, ranging from reprimands to the revocation of the educator’s teaching certificate.

Career Consequences for Texas Teachers With DWI

If you are a teacher facing a DWI charge, it is crucial to seek experienced legal counsel immediately. A DWI conviction could have severe career implications, including the potential loss of a teaching certificate. Price & Twine, PLLC Georgetown DWI lawyers focus on alcohol-related offenses and can help individuals through the complexities of Texas drunk driving laws. For legal assistance, you can reach out to us at (512) 354-1880.

Overview of Career Consequences for Texas Teachers With DWI

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Understanding the Role of SBEC in Educator Discipline

The State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) is responsible for disciplining and overseeing educators in the state of Texas. This organization plays a crucial role in ensuring the quality and integrity of the state’s education system. One of the areas that the SBEC focuses on is the disciplinary action for criminal activities, including DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) offenses.

SBEC operates under the Texas Education Agency and has the mandate to administer and implement disciplinary actions against educators who violate laws or professional ethics. The board sets priorities for investigating complaints based on the severity and immediacy of the allegations. It’s worth noting that not all complaints lead to investigations, and those with concerns are advised to also report to their local school board and district administrators.

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Specific Conduct That Leads to SBEC Disciplinary Action

The SBEC can take disciplinary action against educators for a broad range of reasons. These include participating in school or educational activities that are in violation of the law, failing to report child abuse, violating the Code of Ethics, and hindering the reporting of an educator’s known criminal history. Convictions for crimes, especially those directly related to the educator’s professional duties, can also trigger disciplinary actions. Of special concern here is the potential for disciplinary action against educators convicted of DWI offenses.

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Crimes Considered Directly Related to the Teaching Profession in Texas

SBEC categorizes certain crimes as directly related to the roles and responsibilities of an educator. These include crimes involving moral turpitude, sexual or physical abuse of minors, and crimes that occur on school property or at school-sponsored activities. Importantly, the SBEC also includes crimes involving public intoxication, DWI, and disorderly conduct, especially if two or more such offenses occur within a 12-month period, as directly related to the teaching profession.

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Severity and Types of Disciplinary Action

When it comes to disciplinary action, the SBEC has a range of options at its disposal. These include the issuance of non-inscribed or inscribed reprimands. While non-inscribed reprimands are formal but not published, inscribed reprimands appear on the educator’s official certification records. The board can also place restrictions on the issuance, renewal, or holding of an educator’s certificate. In more severe cases, an educator’s certificate may be suspended, revoked, or canceled, either permanently or for a set term. The consequences for DWI offenses could range from an inscribed reprimand to the revocation of the educator’s certificate, depending on the circumstances and severity of the case.

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Who Is Subject to SBEC’s Jurisdiction?

It is vital to understand that the SBEC’s jurisdiction extends beyond teachers. Anyone holding a certificate issued under the Texas Education Code falls under SBEC’s purview. This includes counselors, librarians, teachers, educational diagnosticians, paraprofessionals, and administrators. Additionally, applicants for certification and individuals in educator preparation programs can also be investigated and disciplined by the SBEC.

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Reporting Misconduct to the Texas Education Agency

In the event that one wishes to file an accusation of misconduct concerning an educator, the complaint must be mailed to the Texas Education Agency’s main address. The complaint letter should provide a detailed account of the alleged misconduct, identify the educator involved, and include the names and addresses of any witnesses. The SBEC requires that the name and address of the individual filing the complaint be included; anonymous complaints are not accepted.

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Criminal History Checks

In Texas, becoming a certified teacher involves more than just educational qualifications; a national criminal history check is also part of the process. Texas Education Code (TEC) §22.0831 mandates this screening. If you’re an aspiring educator in Texas, you may wonder how a Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) charge or other criminal history might affect your chances of getting certified. Here, the focus is on explaining what the Texas Education Agency (TEA) says about criminal histories, including DWI, and how it may impact teaching careers.

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National Criminal History Checks: the Basics

Under Texas law, specifically TEC §22.0831, the TEA is required to conduct a national criminal history check on everyone applying for certification as an educator. This is to ensure that applicants have the requisite ethical and professional standing to work in an educational environment.

Will a Criminal History Impact Teacher Certification?

It’s not an automatic disqualification, but it does complicate matters. TEA evaluates each case individually, considering various factors such as:

  • Nature And Seriousness Of The Crime
    Obviously, more serious crimes weigh more heavily against you.
  • Relevance To The Teaching Profession
    How does the crime relate to the job of being an educator?
  • Potential For Future Offenses
    Is it likely that the applicant would commit the same type of crime again?
  • Impact On Professional Competence
    Does the crime affect the person’s ability to perform teaching duties?
  • Extent Of Past Criminal Activity
    A single mistake is viewed differently than a pattern of criminal behavior.
  • Age At Time Of Offense
    Younger age at the time of the offense may be considered less harshly.
  • Time Elapsed Since Last Offense
    The more time that has passed without further incidents, the better.
  • Behavior Before And After The Crime
    Good conduct and work activity can work in your favor.
  • Completion Of Probation
    Successfully finishing probation or deferred adjudication is a positive sign.
  • Evidence Of Rehabilitation
    The more evidence you can show of making amends, the better.
  • Other Evidence
    This can include letters of recommendation or other supportive documents.

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Preliminary Criminal History Evaluation Service

For those concerned about how a criminal history might impact their application, TEA offers a Preliminary Criminal History Evaluation service for a non-refundable fee. This allows you to get an idea of how your specific situation could affect your certification prospects before you actually apply.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Career Consequences for Teachers With DWI Offenses in Texas

What Is the Role Of The State Board For Educator Certification (SBEC) In Educator Discipline?
The SBEC operates under the Texas Education Agency and is responsible for administering and implementing disciplinary actions against educators who have been convicted of crimes, including DWI offenses. The board has the authority to investigate complaints and enforce disciplinary measures based on the severity of the violations.

Which Conducts Can Lead To SBEC Disciplinary Action?
Convictions for crimes, particularly those that are directly related to an educator’s professional duties, can result in disciplinary actions. Specific crimes categorized as directly related to the teaching profession include public intoxication, DWI, and disorderly conduct, especially if they occur more than once within a 12-month period.

What Types Of Disciplinary Actions Can SBEC Take?
SBEC can issue either non-inscribed or inscribed reprimands. While non-inscribed reprimands are formal but not publicly recorded, inscribed reprimands are recorded on the educator’s official certification records. In severe cases, the SBEC can even suspend, revoke, or cancel an educator’s certificate.

Who Comes Under SBEC’s Jurisdiction?
The SBEC’s jurisdiction isn’t limited to just teachers. It extends to anyone holding a certificate issued under Chapter 21, Subchapter B of the Texas Education Code. This includes librarians, counselors, administrators, and even paraprofessionals.

How Does Reporting Misconduct Work?
If someone wants to report misconduct against an educator, they must mail a complaint to the Texas Education Agency’s main address. The complaint should be detailed and must include the name and address of the individual filing the complaint. Anonymous complaints are not accepted by SBEC.

What About Criminal History Checks?
Texas law mandates a national criminal history check for all educator certification applicants, as per Texas Education Code (TEC) §22.0831. A DWI charge can complicate the certification process, but it is not an automatic disqualification. The Texas Education Agency evaluates each case individually based on multiple factors.

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Areas We Serve

We service cities in Williamson County such as:

We also service cities in Bell County such as:

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Career Consequences for Texas Teachers With DWI Resources


DWI Attorney

Are you a teacher facing a DWI charge in Georgetown, Williamson County, Bell County, and surrounding areas? If so, speak with Price &. Price & Twine, PLLC. Our DWI lawyers stand ready to defend you and protect your rights. For those based in Georgetown, Texas, Price & Twine is the right choice. Dealing with a DWI is a stressful ordeal no matter your profession. However, this stress is heightened when an individual can lose their job due to this charge. With so much on the line, don’t leave your career and reputation to chance—get the professional legal assistance you deserve.