- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - Alabama education officials are apologizing for a background check lapse that led to a teacher with a criminal history being hired at a Mobile County middle school.

Deandre Hill, 32, is accused of having sexual contact with a Denton Middle School student and was arrested last week.

Hill was charged with indecent exposure last year while he worked at Southlawn Middle School in Montgomery. The charges were dropped. Court records show that before working in Mobile County, Hill also pleaded guilty to DUI in 2010 and breaking into a vehicle in 2009. It’s unclear if he has an attorney in the case involving a Denton Middle School student.

Outdated information for Hill was listed on the Alabama Department of Education’s website when Mobile officials reviewed Hill’s background, department spokesman Michael Sibley said.

“Not only did we have a clear process and clearance from the state, but very strong references from the former school system, so there weren’t any flags on this one for us to delve into any deeper,” Mobile County Public Schools Superintendent Martha Peek told WALA-TV.

“It is unfortunate that this had to occur in order for it to be brought to our attention that there was a lag in the time it took for us to update the information. But, the lesson’s learned, and we will be getting it updated immediately,” Sibley told WKRG-TV.

Sibley added that the district accepts responsibility for the lapse and has appointed a staffer to ensure the department’s internal and external websites are updated when a teacher with a certificate is informed of disciplinary action being taken against them.



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