Office of Educator Preparation

Fingerprinting and Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) Approval Process


Revised 1/6/21

NOTE: The following update only applies to students in undergraduate early field experience courses (EDU 100, EDU 222, EDU 305, EDU 310, SED 335). CHRC/fingerprinting requirements for students enrolled in internship courses have not changed as of this update.

Courses with outcomes related to early field experience activities (EDU 100, EDU 222, EDU 305, EDU 310, SED 335) will not include in-person placements in K-12 schools or agencies in Spring 2021 to protect the health and safety of USM students as well as K-12 educators and students, and to respect the difficult tasks that schools face in this uncertain time. Instructors will design alternative course activities to meet these learning outcomes.

Because students will not meet face-to-face with children, the Office of Educator Preparation (OEP) is temporarily suspending its requirement for students enrolled in early field experience classes to provide proof of Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) / fingerprinting approval for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 only. Additionally, the OEP acknowledges that some students living out-of-state may not have been able to complete the process due to restrictions on fingerprinting sites in other states. If you intend to continue with education coursework or work with children in a public school setting in the near future, the OEP still recommends completing this process when possible as this is only a temporary suspension.

Contact Office of Educator Preparation Interim Manager, Julie Marsh, with any questions:


Revised 8/28/20

Governor Mills released another Executive Order (PDF) on August 26, 2020 repealing the previous Order (#52, 5/12/20) regarding CHRC requirements during the state of emergency:

"The modification of fingerprinting and CHRC requirements as set forth in section I.A.2 of Executive Order 52 FY 19/20 is repealed, provided that all school personnel shall have 30 days from the date of this Order to complete any outstanding background checks."

In other words, as of 8/26/20 all individuals working in K-12 school districts must have fingerprinting/CHRC approval in place within 30 days of the order (or 9/24/20).




Anyone who works with children in a school setting is required by law to be fingerprinted at a Maine Department of Education (MDOE) approved fingerprint site. Students must have a Criminal History Records Check (CHRC) approval based on the fingerprint results.

All students are required to be fingerprinted and to provide proof of approval to USM prior to enrolling in a course with an accompanying field experience and/or internship/student teaching placement (see 1/6/21 update above RE: early field experience courses in Spring 2021).


  • The fingerprinting and background check approval process can take up to 5 weeks, so please plan accordingly
  • Fingerprinting and CHRC costs $70 total
    • If you currently receive financial aid through USM, you may be able to adjust your "cost of attendance" to include some or all of the $70 in fees, which may increase your eligibility for certain loans. Contact your Financial Aid Counselor to discuss your potential eligibility.
  • This process only needs to be completed once every 5 years, or whenever your CHRC approval expires
  • The USM Office of Educator Preparation (OEP) will keep your approval on file, so you don't need to resubmit proof for each subsequent course with a field experience component, unless you are contacted directly regarding your submission


Instructions for USM students

* If you have not been fingerprinted through the MDOE in the past 5 years, please follow the instructions on the MDOE website, which are summarized in Steps 1 & 2 below: *

1. Submit a CHRC application with the Maine Department of Education (MDOE)

There is a one-time $15 fee for this process.

  • Visit the MDOE fingerprinting website:
  • Create a MEIS account or log in to an existing account (see "additional support documents" on the side navigation bar for a step-by-step guide)
  • Submit a new application for CHRC (see "additional support documents" on the side navigation bar for a step-by-step guide)
    • Note: After you choose "No Bachelor Degree" according to the step-by-step instructions on the MDOE page, choose "Non Teaching Approval"


2. Register for and attend fingerprinting appointment through IdentoGO

If you do not register, you will not be able to have your fingerprints taken. There is a one-time $55 fee for this process.

  • Visit the IdentoGO site:
  • Choose "Schedule a New Appointment"
    • NOTE: If you live out-of-state, you can register to send your fingerprints in through the mail. Choose the second option, "Register for Fingerprint Card Processing Service"
  • From agency list, choose Department of Education
  • For applicant type, choose New Hire / initial applicants
  • Read the terms and "agree" to choose a fingerprinting location and appointment
  • Take your confirmation number (received after registration) and a picture ID (a driver's license or Maine State ID is preferred) to the fingerprint site on the assigned date and time


* Start with Step 3 if you already have CHRC approval on file with the Maine Department of Education *

3. Check the status of your CHRC Approval

From your fingerprints, state and federal criminal history record checks will be conducted. The results of the state and federal criminal history record checks will be forwarded to the Maine DOE to be used for the issuance or denial of approvals. If you are not approved, you will receive notification in writing. NOTE: It can take several weeks after you complete Steps 1 & 2 above for your CHRC approval to go through.

  • Visit the MDOE Certification Status page:
  • Choose the option that applies to you (if you have created a MEIS account or not)
    • If and when you are approved, you will be able to view and print your approval information from the relevant page
  • Take a screenshot (or Print --> save as PDF) of the status screen for proof of credentials
    • Make sure the image includes your name and the expiration date of your CHRC approval
    • If you have other active certifications or endorsements and you do not see a CHRC line, don't worry - your CHRC clearance "rides on the back" of your active certificate (per MDOE Certification FAQs page 1/27/21)


4. Provide proof of CHRC Approval to the USM Office of Educator Preparation (OEP)

  • Complete the form (with a screenshot from Step 3 above) at the following link to submit proof of approval:
    • If you have other active certifications or endorsements and you do not see a CHRC line (see last bullet under Step 3 above), enter the expiration date of your most recent active certification on the form



Contact OEP Interim Manager, Julie Marsh, with any questions:


Revised 1/27/21