Below are the policies, guidelines, and expectations for the various teacher certification programs that students in the PDS are expected to follow. A copy of these policies is provided to students prior to entering the PDS and a signed copy is kept on file in the Education Services Office.  Students are encouraged to download a copy for their records.

Elementary, Special Education, Bilingual, and UTeach Fine Arts

Policies Guidelines Expectations Checklist

UTeach Urban Teachers

Policies Guidelines Expectations Checklist 

Other Forms Provided to Students Prior to Entering the PDS

  • Criminal History Check

School districts require criminal background clearance before anyone works in their schools. All students accepted into the PDS are required to complete a criminal history check for the district in which they are placed. Criminal history checks may require completing district forms, online applications, and in some cases, fingerprinting. Education Services or the PDS coordinator will provide instructions for completing the criminal history check required by the school district. 

Generic Criminal History Check Authorization Form

It is important to know that felonies and even certain misdemeanors may prevent students from participating in the fieldwork required by this program.  If you have questions about what may be on your record, you may request a copy through the Department of Public Safety https://publicsite.dps.texas.gov

Additionally, felonies and certain misdemeanors may prevent the State from approving teacher certification.  For questions about state eligibility, TEA can provide a preliminary criminal history evaluation (PCHE) for a fee of $50.  Use the following link to access the website:   https://tea.texas.gov/Texas_Educators/Investigations/Preliminary_Criminal_History_Evaluation-FAQs/

For general guidelines used in determining Texas teacher certification eligibility (which requires a separate federal background check), please visit the Investigations and Disciplinary Rules Enforcement web page (below) on the TEA site.


  • FERPA Release Information

FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, pertains to the release of and access to educational records.  This release represents your written consent to permit The University of Texas at Austin to disclose certain educational records and any information contained therein to the specific individual(s) identified on the form.

FERPA Release