(a) It is the policy of this state to treat with dignity and respect all students, including students with disabilities who receive special education services under Subchapter A, Chapter 29. A student with a disability who receives special education services under Subchapter A, Chapter 29, may not be confined in a locked box, locked closet, or other specially designed locked space as either a discipline management practice or a behavior management technique.
(b) In this section:
(1) “Restraint” means the use of physical force or a mechanical device to significantly restrict the free movement of all or a portion of a student’s body.
(2) “Seclusion” means a behavior management technique in which a student is confined in a locked box, locked closet, or locked room that:
(A) is designed solely to seclude a person; and
(B) contains less than 50 square feet of space.
(3) “Time-out” means a behavior management technique in which, to provide a student with an opportunity to regain self-control, the student is separated from other students for a limited period in a setting:
(A) that is not locked; and
(B) from which the exit is not physically blocked by furniture, a closed door held shut from the outside, or another inanimate object.
(4) “Law enforcement duties” means activities of a peace officer relating to the investigation and enforcement of state criminal laws and other duties authorized by the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Terms Used In Texas Education Code 37.0021
- Dismissal: The dropping of a case by the judge without further consideration or hearing. Source:
- Person: includes corporation, organization, government or governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, association, and any other legal entity. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
- Property: means real and personal property. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Rule: includes regulation. See Texas Government Code 311.005
- Written: includes any representation of words, letters, symbols, or figures. See Texas Government Code 311.005
(c) A school district employee or volunteer or an independent contractor of a district may not place a student in seclusion. This subsection does not apply to the use of seclusion in a court-ordered placement, other than a placement in an educational program of a school district, or in a placement or facility to which the following law, rules, or regulations apply:
(1) the Children’s Health Act of 2000, Pub. L. No. 106-310, any subsequent amendments to that Act, any regulations adopted under that Act, or any subsequent amendments to those regulations;
(2) 40 T.A.C. Sections 720.1001-720.1013; or
(3) 25 T.A.C. Section 412.308(e).
(d) The commissioner by rule shall adopt procedures for the use of restraint and time-out by a school district employee or volunteer or an independent contractor of a district in the case of a student with a disability receiving special education services under Subchapter A, Chapter 29. A procedure adopted under this subsection must:
(1) be consistent with:
(A) professionally accepted practices and standards of student discipline and techniques for behavior management; and
(B) relevant health and safety standards;
(2) identify any discipline management practice or behavior management technique that requires a district employee or volunteer or an independent contractor of a district to be trained before using that practice or technique; and
(3) require a school district to:
(A) provide written notification to the student’s parent or person standing in parental relation to the student for each use of restraint that includes:
(i) the name of the student;
(ii) the name of the district employee or volunteer or independent contractor of the district who administered the restraint;
(iii) the date of the restraint;
(iv) the time that the restraint started and ended;
(v) the location of the restraint;
(vi) the nature of the restraint;
(vii) a description of the activity in which the student was engaged immediately preceding the use of the restraint;
(viii) the behavior of the student that prompted the restraint;
(ix) any efforts made to de-escalate the situation and any alternatives to restraint that were attempted;
(x) if the student has a behavior improvement plan or a behavioral intervention plan, whether the plan may need to be revised as a result of the behavior that led to the restraint; and
(xi) if the student does not have a behavior improvement plan or a behavioral intervention plan, information on the procedure for the student’s parent or person standing in parental relation to the student to request an admission, review, and dismissal committee meeting to discuss the possibility of conducting a functional behavioral assessment of the student and developing a plan for the student;
(B) include in a student’s special education eligibility school records:
(i) a copy of the written notification provided to the student’s parent or person standing in parental relation to the student under Paragraph (A);
(ii) information on the method by which the written notification was sent to the parent or person; and
(iii) the contact information for the parent or person to whom the district sent the notification; and
(C) if the student has a behavior improvement plan or behavioral intervention plan, document each use of time-out prompted by a behavior of the student specified in the student’s plan, including a description of the behavior that prompted the time-out.
(e) In the case of a conflict between a rule adopted under Subsection (d) and a rule adopted under Subchapter A, Chapter 29, the rule adopted under Subsection (d) controls.
(f) For purposes of this subsection, “weapon” includes any weapon described under Section 37.007(a)(1). This section does not prevent a student’s locked, unattended confinement in an emergency situation while awaiting the arrival of law enforcement personnel if:
(1) the student possesses a weapon; and
(2) the confinement is necessary to prevent the student from causing bodily harm to the student or another person.
(g) This section and any rules or procedures adopted under this section do not apply to:
(1) a peace officer performing law enforcement duties, except as provided by Subsection (i);
(2) juvenile probation, detention, or corrections personnel; or
(3) an educational services provider with whom a student is placed by a judicial authority, unless the services are provided in an educational program of a school district.
(h) This section and any rules or procedures adopted under this section apply to a peace officer only if the peace officer:
(1) is employed or commissioned by a school district; or
(2) provides, as a school resource officer, a regular police presence on a school district campus under a memorandum of understanding between the district and a local law enforcement agency.
(i) A school district shall report electronically to the agency, in accordance with standards provided by commissioner rule, information relating to the use of restraint by a peace officer performing law enforcement duties on school property or during a school-sponsored or school-related activity. A report submitted under this subsection must be consistent with the requirements adopted by commissioner rule for reporting the use of restraint involving students with disabilities.