2019 Tennessee Code
Title 49 - Education
Chapter 10 - Special Education
Part 13 - Special Education Behavioral Supports Act
§ 49-10-1304. Isolation or restraint of student -- Reports and record.

Universal Citation: TN Code § 49-10-1304 (2019)
  • (a) A student receiving special education services, as defined by § 49-10-102, may be restrained or isolated only in emergency situations.

  • (b) Individualized education programs that provide for the use of restraint or isolation in emergency situations shall also contain a data driven functional behavior assessment and a plan for modification of the behavior developed and implemented by a qualified team of professionals.

  • (c) In the event that restraint or isolation is imposed on a student, it shall be imposed by:

    • (1) School personnel who have been certified for completing a behavior intervention training program; or

    • (2) Other school personnel when trained personnel are not immediately available.

  • (d)

    • (1) If school personnel impose restraints or isolation in an emergency situation, the school shall immediately contact appropriate school personnel who are designated under department rules to authorize the isolation or restraint. Such school personnel authorized by department rules shall see and evaluate the student's condition within a reasonable time after the intervention and the student's parent or guardian shall be notified, orally or by written or printed communication, the same day the isolation or restraint was used. School personnel shall be held harmless for failure to notify if reasonable effort has been made to notify the student's parent or guardian in compliance with this subdivision (d)(1).

    • (2) If the student's individualized education program does not provide for the use of isolation or restraint for the behavior precipitating such action or if school personnel are required to use isolation or restraint over an extended period of time as determined by department rules, then an individual education program meeting shall be convened within ten (10) days following the use of the isolation or restraint. If the behavior precipitating such action also warrants a change of placement, the child will have all rights provided under applicable state and federal law.

    • (3)

      • (A) School personnel may report a suspected crime by calling a law enforcement official;

      • (B) School personnel may file a juvenile petition against a student receiving special education, only after conducting a manifestation determination that results in a determination that the behavior that resulted in the act requiring disciplinary action was not caused by the student's disability; or

      • (C) A school resource officer (SRO), as defined by § 49-6-4202, may, upon witnessing an offense, take the student into custody.

  • (e)

    • (1) School personnel who must isolate or restrain a student receiving special education services, as defined by § 49-10-102, shall report the incident to the school principal or the principal's designee who shall record the use of the isolation or restraint and the facts surrounding such use. The state board of education shall promulgate rules that mandate a standard reporting format to be used by LEAs.

    • (2) Whenever possible, an additional school staff member should serve as an observer to any act of physical restraint performed on a student to monitor the health and safety of all involved. School personnel shall maintain a continuous direct line of sight to a student who is in isolation to monitor the health and well-being of the student.

  • (f) To the extent possible within the local education agency's funds, the local board of education should address § 49-6-3004(c)(1) by incorporating the following components into its behavior intervention training program:

    • (1) Training in evidence-based techniques shown to be effective in the prevention of isolation and physical restraint;

    • (2) Training in evidence-based techniques shown to be effective in keeping both school personnel and students safe when imposing physical restraint or isolation;

    • (3) Evidence-based skills training on positive behavioral interventions and supports, conflict prevention, functional behavior assessments, de-escalation, and conflict management;

    • (4) Information describing state statutes, policies, rules, and procedures on restraint and isolation;

    • (5) Training in the identification and reporting of abuse and neglect in the school setting; and

    • (6) Certification for school personnel who have completed a behavior intervention training program which should be renewed on a periodic basis.

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