Administrative Rules and Procedures to Implement Policy 507.11
Service animals include guide dogs, hearing dogs, signal dogs, and any dog or animal that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a disabled student, including, but not limited to, assisting students who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting students who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting a student during a seizure, alerting a student to the presence of allergens, retrieving items, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to students with mobility disabilities, and helping students with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors. Service animals do not include pets, farm animals, wild or exotic animals, or any animals whose function is to provide crime deterrent effects, emotional support, comfort, companionship, therapeutic benefits, or to promote emotional well-being.
The use of service animals by disabled students in school district classrooms and facilities present legitimate safety, health, environment and educational issues which effect the operations of the school district’s services, programs, and activities, and accordingly the use of service animals by disabled students will be subject to these administrative rules and procedures, which are designed to accommodate the use of service animals while maintaining legitimate safety requirements for a safe, healthy and productive educational environment.
REQUEST FOR USE OF SERVICE ANIMAL
The parent or guardian must submit a written request for the use of a service animal to the school district’s Director of Special Services. The written request must identify and describe the need for the service animal as it relates to the student’s disability and describe the manner in which the service animal will serve the student’s particular needs and/or will do work or perform tasks for the benefit of the student.
The parent or guardian shall provide with the written request documentation of ownership, documentation from a licensed veterinarian that the service animal is healthy and has had all required vaccinations, documentation of the student’s and service animal’s successful completion of a public access test, documentation that the service animal is individually trained to perform disability mitigating tasks for the student, documentation that the student is properly trained to handle the service animal, documentation of proper licensing, and documentation of liability insurance covering the service animal.
A written request for the use of a service animal by a disabled student on school district property must be submitted no less than three weeks prior to the proposed use of the service animal. No service animal may be on school district property without the prior approval required by these administrative rules and procedures. If a student arrives at school with a service animal and such prior approval has not been obtained, then the parent or guardian will be immediately notified and directed to come to school and retrieve the service animal until the school district can determine whether the presence of the service animal at school is in compliance with the law and these administrative rules and procedures.
As part of the school district’s review and consideration of a written request for the use of a service animal at school, the school district may require a meeting with the parent or guardian along with school district staff from the involved school or classrooms.
The school district will approve a request for the use of a service animal when the animal qualifies as a service animal, all of the required documentation is properly provided, the presence or behavior of the service animal will not interfere with the educational process of any student or pose a health or safety threat to any student, school personnel, or other persons, and the parent or guardian, and the student if of sufficient age and maturity, execute a service animal agreement with the school district. The school district’s approval of the use of a service animal on school district property is subject to periodic review, revision and revocation by the school district.
PARENT AND STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES AND CONDUCT OF SERVICE ANIMAL
The parent or guardian shall be solely responsible for any and all costs and expenses associated with the ownership, training, boarding, veterinarian and health care, licensing, insurance coverage, and care and maintenance of the service animal, and neither the school nor the school district shall be liable in any manner therefore.
The service animal shall be allowed to accompany the student at all times, and everywhere at school and on the school grounds where students are permitted access, except for locations which due to health, environmental, and/or safety hazards or concerns shall be off limits, including but not limited to kitchens, mechanical rooms, boiler rooms, equipment rooms, electrical rooms, custodial rooms, any rooms which contain machinery and/or chemicals which may be harmful to animals, any rooms where protective clothing is worn, any rooms where there is moving machinery, any rooms where there are sharp metal cuttings or other sharp objects on the floor or protruding from a surface, and any rooms where there are hot materials on the floor.
The student must be in full control of the service animal at all times, and the service animal must be in the immediate vicinity of the student at all times while at school or on school grounds, and must be also on a harness, leash, or other tether, unless either the student is unable because of a disability to use a harness, leash or other tether, or the use of a harness, leash, or other tether would interfere with the service animal’s safe, effective performance of work or tasks, in which case the service animal must be otherwise under the student’s voice control, signal control, or other effective means of control. The care, supervision, and control of the service animal is solely the responsibility of the student and the school shall not assume or take custody, supervision or control of, or responsibility for, the service animal or the care and feeding thereof.
The service animal shall not urinate or defecate in any inappropriate locations and the student must always carry equipment which is sufficient to clean up the service animal’s waste, must immediately remove the waste, and is responsible for the proper disposal of the service animal’s waste.
The service animal must always be clean, well groomed, and not have an offensive odor. If any student or school staff member assigned to the classroom in which the service animal is permitted suffers an allergic reaction to the service animal, then the student will be required to remove the service animal to a different location designated by the school principal or designee and alternatives will be considered by the school principal, the parent or guardian, and appropriate school and/or school district staff. Such alternatives could include the reassignment of the student to a different classroom or to a different school district school where an appropriate educational program for the student is available. This will also apply if an individual on school transportation suffers an allergic reaction. In that case, alternatives will be considered by the school principal, the parent or guardian, and appropriate school and/or school district staff. The service animal must be in good health and not ill when brought to school. If the service animal becomes ill while at school the parent or guardian will be called and will be required to immediately come to the school and remove the service animal from the school premises.
The service animal must not in any way interfere with the educational process of any student or pose a health or safety threat to any student, school personnel, or other persons. The service animal shall not solicit attention, visit or annoy other students or school personnel. The service animal shall also not vocalize unnecessarily, whether by barking, growling or whining, and it shall show no vicious or aggressive behavior towards people or other animals.
The service animal will be immediately removed from the school premises by the parent or guardian or authorized animal control officers at any time when, in the opinion of the school’s principal or designee, the service animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others; the service animal is out of control; the student is not effectively controlling the service animal’s behavior; the service animal is not housebroken; or the service animal’s presence represents a fundamental alteration to, or creates a fundamental disruption of or a significant impact to, the educational process or the educational functions or operations of the classroom or school. If any of the foregoing occurs frequently or repeatedly, then the parent or guardian and the student will be required to take remedial measures so as to eliminate the behavior before the service animal will be allowed to again accompany the student at the school. Remedial measures may include muzzling, obtaining a refresher training course for both the service animal and the student, or other appropriate measures, the costs of which will be the sole responsibility of the parent or guardian.
The parent or guardian shall be responsible for any and all damage to the school and/or school district property, to personal property of others, and for any injuries to individuals caused by the service animal. The parent or guardian shall also indemnify, defend, and hold the school and the school district and their respective employees, agents, officers and officials harmless from and against any and all claims, demands, actions, suits, judgments, awards, damages, and costs arising on account of any acts or actions of the service animal.
FACULTY, STAFF AND STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES
School district and school faculty, staff and students will not pet a service animal, will not feed a service animal, and will not tease, harass, injure or deliberately startle a service animal. School district and school faculty and staff will not separate or attempt to separate a student from his or her service animal, except in circumstances of extreme emergency.
Adopted: March 10, 2010
Revised: November 8, 2010