State law requires districts to develop school emergency operations plans (EOPs) that do not include procedures for plan review or update.
2017 Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-804. Adoption of comprehensive plans.
(a) Each LEA shall adopt a comprehensive district-wide school safety plan and building-level school safety plans regarding crisis intervention, emergency response and emergency management. The plans shall be developed by a district-wide school safety team and a building-level school safety team established pursuant to this part and shall follow the template developed by the state-level safety team. An LEA having only one (1) school building shall develop a single building-level school safety plan, which shall also fulfill all requirements for development of a district-wide plan.
(b) Any meeting concerning school security, the district-wide school safety plans or the building-level school safety plans shall not be subject to the open meetings laws compiled in title 8, chapter 44. Though closed to the general public, reasonable notice shall be provided to the general public prior to such a meeting. The board shall not discuss or deliberate on any other issues or subjects during such a meeting.
(c) Each LEA shall provide to the local law enforcement agency with jurisdiction the LEA's plans regarding school security, district-wide school safety plans and building-level school safety plans, as well as information, records, and plans that are related to school security.
"The Tennessee School Safety Center was established...to assist all districts in the development and implementation of high-quality school emergency operations plans. The center will provide training and technical assistance to districts on developing and implementing school and district level multi-hazard emergency operations plans."
Rules of the Tennessee Department of Education 0520-01-03.03 ADMINISTRATION OF SCHOOLS.
(15) Multi-Hazard Emergency Operations Plans.
- (a) Each local school system shall have a multi-hazard emergency operations plan to include, but not be limited to, fire, tornado, earthquake, flood, bomb threat, and armed intrusion.
- (b) Each school shall practice emergency safety procedures.
- (c) Each local education agency having jurisdiction that lies entirely or partially within 100 miles of the New Madrid Fault Line shall implement earthquake preparedness drills in each of the schools administered by such local education agency. The Guidebook for Developing a School Earthquake Safety Program published by the Federal Emergency Management Agency shall serve as the model plan for local education agencies to consider when adopting plans for earthquake preparedness drills. Affected local education agencies shall review and consider the entire guidebook to assure that their schools provide the optimal safety conditions for their students.
- (d) Each school administered by a local education agency having jurisdiction that lies entirely or partially within 100 miles of the New Madrid Fault Line shall conduct at least two (2) earthquake preparedness drills every school year. A record of the earthquake preparedness drills, including the time and date, shall be kept in the respective schools and shall be made available upon request by the Department of Education.
- (e) Each school that utilizes a two-way communication system shall ensure teaches and other personnel are properly and adequately trained on the use of the system.
- (f) Alternate schools must maintain a two-way communication system.
Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) Act
"Each school facility and school district are required to have a comprehensive emergency operations plan developed in collaboration with local emergency response agencies... School district and school facility EOP templates are available."
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-1024. Instruction in school safety issues.
(a) In reviewing the lifetime wellness Standard, the department of education shall consider including instruction in current and appropriate school safety issues, to include drugs, alcohol, weapons, bomb threats, emergency evacuations and violent school incidents.
(b) The department is encouraged to collaborate with the University of Tennessee in developing school safety instructional materials and course objectives.
(c) The department shall review the United States department of homeland security's guidelines and other topically-relevant issues for inclusion in school safety programs.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-802. State-level safety team — Template for safety and emergency response plans.
(a) The commissioner of education shall establish a state-level safety team, which shall assist LEAs and schools with compliance with this part as reasonably necessary. As part of the assistance, the state-level safety team shall publish a template for use by districts in preparing their district-level safety plans and building-level emergency response plans, which template shall outline the responsibilities of the LEAs and individual schools in complying with this part. The state-level safety team shall regularly review and update the template.
(b) The commissioner shall appoint the members of the state-level safety team, including:
- (1) A representative of the department of safety;
- (2) A representative of the Tennessee bureau of investigation;
- (3) A representative of homeland security;
- (4) A representative of the department of mental health and substance abuse services;
- (5) A representative of the emergency medical services of the department of health;
- (6) A representative of the state board of education;
- (7) A representative of the Tennessee association of school resource officers; and
- (8) A representative of the department of intellectual and developmental disabilities.
(c) The commissioner may also appoint a representative from each of the following:
- (1) Directors of schools;
- (2) Members of local boards of education;
- (3) The Tennessee alternative education association;
- (4) Public school teachers;
- (5) The Tennessee association of mental health organizations;
- (6) School counselors and psychologists;
- (7) Parents of students enrolled in public schools;
- (8) Tennessee students between sixteen (16) and twenty-four (24) years of age; and
- (9) The Tennessee school health coalition.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-803. Direction of safety team.
The state-level safety team shall be directed by the director of the Tennessee school safety center established in § 49-6-4302.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-805. Template minimum requirements.
At a minimum, the template prepared by the state-level safety team shall include:
(1) The designation of an emergency response team;
(2) Policies and procedures for communication with law enforcement officials, parents and guardians in the event of emergencies and incidents of or threats of violence;
(3) Policies and procedures relating to school building security, including, where appropriate, the use of school resource officers, security devices or security procedures, and addressing, where appropriate, the use of the building by the public for events other than school activities and the impact the other use may have on building security;
(4) Procedures for assuring that crisis response and law enforcement officials have access to floor plans, blueprints, schematics or other maps of the school interior, school grounds and road maps of the immediate surrounding area;
(5) Procedures for coordination of the school safety plan with the resources available through the department of mental health and substance abuse services, the department of intellectual and developmental disabilities or a similar local agency to assure that the school has access to federal, state or local mental health resources in the event of a violent incident;
(6) Appropriate violence prevention and intervention strategies such as:
(A) Collaborative arrangements with state and local law enforcement officials, designed to ensure that school resource officers and other security personnel are adequately trained, including being trained to de-escalate potentially violent situations, and are effectively and fairly recruited;
(B) Dissemination of informative materials regarding the early detection and identification of potentially threatening behaviors and violent acts to teachers, administrators, school personnel, parents or guardians and students;
(C) Nonviolent conflict resolution training programs;
(D) Peer mediation programs and youth courts;
(E) Extended day and other school safety programs; and
(F) Comprehensive school counseling and mental health programs;
(7) Policies and procedures for annual school safety training for all students, teachers, and other school personnel; and
(8) Policies and procedures for the safe evacuation of all students, teachers, other school personnel and visitors to the school in the event of a serious violent incident or other emergency.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-808. Hearings on safety plans — Filing of plan and amendments — Confidentiality.
(a) Each LEA shall make each district-wide and building-level school safety plan available for public comment at least thirty (30) days prior to its adoption; provided, that only a summary of each building-level emergency response plan shall be made available for public comment. The district-wide and building-level plans may be adopted by the LEA only after at least one (1) public hearing that provides for the participation of school personnel, parents, students and any other interested parties.
(b) Each LEA shall file a copy of its district-wide comprehensive safety plan with the commissioner and all amendments to the plan shall be filed with the commissioner no later than thirty (30) days after their adoption. A copy of each building-level safety plan and any amendments to the plan shall be filed with the appropriate local law enforcement agency and with the department of safety within thirty (30) days of its adoption.
(c) Building-level emergency response plans shall be confidential and shall not be subject to any open or public records requirements.
(d) If the LEA fails to file the plan as required by subsection (b), the commissioner may withhold state funds, in an amount determined by the commissioner, from the LEA until the LEA is in compliance.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-810. Annual report to governor and general assembly.
Annually on or before February 1 of each year, the commissioner of education shall report to the governor and the general assembly on implementation of and compliance with this part.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-811. Grant funding.
An LEA may seek grant funding from the school safety center to assist with compliance with this part according to § 49-6-4302.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-812. Consistency with harassment and bullying policies.
Each LEA shall ensure that the district-wide safety plans and building-level emergency response plans required by this part are developed in such a manner as to be consistent with the district's harassment and bullying policies developed pursuant to § 49-6-4503.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-813. County and municipal appropriations.
The legislative body of any county or municipality may appropriate funds for the purpose of providing resources for district-wide school safety plans, building-level school safety plans and district-wide school safety teams. Federal, state and local funds designated for such purposes may be used to provide funds for the purpose of providing resources for district-wide school safety plans, building-level school safety plans and district-wide school safety teams.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-6-814. Rules and regulations.
The commissioner of education is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to effectuate the purposes of this part and § 49-6-4301(c)-(e). All such rules and regulations shall be promulgated in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5.