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San Carlos ESD |  BP  6163.2  Instruction

Animals At School   

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The Governing Board recognizes that animals can be an effective teaching aid. In addition, instruction related to the care and treatment of animals teaches students a sense of responsibility and promotes the humane treatment of living creatures. The only time animals are allowed on schools grounds is when they are being used for educational or service purposes.

1. Animals Brought to School for Educational Purposes:

Animals may be brought to school for educational purposes, subject to rules and precautions specified in administrative regulations related to length of visit, number of animals, health, safety and sanitation. Staff shall ensure that these rules and precautions are observed so as to protect both the students and animals. Animals brought to school are the full responsibility of the owner or person in possession of the animal. The district assumes no liability for the safety of these and any other animals voluntarily brought to school.

2. Guide Dogs, Signal Dogs, and Service Dogs at School

Pursuant to Civil Code section 54.2, individuals with disabilities, including children with disabilities have the right to be accompanied by specially trained guide dogs, signal dogs, or service dogs in all public places including schools. If the sole function of the dog is to provide emotional support, comfort, therapy, companionship, therapeutic benefits, or to promote emotional well being, it shall not be considered to be a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog. The district assumes no liability and shall not be responsible for the provision of a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog. The user of the dog is responsible for its care and conduct at all times.

Guide dogs, signal dogs, and service dogs trained to provide assistance to individuals with disabilities may be transported in a school bus when accompanied by students with disabilities, by disabled teachers, and by individuals who train such dogs.

If an individual with a disability or an authorized trainer seeks to bring a service animal other than a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog, on school property or to a school-sponsored program or activity, the principal or designee shall make the determination of whether the individual may bring the service animal on a case-by-case basis.

Before an individual may bring a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog into a classroom, the principal or designee shall first provide written notification to all parents/guardians of students in the particular class, requesting information regarding whether their child has any known allergies, asthma, or other health-related conditions that may be affected by the dog's presence in the classroom. If the principal or designee determines that a student in the particular class has a health-related condition that would be affected by the presence of the dog, the principal or designee may deny the individual's request to bring the dog into the classroom. The principal or designee may also make alternative arrangements to accommodate the individual's request.

Any guide dog, signal dog or service dog brought to school by an individual with a disability shall be taken home the same day.

3. Presence of Animals on School Grounds

Other than for the purposes outlined in Sections 1 and 2 above (and with all the requirements met therein), no animals including pets may be brought on to school grounds by any individual at any time. This policy applies regardless of whether school is currently in session. If any animal that behaves aggressively or causes injury to staff or students, the animal must be immediately isolated and removed from the school premises until the situation is resolved.

Legal Reference:

EDUCATION CODE

233.5 Instruction in kindness to pets and humane treatment of living creatures

39839 Transportation of guide dogs, signal dogs, service dogs

51202 Instruction in personal and public health and safety

51540 Safe and humane treatment of animals at school

CIVIL CODE

54.1 Access to public places

54.2 Guide, signal, or service dogs, right to accompany

GOVERNMENT CODE

810-996.6 California Tort Claims Act, especially:

815 Liability for injuries generally; immunity of public entity

835 Conditions of liability

VEHICLE CODE

21113 Public grounds

CODE OF REGULATIONS, TITLE 13

1216 Transportation of property

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 20

1400-1482 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 29

794 Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504

CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS, TITLE 28

35.104 Definitions

35.136 Service animals

COURT DECISIONS

Sullivan v. Vallejo City USD, (1990) 731 F.Supp. 947

Management Resources:

FEDERAL REGISTER

Rules and Regulations, September 15, 2010, Vol. 75, Number 178, pages 56164-56236

CSBA PUBLICATIONS

Indoor Air Quality: Governing Board Actions for Creating Healthy School Environments, Policy Brief, July 2008

Asthma Management in the Schools, Policy Brief, March 2008

WEB SITES:

CSBA: http://www.csba.org

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: http://www.aspca.org

Humane Society of the United States: http://www.hsus.org

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr

Policy SAN CARLOS SCHOOL DISTRICT

adopted: June 25, 2015 San Carlos, California