Iowa School Discipline Laws & Regulations: School-based Behavioral Health Programs

Discipline Compendium

Iowa School Discipline Laws & Regulations: School-based Behavioral Health Programs

Category: Prevention, Behavioral Interventions, and Supports
Subcategory: School-based Behavioral Health Programs
State: Iowa

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LAWS

280A.1. Definitions.

As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:

3. "Behavioral health screening" or "screening" means a screening and assessment performed using a universal behavioral health screening and assessment tool, approved for use by the department of education in consultation with the department of public health and the department of human services, to identify factors that place children at higher risk for behavioral health conditions, to determine appropriate treatment or intervention, and to identify the need for referral for appropriate services.

4. "Behavioral health services" means services provided by a health care professional operating within the scope of the health care professional's practice which address mental, emotional, medical, or behavioral conditions, illnesses, diseases, or problems.

280A.2. Behavioral health screenings and assessments in school settings.

1.a. A school district, an accredited nonpublic school, or an area education agency may contract with a mental health professional or a nationally accredited behavioral health care organization to provide behavioral health screenings to students in person.

b. (1) A behavioral health screening may be conducted following provision of written consent by the student's parent or guardian for the student to participate in such screening.

(2) The consent shall also allow for the disclosure of the results of such screenings to the school district, accredited nonpublic school, or area education agency, if the mental health professional believes there is a credible threat to the health and safety of the student or others.

2. If a mental health professional conducts an initial behavioral health screening on the premises of a public school, an accredited nonpublic school, or an area education agency and determines that a student should be referred for additional behavioral health services, all of the following shall apply:

a. The mental health professional shall notify the parent or guardian of the student of the results of the screening.

b. The mental health professional may notify the student's primary care provider following provision of written consent by the student's parent or guardian. If a student does not have a primary care provider, the mental health professional may provide a listing of local primary care providers to the student's parent or guardian.

280A.3. Establishment of provider-patient relationship for services provided via telehealth in a school setting.

1. A mental health professional who provides services via telehealth in a public school, an accredited nonpublic school, or an area education agency shall establish a valid provider-patient relationship with the student who receives telehealth services.

2. The provider-patient relationship commences when all of the following conditions are met:

a. The student with the health-related matter with the consent of the student's parent or guardian seeks assistance from a mental health professional.

b. The mental health professional agrees to undertake diagnosis and treatment of the student.

c. The student's parent or guardian agrees to have the student treated by the mental health professional.

3. A valid provider-patient relationship may be established through any of the following means:

a. Through an in-person encounter which includes an in-person medical interview and physical examination conducted under the standard of care required for an in-person encounter.

b. Through consultation with a primary care provider who has an established relationship with the patient and who agrees to participate in or supervise the patient's care.

c. Through telehealth, if the standard of care does not require an in-person encounter, in accordance with evidence-based standards of practice and telehealth practice guidelines that address the clinical and technological aspects of telehealth, and the student's parent or guardian is present.

4. The parent or guardian of a student shall consent prior to the student receiving behavioral health services via telehealth under this chapter after a provider-patient relationship is established pursuant to this section. The school district shall maintain any such consent form completed by a parent or guardian.

280A.4. Behavioral health services provided via telehealth in a school setting.

1. A public school, accredited nonpublic school, or an area education agency may provide access to behavioral health services via telehealth on the premises of the public school, accredited nonpublic school, or area education agency. If a public school, an accredited nonpublic school, or an area education agency provides such access, the school or area education agency shall do all of the following:

a. Provide a secure, confidential, and private room for such services and the technology necessary to conduct telehealth services.

b. Maintain parent or guardian consent forms for the provision of such services. Consent forms shall be required for each academic year in which the student receives such services.

c. Maintain scheduling requests for student appointments for such services and provide the student access to the room by a school nurse or other appropriately trained school or area education agency employee.

d. Ensure that no school or area education agency employee is present in the same room as the student during the provision of such services.

e. Provide information to the student participating in telehealth services about how and to whom to report inappropriate behavior by a mental health professional.

f. Provide access to the student's parent or guardian to participate in any of the student's telehealth sessions.

2. The public school, accredited nonpublic school, or area education agency shall not have access to or handle any of the student's medical records or be responsible for billing for the telehealth services provided.

3. A mental health professional with prescribing authority who provides telehealth services in accordance with this section shall not prescribe any new medication to a student during a telehealth session. However, a mental health professional with prescribing authority may initiate new prescriptions, alter the dosage of an existing medication, or discontinue an existing medication for the treatment of the student's behavioral health condition after consultation with the student's parent or guardian.

4. The mental health professional shall notify the student's parent or guardian of the time and place for each scheduled telehealth session and specify the means available for the parent or guardian to participate in the session.

5. Protected health information, including but not limited to medical records and medical billing information, created by the mental health professional or primary care provider shall not be shared with or disclosed to a public school, accredited nonpublic school, or area education agency, unless disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the health or safety of the student or to a clearly identifiable person or persons and the mental health professional determines the student has the apparent intent and ability to carry out the threat.

6. A school district, an accredited nonpublic school, an area education agency, the board of directors of a school district or an area education agency, authorities in charge of the accredited nonpublic school, and employees of the school district, accredited nonpublic school or area education agency, shall not be liable for any injury arising from the provision of voluntary behavioral health screenings or behavioral health services in accordance with this chapter, provided such person has acted reasonably and in good faith and in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

REGULATIONS

281-66.1(279). Scope, purpose and general principles.

66.1(1) Scope. These rules apply to the provision of school-based youth services authorized in Iowa Code section 279.51(3) as amended by 1994 Iowa Acts, Senate File 2330, sections 47 to 49 and 60.

66.1(2) Purpose. The purpose of the school-based youth services education program is to enable children and youth, especially those with problems, to complete their education and to obtain skills that lead to employment, additional education, and to a mentally and physically healthy life.

66.1(3) General principles. School-based youth services programs (SBYSP), at a minimum, may be made available at the elementary school, middle school or high school level, to offer career development services, mental health and family counseling services and preventive and primary health care services in the context of the educational needs of the students. Only school districts or consortiums of districts in cooperation with other service providers may apply for funds to support such programs. The management of the programs may be by a school district or school district consortium or by a nonprofit service organization. All programs must be provided in or near schools to make services accessible to children and youth. Moreover, all programs must be designed for implementation over no less than a four-year period. The inclusion of abortion counseling or the dispensing of contraceptives with these programs is prohibited by Iowa Code section 279.51(3). Budgets for proposed programs will be funded by the state to a maximum of $200,000 per year. Local contributions of at least 20 percent of the total costs of the program are required.

281-66.2(279). Definitions.

For the purpose of this chapter the following definitions apply.

"School-based youth services" means career development assistance; job training and employment services; human services, including mental health and family counseling; primary health care services; day care; transportation; recreation services; parenting education; rehabilitation services; mentoring; family involvement assistance; and other services designed to assist school-age children to be able to succeed in school and be productive citizens upon leaving school.

281-66.3(279). Development of a program plan.

For the purpose of seeking approval for funding youth service programs, school districts shall submit plans approved by their board of directors to the department of education on a request for proposal (RFP) basis. RFPs will be issued within the limits of available funds during the school year preceding the year for which implementation is planned.

281-66.4(279). Program plan.

66.4(2) Identifying objectives. The following objectives shall be included in the program plan.

a. The establishment of a youth services education program located in or near an elementary school, middle school or high school that integrates multiple service providers with children or youth in need of services to assist them to succeed in education programs, to complete high school and be productive workers and contributors to the community.

b. Provisions for no less than the minimum education program as defined in Iowa Code section 256.11 and rule 281–12.5(256).

c. Flexibility of the education program to accommodate other community-based services such as mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment, and health care.

d. Career development activities including job training and employment services at the high school level.

e. Mental health and family counseling.

f. Family involvement activities.

g. Preventive and primary health care services.

h. Recreation services.

i. Mentoring.

j. Access to program including before and after school, weekend, and summer activity.

k. Personal skills development.

l. Other educational and noneducational services considered necessary to achieve the program plan.

66.4(3) Identification of the components and development of a schedule for the youth services program. At minimum, the following shall be included:

a. Description of the career development activities including job training and employment services; mental health and family counseling; family education and involvement services; preventive and primary health care services; recreation; mentoring; and personal skills development in the context of how these services and others will be provided in conjunction with the education program.

b. A schedule or timeline for the operation of the program taking into consideration day and evening accessibility, the number of days per week and the number of months per year the program will operate including 24-hour counseling services.

c. If applicable, descriptions of partnerships between public and private sectors to provide employment and training opportunities.

281-66.6(279). Responsibilities of area education agencies.

Area education agencies shall assist school districts in developing program plans and budgets for school-based youth services programs. Assistance may include, but is not limited to, the following:

66.6(1) Providing person power to coordinate planning between districts and other service providers and in writing grants.

66.6(2) Gathering and providing information for completion of program plans.

66.6(3) Identifying staff development resources and organizing staff training.

66.6(4) Identifying resources for establishing at least a 20 percent local contribution.

66.6(5) Participating in the advisory council.

66.6(6) Helping develop and implement recording procedures for evaluation of data and analysis of results.

66.6(7) Providing in-school support services.

66.6(8) Assisting with implementation of nondiscrimination measures.

281-66.7(279). Responsibilities of the department of education.

The department of education shall:

66.7(1) Provide guidelines and forms to school districts for submitting program plans.

66.7(2) Provide technical assistance to school districts, other education agencies and service providers in the development of plans.

66.7(3) Organize reviews and approval of written plans in at least three size categories of school districts including those below an enrollment of 1,200; between 1,200 and 4,999; and 5,000 and above. The process will give priority to need and plans that indicate high degrees of active participation by community-based youth organizations and agencies. Review criteria and a point system are contained in guidelines for school-based youth services programs.

66.7(4) Develop and administer a format for evaluation. An annual evaluation report shall be filed with the department of education by school districts following the close of each school year.

66.7(5) Provide technical assistance to school districts and other service providers in designing preservice and in-service training.

66.7(6) Consult with the departments of human services, human rights (division of criminal and juvenile justice planning), public health, economic development (division of job training and entrepreneurship assistance) and employment services (division of job services) to develop rules, administer programs, and monitor and evaluate programs.

66.7(7) Establish assistance through the F.I.N.E. Foundation and other foundations and public and private agencies in evaluating programs under this chapter and to provide support to school districts in implementing the funded programs.

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