Printed on September 25, 2017, 10:16 am
Safety and Security
TCATs, Community Colleges, Universities
To maintain a safe educational and working environment for students and employees by creating and maintaining campus behavioral intervention teams authorized and equipped to assess, intervene, and monitor potentially disruptive student and employee behavior.
- Creation of Behavioral Intervention Team
- It is the policy of the Tennessee Board of Regents that the president or director of each institution shall appoint a Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT). The purpose of the BIT is to provide caring, preventive early intervention with students and employees whose behavior is disruptive or concerning and additionally to consult with faculty, staff, and students reporting behaviors of concern.
- The BIT is a tool to assist in providing a safe academic environment for faculty, staff, and students.
- The BIT is not punitive and is not a disciplinary board but rather serves as the central point of contact for threat assessments involving students and employees.
- The BIT shall be charged with developing comprehensive fact-based assessments of students and employees who may present a threat to the institution, its employees, students, and visitors and shall be empowered to take timely and appropriate action, consistent with TBR and institutional policy as well as applicable law.
- At the discretion of the president or director, the BIT may include representatives from the institution’s police department or safety and security department, Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, Human Resources, medical, psychological and counseling professionals.
- The BIT may be advised by the institution’s legal counsel.
- The BIT shall meet, at a minimum, once per semester and thereafter as needed.
- Each institution shall create and publish a policy, consistent with this system policy, regarding the institution’s procedures for implementing its BIT.
- It is the intention of the Board to require, at a minimum, the creation of a BIT.
- In addition, institutions are encouraged to create broader threat assessment teams to assess and address potential risks and threats posed by others who are not students or employees.
- The BIT may also function as the threat assessment team, or an institution may set up a threat assessment team separate from the BIT.
- Institutions may choose the structure that works best for them, as long as they are at least performing the functions of a BIT as described above.
- Identifying and Reporting Risks
- All individuals are encouraged to be alert to the possibility of campus disruptions, particularly acts of violence.
- Employees and students shall place safety as their highest concern and shall report all acts and threats of violence.
- All reports will be handled in a confidential manner, with information released only on a need-to-know basis within the campus community and in accordance with federal and state laws and regulations.
- This policy strictly prohibits retaliation against any person who, in good faith, reports acts or threats of violence pursuant to this or any other applicable law or policy.
- Every reasonable effort will be made to protect the safety and anonymity of anyone who comes forward with concerns about a threat or act of violence.
- Each campus shall create and publicize procedures for reporting incidents to the BIT.
- Campuses are encouraged to provide a mechanism by which a person may make a report to the BIT anonymously.
- Confidentiality of Records
- BIT members may provide each other with information about a student being monitored by the BIT as is necessary to protect the health, safety, and privacy of the student or other persons and to generate a recommended course of action in accordance with applicable legal and professional standards of confidentiality, including the release of information pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA).
- Confidentiality of information and records considered by the BIT shall be maintained in accordance with all applicable federal and state laws and TBR and institutional policies.
- All members of an institutional BIT shall attend relevant training at least on an annual basis.
- Such training shall include information regarding the role of the BIT on campus, reporting procedures, confidentiality requirements, policies and laws regarding student discipline, due process, and the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the threat assessment model utilized by the institution.
- University Policies
- Each university in the TBR system shall adopt a policy that addresses this subject that is consistent with the applicable state and federal laws.
NEW Policy approved at Board Meeting, March 31, 2017.