GISD board approves threat assessment team
Graham ISD school board approved the establishment of a threat assessment team, a requirement mandated in Senate Bill 11 for all public school systems to help identify individuals who may pose a threat and making a response before a violent incident occurs.
According to information from GISD, the threat assessment process is a proactive and evidence based solution for identifying those who may pose a threat. Some behaviors listed in the SB 11 as harmful, threatening or violent include verbal threats, threats of self harm, bullying, cyberbullying, fighting, the use or possession of a weapon, sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating violence, stalking or assault.
Interventions listed in the bill which could result from the behavior are mental and health behavioral supports, in-school suspension, student expulsion or removal to an alternative education program or juvenile justice alternative education program.
One aspect required is for the superintendent of the district to make sure the members cover different areas such as mental health and substance use and emergency management.
“The purpose of this team, everybody has a level of expertise and you kind of see the function of that on that team (…), is to identify threats and make intervening decisions in case those things are necessary,” GISD Superintendent Sonny Cruse said.
Under SB 11, the team will make assessments and report, “Individuals who make threats of violence or exhibit harmful, threatening, or violent behavior,” in accordance with the local policies and procedures adopted. The team must also gather and analyze data in order to determine the risk level and where intervention should occur such as for mental health assessment, the implementation of escalation procedures or other areas.
The team cannot provide mental health care services though to a student under 18-years-old, unless they receive written consent from the parent or guardian, according to SB 11. The superintendent will immediately contact the parent or guardian upon a determination by the team that the student poses a serious risk of violent to themselves or others.
For the rest of the story, see the Saturday, Oct. 12 edition of The Graham Leader.