Ch. 37: Removal of a Disruptive Student

Chapter 37 of the Texas Education Code (TEC) gives teachers the authority to remove disruptive students from their classrooms. The law allows teachers two types of removals: a discretionary removal and a mandatory removal.

A mandatory removal requires the removal of a student who exhibits serious types of behavior as identified in TEC 37.006 and 37.007 that require removal from the campus to either a district alternative education placement (DAEP) program or expulsion. It is important to note that these are not simple misbehaviors; rather, they are offenses that threaten or cause egregious harm to a person or property. When a student engages in this type of behavior, they need to be removed from your classroom immediately.

Discretionary removals may require additional documentation and steps as they rely on an educator’s discretion. They will also vary based on tolerance levels for appropriate behavior. As always, contact our office and connect with your HFT staff Rep. to get advice and counsel when dealing with Ch. 37 options.

Removal of a Disruptive Student (Texas Education Code §37.002)

(a) A teacher may send a student to the campus behavior coordinator’s office to maintain effective discipline in the classroom. The campus behavior coordinator shall respond by employing appropriate discipline management techniques consistent with the student code of conduct adopted under Section 37.001 that can reasonably be expected to improve the student’s behavior before returning the student to the classroom. If the student’s behavior does not improve, the campus behavior coordinator shall employ alternative discipline management techniques, including any progressive interventions designated as the responsibility of the campus behavior coordinator in the student code of conduct.

(b) A teacher may remove from class a student:

(1) who has been documented by the teacher to repeatedly interfere with the teacher’s ability to communicate effectively with the students in the class or with the ability of the student’s classmates to learn; or

(2) whose behavior the teacher determines is so unruly, disruptive, or abusive that it seriously interferes with the teacher’s ability to communicate effectively with the students in the class or with the ability of the student’s classmates to learn.

(c) If a teacher removes a student from class under Subsection (b), the principal may place the student into another appropriate classroom, into in-school suspension, or into a disciplinary alternative education program as provided by Section 37.008 . The principal may not return the student to that teacher’s class without the teacher’s consent unless the committee established under Section 37.003 determines that such placement is the best or only alternative available. The terms of the removal may prohibit the student from attending or participating in school-sponsored or school-related activity.

(d) A teacher shall remove from class and send to the principal for placement in a disciplinary alternative education program or for expulsion, as appropriate, a student who engages in conduct described under Section 37.006 or 37.007 . The student may not be returned to that teacher’s class without the teacher’s consent unless the committee established under Section 37.003 determines that such placement is the best or only alternative available. If the teacher removed the student from class because the student has engaged in the elements of any offense listed in Section 37.006(a)(2)(B) or Section 37.007(a)(2)(A) or (b)(2)(C) against the teacher, the student may not be returned to the teacher’s class without the teacher’s consent. The teacher may not be coerced to consent.

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