TITLE 19. EDUCATION

PART 2. TEXAS EDUCATION AGENCY

CHAPTER 103. HEALTH AND SAFETY

SUBCHAPTER DD. COMMISSIONER'S RULES CONCERNING VIDEO SURVEILLANCE OF CERTAIN SPECIAL EDUCATION SETTINGS

19 TAC §103.1301, §103.1303

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) proposes amendment to §103.1301 and new §103.1303, concerning video surveillance of certain special education settings. The proposed amendment and new section would reflect requirements in Senate Bill (SB) 1398, 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2017.

SB 507, 84th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2015, created Texas Education Code (TEC), §29.022, and required video surveillance to promote the safety of students receiving special education and related services in certain self-contained classrooms and other special education settings.

SB 1398, 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2017, amended TEC, §29.022, providing clarification on who may make a request for cameras, on how a request must be made, on how local educational agencies (LEAs) must respond to requests for cameras, and on who may review a recording made under TEC, §29.022, and under what circumstances this can occur. TEC, §29.022(l), includes timelines for having cameras in operation following a request. TEC, §29.022(m)-(o), includes the right to ask the TEA to expedite a review of 1) a school district's denial for cameras; 2) a school district's request to extend the timeline to put the cameras in operation; and 3) a school district's determination not to release a recording. TEC, §29.022(p), requires the commissioner to adopt rules to address requests for expedited reviews and related appeals. Finally, TEC, §29.022, provides clarification of terms used in the statute.

The proposed amendment to §103.1301, Video Surveillance of Certain Special Education Settings, would clarify and add definitions, refer to the process to appeal local decisions, and provide additional details relating to policies and procedures for the placement, operation, and maintenance of video cameras.

Proposed new §103.1303, Commissioner's Review of Actions Concerning Video Cameras in Special Education Settings, would establish provisions relating to the applicability, denial of a request, and extension of time for hearings and reviews of actions taken relating to the denial of a request for placement of a video camera or a determination not to release a video.

TEC, §29.022, as amended by SB 1398, requires the TEA to collect data related to requests for cameras and how LEAs responded to the requests; however, the proposed amendment and new rule would not impose any new or additional reporting requirements. The proposed amendment and new rule would require school districts and charter schools to adopt and/or amend policies and procedures to implement SB 1398.

FISCAL NOTE. Penny Schwinn, chief deputy commissioner for academics, has determined that for the first five-year period the amendment and new section are in effect, there will be no additional costs for state or local government as a result of enforcing or administering the amendment and new section. Potential costs to school districts and open-enrollment charter schools resulting from SB 1398 will vary depending on the number of self-contained and other special education settings in the district or charter school and on the number of cameras necessary to adequately cover each classroom. There is no effect on local economy for the first five years that the proposed amendment and new section are in effect; therefore, no local employment impact statement is required under Texas Government Code, §2001.022. The proposed amendment and new section do not impose a cost on regulated persons and, therefore, are not subject to Texas Government Code, §2001.0045.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT. The TEA has determined that the proposed amendment and new section do have a government growth impact pursuant to Texas Government Code, §2001.0221. The proposal creates a new regulation. TEC, §29.022, as amended by SB 1398, includes the right to ask the TEA to expedite a review of a school district's denial for cameras, a school district's request to extend the timeline to put the cameras in operation, and a school district's determination not to release a recording. The TEA must adopt rules to address requests for expedited reviews and related appeals. Proposed new §103.1303 is in response to the new requirements.

PUBLIC BENEFIT/COST NOTE. Ms. Schwinn has determined that for each year of the first five years the amendment and new section are in effect the public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing proposed amendment and new section would be clarification of certain requirements in SB 1398. There is no anticipated economic cost to persons who are required to comply with the proposed amendment and new section.

ECONOMIC IMPACT STATEMENT AND REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ANALYSIS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES, MICROBUSINESSES, AND RURAL COMMUNITIES. There is no direct adverse economic impact for small businesses, microbusinesses, and rural communities; therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis, specified in Texas Government Code, §2006.002, is required.

REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT. The public comment period on the proposal begins December 22, 2017, and ends January 22, 2018. Comments on the proposal may be submitted to Cristina De La Fuente-Valadez, Rulemaking, Texas Education Agency, 1701 North Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701. Comments may also be submitted electronically to rules@tea.texas.gov. In addition, a public hearing to solicit testimony and input on the proposed amendment and new rule will be held at 8:30 a.m. on January 8, 2018, in Room 1-104, William B. Travis Building, 1701 North Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701. Anyone wishing to testify at the hearing must sign in between 8:15 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. on the day of the hearing. The hearing will conclude once all who have signed in have been given the opportunity to comment.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY. The amendment and new section are proposed under Texas Education Code (TEC), §29.022, as amended by SB 1398, 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2017, which requires video surveillance in certain special education settings to promote student safety; TEC, §29.022(k), which authorizes the commissioner to adopt rules to implement and administer TEC, §29.022, including rules regarding the special education settings to which the section applies; and TEC, §29.022, as amended by SB 1398, 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2017, which authorizes the commissioner to adopt rules to address requests for expedited reviews and related appeals.

CROSS REFERENCE TO STATUTE. The amendment and new section implement Texas Education Code (TEC), §29.022, as amended by SB 1398, 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 2017.

§103.1301.Video Surveillance of Certain Special Education Settings.

(a) Requirement to implement. In [Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, in] order to promote student safety, on written request by a parent, school district board of trustees, governing body of an open-enrollment charter school, principal or assistant principal, [trustee,] or staff member, as authorized by Texas Education Code (TEC) §29.022(a-1), a school district or an open-enrollment charter school must provide video equipment to campuses in accordance with TEC [Texas Education Code (TEC)] , §29.022, and this section. Campuses that receive video equipment must place, operate, and maintain video cameras in self-contained classrooms or other special education settings in accordance with TEC, §29.022, and this section.

(b) Definitions. For purposes of TEC, §29.022, and this section, the following terms have the following meanings.

(1) Parent means a person described in TEC, §26.002, whose child receives special education and related services in one or more [for at least 50 percent of the instructional day in a] self-contained classrooms [classroom] or other special education settings [setting]. Parent also means a student who receives special education and related services in one or more [for at least 50 percent of the instructional day in a] self-contained classrooms [classroom] or other special education settings [setting ] and who is 18 years of age or older or whose disabilities of minority have been removed for general purposes under Texas Family Code, Chapter 31, unless the student has been determined to be incompetent or the student's rights have been otherwise restricted by a court order.

(2) Staff member means a teacher, a related service provider, a paraprofessional, a counselor, or an educational aide assigned to work in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting [an employee of the school district or open-enrollment charter school].

[(3) Trustee means a member of a school district's board of trustees or a member of an open-enrollment charter school's governing body.]

(3) [(4)] Open-enrollment charter school means a charter granted to a charter holder under TEC, §12.101 or §12.152, identified with its own county district number.

(4) [(5)] Self-contained classroom means a classroom on a regular school campus (i.e., a campus that serves students in general education and students in special education) of a school district or an open-enrollment charter school, including a room attached to the classroom used for time-out, but not including a classroom that is a resource room instructional arrangement under TEC, §42.151, in which a majority of the students in regular attendance are provided special education and related services and have one of the following instructional arrangements/settings described in the student attendance accounting handbook adopted under §129.1025 of this title (relating to Adoption by Reference: Student Attendance Accounting Handbook):

(A) self-contained (mild/moderate/severe) regular campus;

(B) full-time early childhood (preschool program for children with disabilities) special education setting;

(C) residential care and treatment facility--self-contained (mild/moderate/severe) regular campus;

(D) residential care and treatment facility--full-time early childhood special education setting;

(E) off home campus--self-contained (mild/moderate/severe) regular campus; or

(F) off home campus--full-time early childhood special education setting.

(5) [(6)] Other special education setting means a classroom on a separate campus (i.e., a campus that serves only students who receive special education and related services) of a school district or open-enrollment charter school, including a room attached to the classroom or setting used for time-out, in which a majority of the students in regular attendance are provided special education and related services and have one of the following instructional arrangements/settings described in the student attendance accounting handbook adopted under §129.1025 of this title:

(A) residential care and treatment facility--separate campus; or

(B) off home campus--separate campus.

(6) [(7)] Video camera means a video surveillance camera with audio recording capabilities.

(7) [(8)] Video equipment means one or more video cameras and any technology and equipment needed to place, operate, and maintain video cameras as required by TEC, §29.022, and this section. Video equipment also means any technology and equipment needed to store and access video recordings as required by TEC, §29.022, and this section.

(8) [(9)] Incident means an event or circumstance that:

(A) involves alleged "abuse" or "neglect," as those terms are described in Texas Family Code, §261.001, of a student by an employee of the school district or charter school or alleged "physical abuse" or "sexual abuse," as those terms are described in Texas Family Code, §261.410, of a student by another student; and

(B) allegedly occurred in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting in which video surveillance under TEC, §29.022, and this section is conducted.

(9) School business day means a day that campus or school district administrative offices are open.

(10) Time-out has the meaning assigned by TEC, §37.0021.

(c) Exclusions. A school district or open-enrollment charter school is not required to provide video equipment to a campus of another district or charter school or to a nonpublic school. In addition, the Texas School for the Deaf, the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, the Texas Juvenile Justice Department, and any other state agency that provides special education and related services to students are not subject to the requirements in TEC, §29.022, and this section.

(d) Use of funds. A school district or open-enrollment charter school may solicit and accept gifts, grants, and donations from any person to implement the requirements in TEC, §29.022, and this section. A district or charter school is not permitted to use Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part B, funds or state special education funds to implement the requirements of TEC, §29.022, and this section.

(e) Dispute resolution. The special education dispute resolution procedures in 34 Code of Federal Regulations, §§300.151-300.153 and 300.504-300.515, do not apply to complaints alleging that a school district or open-enrollment charter school has failed to comply with TEC, §29.022, and/or this section. Complaints alleging violations of TEC, §29.022, and/or this section must be addressed through the district's or charter school's local grievance procedures or other dispute resolution channels. To the extent that appeals from local grievance processes or other dispute resolution channels regarding alleged violations of TEC, §29.022, are permissible, the provisions of §103.1303 of this title (relating to Commissioner's Review of Actions Concerning Video Cameras in Special Education Settings) control.

(f) Regular school year and extended school year services. TEC, §29.022, and this section apply to video surveillance during the regular school year and during extended school year services.

(g) Policies and procedures. Each school district board of trustees and open-enrollment charter school governing body must adopt written policies relating to the placement, operation, and maintenance of video cameras [surveillance] under TEC, §29.022, and this section. At a minimum, the policies must include:

(1) a statement that video surveillance is for the purpose of promoting student safety in certain self-contained classrooms and other special education settings;

(2) information on how a person may appeal an action by the district or school that the person believes to be in violation of this section or a policy adopted in accordance with this section, including the appeals process under TEC, §7.057;

(3) a requirement that the district or school provide a response to a request made under this section not later than the seventh school business day after receipt of the request by the person to whom it must be submitted under TEC, §29.022(a-3), that authorizes the request or states the reason for denying the request;

(4) except as provided by paragraph (6) of this subsection, a requirement that a school or a campus begin operation of a video camera in compliance with this section not later than the 45th school business day, or the first school day after the 45th school business day if that day is not a school day, after the request is authorized unless the Texas Education Agency (TEA) grants an extension of time;

(5) a provision permitting the parent of a student whose admission, review, and dismissal committee has determined that the student's placement for the following school year will be in a classroom or other special education setting in which a video camera may be placed under this section to make a request for the video camera by the later of:

(A) the date on which the current school year ends; or

(B) the 10th school business day after the date of the placement determination by the admission, review, and dismissal committee;

(6) if a request is made by a parent in compliance with paragraph (5) of this subsection, unless the TEA grants an extension of time, a requirement that a school or campus begin operation of a video camera in compliance with this section not later than the later of:

(A) the 10th school day of the fall semester; or

(B) the 45th school business day, or the first school day after the 45th school business day if that day is not a school day, after the date the request is made;

(7) [(2)] the procedures for requesting video surveillance and the procedures for responding to a request for video surveillance;

(8) [(3)] the procedures for providing advanced written notice to the campus staff and the parents of the students assigned to a self-contained classroom or other special education setting that video and audio surveillance will be conducted in the classroom or setting;

(9) [(4)] a requirement that video cameras be operated at all times during the instructional day when students are present in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting in which video cameras are placed;

(10) [(5)] a statement regarding the personnel who will have access to video equipment or video recordings for purposes of operating and maintaining the equipment or recordings;

(11) [(6)] a requirement that a campus continue to operate and maintain any video camera placed in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting for as long as the classroom or setting continues to satisfy the requirements in TEC, §29.022(a);

(12) [(7)] a requirement that video cameras placed in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting be capable of recording video and audio of all areas of the classroom or setting, except bathrooms and areas in which a student's clothes are changed. Incidental coverage of the inside of a bathroom or any area of the classroom or other special education setting in which a student's clothes are changed is permitted only to the extent that such coverage is the result of the layout of the classroom or setting [that no video surveillance may be conducted of the inside of a bathroom or other area used for toileting or diapering a student or removing or changing a student's clothes];

(13) [(8)] a statement that video recordings must be retained for at least three [six] months after the date the video was recorded;

(14) [(9)] a statement that the regular or continual monitoring of video is prohibited and that video recordings must not be used for teacher evaluation or monitoring or for any purpose other than the promotion of student safety;

(15) [(10)] at the school district's or open-enrollment charter school's discretion, a requirement that campuses post a notice at the entrance of any self-contained classroom or other special education setting in which video cameras are placed stating that video and audio surveillance are conducted in the classroom or setting;

(16) [(11)] the procedures for reporting a complaint alleging that an incident occurred in a self-contained classroom or other special education setting in which video surveillance under TEC, §29.022, and this section is conducted;

(17) [(12)] the local grievance procedures for filing a complaint alleging violations of TEC, §29.022, and/or this section; and

(18) [(13)] a statement that video recordings made under TEC, §29.022, and this section are confidential and a description of the limited circumstances under which the recordings may be viewed.

(h) Confidentiality of video recordings. A video recording made under TEC, §29.022, and this section is confidential and may only be viewed by the following individuals, to the extent not limited by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) or other law:

(1) a staff member or a parent of a student involved in an incident described in subsection (b)(8) [(b)(9)] of this section that is documented by a video recording for which a complaint has been reported to the district, charter school, or [charter] school;

(2) appropriate Texas Department of Family and Protective Services personnel as part of an investigation under Texas Family Code, §261.406;

(3) a peace officer, school nurse, district or school administrator trained in de-escalation and restraint techniques as provided by commissioner rule, or a human resources staff member designated by the school district's board of trustees or open-enrollment charter school's governing body in response to a complaint or an investigation of an incident described in subsection (b)(8) [(b)(9)] of this section; or

(4) appropriate Texas Education Agency or State Board for Educator Certification personnel or agents as part of an investigation.

(i) Exception to restrictions on viewing. A contractor or employee performing job duties relating to the installation, operation, or maintenance of video equipment or the retention of video recordings who incidentally views a video recording does not violate subsection (h) of this section.

(j) [(i)] Child abuse and neglect reporting. If a person described in subsection (h)(3) or (4) of this section views a video recording and has cause to believe that the recording documents possible abuse or neglect of a child under Texas Family Code, Chapter 261, the person must submit a report to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services or other authority in accordance with the local policy adopted under §61.1051 of this title (relating to Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect) and Texas Family Code, Chapter 261.

(k) [(j)] Disciplinary actions and legal proceedings. If a person described in subsection (h)(2), (3), or (4) of this section views a video recording and believes that it documents a possible violation of school district, open-enrollment charter school, or campus policy, the person may allow access to the recording to appropriate legal and human resources personnel of the district or charter school to the extent not limited by FERPA or other law. A recording believed to document a possible violation of school district, open-enrollment charter school, or campus policy relating to the neglect or abuse of a student may be used in a disciplinary action against district or charter school personnel and must be released in a legal proceeding at the request of a parent of the student involved in the incident documented by the recording. A recording believed to document a possible violation of school district, open-enrollment charter school, or campus policy relating to the neglect or abuse of a student must be released for viewing by the district or charter school employee who is the subject of the disciplinary action at the request of the employee.

(l) [(k)] Access rights. Subsections [(i) and] (j) and (k) of this section do not limit the access of a student's parent to an educational record of the student under FERPA or other law. To the extent any provisions in TEC, §29.022, and this section conflict with FERPA or other federal law, federal law prevails.

§103.1303.Commissioner's Review of Actions Concerning Video Cameras in Special Education Settings.

(a) Applicability. This section shall apply to all hearings and reviews of actions taken under Texas Education Code (TEC), §29.022, concerning school districts. To the extent that this section conflicts with any other sections governing hearings before the commissioner of education, including Chapter 157, Subchapter AA of this title (relating to General Provisions for Hearings Before the Commissioner of Education) and Subchapter BB of this title (relating to Specific Appeals to the Commissioner), this section shall prevail.

(b) Denial of request. The following standards and procedures apply to a denial of a request for the placement of a video camera or the determination not to release a video to a person under TEC, §29.022.

(1) Once a request for placement of a video camera or a request to release a video is administratively denied under TEC, §29.022(i) or (l)(2), the requestor must exhaust administrative remedies through the school district's grievance process before the denial of the request is appealed to the commissioner.

(2) After local remedies are exhausted, the requestor may appeal the denial to the commissioner under TEC, §7.057.

(3) The following timelines are established.

(A) A petition for review shall be filed with the commissioner within 20 days of the decision of the board of trustees being first communicated to the requestor or requestor's counsel, whichever occurs first. The petition for review shall be made in accordance with §157.1073(c) of this title (relating to Hearings Brought Under Texas Education Code, §7.057) and may include a request for expedited review.

(B) The district's answer and local record shall comply with §157.1052(b) and (c) of this title (relating to Answers) and §157.1073(d) of this title and shall be filed with the commissioner within 20 days of the school district receiving notification from the commissioner of the appeal.

(4) A request for expedited review is governed by the following.

(A) A request for expedited review shall be filed with the commissioner within 20 days of the school district receiving notification from the commissioner that a petition for review has been filed.

(B) If no request for an expedited review is timely made, the case will proceed according to the procedures for an appeal under TEC, §7.057.

(C) A school district, parent, staff member, or administrator may request an expedited review. Any request for an expedited review shall include the names, telephone numbers, and addresses of all interested parties to the request. Interested parties are all persons who brought the grievance and all persons who testified or made written statements during the grievance process.

(D) If a timely request for expedited review is filed, the commissioner shall notify all interested persons that an expedited review has been filed and of their right to file arguments in accordance with the briefing schedule. All interested parties shall receive all filings in the case. The commissioner shall send to all interested parties the petition for review, the request for expedited review, and all other filings in the case as of the time the request for expedited review is filed. All persons filing any document in the case after the commissioner has provided to the interested parties the documents on file at the time the request for an expedited review is made shall provide each interested party, the petitioner, and the respondent with a copy of the additional filing, which shall be sent by the filing party to each interested party by the same method as the filing is sent to the commissioner.

(E) All briefing and exceptions to the proposal for decision and replies to the same in a case where expedited review is requested shall have citations to the record to support all alleged facts and shall have appropriate citations to legal authority to support all legal claims.

(F) If a request for expedited review is timely filed, the commissioner will establish a briefing schedule.

(G) All interested parties who are in favor of granting the request for expedited review shall file briefing at the time specified for the petitioner.

(H) All interested persons who are opposed to granting the request for expedited review shall file briefing at the same time as the respondent.

(I) Briefing is not limited to the issues specifically raised in the pleadings in the case. However, no new arguments may be raised in the reply briefs. Reply briefs may contain new citations to the record and legal authority.

(J) A proposal for decision shall be issued which applies the substantial evidence standard to the local record. A proposal for decision shall constitute the preliminary judgment in an appeal.

(K) Exceptions to a proposal for decision shall be filed within 10 days of the issuance of the proposal for decision.

(L) Replies to exceptions to a proposal for decision shall be made within 20 days of the issuance of the proposal for decision and shall respond to the arguments made in the exceptions to the proposal for decision.

(M) If no exceptions to the proposal for decision are timely filed, the commissioner will issue a decision in the case.

(N) If exceptions to the proposal for decision are timely filed, the commissioner will issue a decision in the case after the time for replies to exceptions to a proposal for decision has passed.

(O) A decision of the commissioner under this subsection is appealable under TEC, §7.057(d).

(c) Extension of time. A request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera under TEC, §29.002, shall be made and decided using the following procedures.

(1) Any request by a school district for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera shall be filed with the commissioner prior to the 45th school business day after a request to begin operating a video camera is received.

(2) A request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera shall specify why an extension of time should be granted. The request shall include affidavits supporting any factual claims made in the request and reference any legal authority as to why the request should be granted. The request may include a request for expedited review. The request shall name the individual who requested the installation of cameras and provide the individual's address and telephone number. Immediately following the individual's address and telephone number there shall appear in bold type: "You have been identified as the individual who requested the operation of a video camera that is the subject of this request to the commissioner of education to extend the statutory timeline. You may but are not required to participate in the proceedings before the commissioner concerning the school district's request for an extension of time. It is entirely up to you whether and to what extent you wish to participate in these proceedings. The procedures governing these proceedings are found at 19 Texas Administrative Code §103.1303(c) and Texas Education Code, §29.022."

(3) A request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera shall list the names, telephone numbers, and addresses of all interested parties to the request. All interested parties include all parents of students in the classroom or other special education setting for which a video camera has been requested and all staff who provided services in a class for which a video camera has been requested.

(4) All documents in a case shall be filed with the Division of Hearings and Appeals, Texas Education Agency, 1701 N. Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701, facsimile number (512) 475-3662. Documents can be filed by mail, delivery, or facsimile. All documents must be actually received by the Division of Hearings and Appeals by the date specified in this section. The mailbox rule does not apply to filings in this case. Filing by facsimile is strongly encouraged.

(5) All filings in a case shall be sent to the school district, the individual who initially requested the installation of the cameras, and all interested parties who have filed a request to receive documents filed in this case by the same method as the request is filed with the commissioner. Due to the requirements of Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, the names, telephone numbers, and addresses of parents and other publicly identifiable student information may not be given out to the interested parties. The copies of the filings sent to interested parties shall redact all publicly identifiable student information.

(6) Any response to a request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera shall be filed with the commissioner by an interested party within 20 days of the filing of the request. If no response to the request is timely filed, the commissioner shall issue a final decision within 30 days of the filing of the request.

(7) A response to a request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera shall specify why an extension of time should or should not be granted. The response shall include affidavits supporting any factual claims made in the request and reference any legal authority as to why the request should or should not be granted. The response may include a request for expedited review.

(8) A request for expedited review must be filed with the commissioner within 20 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera. If a request for expedited review is made, all interested parties shall be notified that they have been identified as interested parties in the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera. In particular the interested parties will be informed that it is their choice whether or not to participate in the proceedings before the commissioner, that it is entirely up to them to determine to what extent they wish to participate in the proceedings, that the procedures governing these proceedings are found in this subsection and TEC, §29.022, and that upon their written request filed with the commissioner they will be sent all filings in this case.

(9) If a request for an expedited review is not made, the commissioner shall issue a final decision within 45 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera, unless the commissioner determines that an evidentiary hearing would be helpful in deciding the issues raised. If the commissioner decides to hold an evidentiary hearing, the commissioner shall establish the timelines and procedures to be used. Whether to conduct the hearing by telephone or other electronic methods will be considered.

(10) If a request for expedited review is made, the following procedures shall be followed.

(A) Any reply by the school district to any response to the request shall be filed with the commissioner within 25 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera.

(B) A preliminary judgment shall be made by the commissioner within 35 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera.

(C) Any interested party or the school district may file objections to preliminary judgment within 40 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera.

(D) Any reply to an objection to a preliminary judgment must be filed within 45 days of the filing of a request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera.

(E) The commissioner shall issue a final decision within 55 days of the filing of the request for an extension of time to begin the operation of a video camera, unless the commissioner determines that an evidentiary hearing would be helpful in deciding the issues raised. If the commissioner decides to hold an evidentiary hearing the commissioner shall establish the timelines and procedures to be used. Whether to conduct the hearing by telephone or other electronic methods will be considered.

(11) A commissioner's final decision under this subsection is not subject to appeal.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 11, 2017.

TRD-201705033

Cristina De La Fuente-Valadez

Director, Rulemaking

Texas Education Agency

Earliest possible date of adoption: January 21, 2018

For further information, please call: (512) 475-1497