School boards have broad authority to determine educational policy. But in Indiana, public schools are heavily regulated in the establishment, selection and implementation of many areas including policy, curriculum, reporting requirements and trainings.
The state mandated trainings range from bullying, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), criminal gangs, suicide prevention, child abuse and neglect, human trafficking, seizure, stop the bleed, dyslexia, homeless children and youth, concussion, heat preparedness, testing integrity, seclusion and restraint, school law enforcement and sudden cardiac arrest of students. This non-exhaustive list does not include other federal training requirements in areas such as Title IX (sex discrimination), Title VII (employment discrimination) or additional trainings that may include internal policy.
Education leaders interested in greater autonomy and flexibility from state-regulated trainings are encouraged to consider measures for deregulation enabled by the General Assembly and the Indiana State Board of Education. These flexibility options include (1) waivers to implement nonstandard courses and curriculum programs; (2) waivers of curriculum and graduation requirements for programs for high ability students; (3) school improvement plan waivers; and (4) 1003 waivers from many provisions of Title 20 of the Indiana Code (Title 20) or the Board’s Administrative Rules (511 IAC).
For more information on the available waiver options visit: https://www.in.gov/sboe/files/IN-Flex-Guide-12182020.pdf.
Bottom line, education leaders are encouraged to annually review state mandated trainings to both update their compliance plans and identify whether deregulation through the 1003 process or other means is a preferred mechanism for flexibility.
This blog post was originally published in KGR’s monthly article for the Indiana Association of School Principals’ client newsletter. Navigating state and federal regulations can be challenging. For more information, contact the KGR Education Law and Public Policy team.