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Searching 2021-2022 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

 

Title 33: Human Services

Chapter 043: CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS WITH SEVERE EMOTIONAL DISTURBANCE

  • § 4301. Definitions

    As used in this chapter:

    (1) "Child with a disability" means a child who either is eligible for early essential education or special education under State or federal law, or who is a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance.

    (2) "Coordinated service plan" means a written addendum to each service plan developed by an individual agency for a child or adolescent with severe emotional disturbances that shall be developed when the child has needs that require services from more than one agency. The coordinated services plan shall be designed to meet the needs of the child within his or her family or in an out-of-home placement, and in the school and the community. The coordinated services plan shall:

    (A) be based upon an appropriate assessment of the individual needs of the child;

    (B) identify service needs of the child;

    (C) identify services that are currently being provided;

    (D) identify public or private agencies that currently provide each needed service, and how each needed service is funded;

    (E) if any service need is not being met, include an explanation of why the service is not being provided, including lack of funds or the fact that service is not available;

    (F) delineate case management responsibilities;

    (G) include a reintegration plan when an out-of-home placement is made or recommended; and

    (H) be developed with the opportunity for participation from parents, a guardian, or a surrogate parent appointed pursuant to Pub. L. No. 94-142.

    (3) "Child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance" means a person who:

    (A) exhibits a behavioral, emotional, or social impairment that disrupts his or her academic or developmental progress or family or interpersonal relationships;

    (B) has impaired functioning that has continued for at least one year or has an impairment of short duration and high severity;

    (C) is under 18 years of age, or is under 22 years of age and eligible for special education under State or federal law; and

    (D) falls into one or more of the following categories, whether or not he or she is diagnosed with other serious disorders such as developmental disability, severe neurological dysfunction, or sensory impairments:

    (i) children and adolescents who exhibit seriously impaired contact with reality and severely impaired social, academic, and self-care functioning whose thinking is frequently confused, whose behavior may be grossly inappropriate and bizarre and whose emotional reactions are frequently inappropriate to the situation;

    (ii) children and adolescents who are classified as management or conduct disordered because they manifest long-term behavior problems, including developmentally inappropriate inattention, hyperactivity, impulsiveness, aggressiveness, antisocial acts, refusal to accept limits, suicidal behavior, or substance abuse;

    (iii) children and adolescents who suffer serious discomfort from anxiety, depression, irrational fears, and concerns whose symptoms may be exhibited as serious eating and sleeping disturbances, extreme sadness of suicidal proportion, maladaptive dependence on parents, persistent refusal to attend school, or avoidance of nonfamilial social contact. (Added 1987, No. 264 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1989, No. 203 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 213; 2021, No. 20, § 329.)

  • § 4302. State interagency team

    (a) A State interagency team is created and shall consist of eight members:

    (1) The Director of the division responsible for special education for the Agency of Education.

    (2) The Agency of Education's consultant for children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance.

    (3) The Director of the division responsible for children's mental health for the Department of Mental Health.

    (4) The Chief of the Children, Adolescents, and Family Unit in the Division of Children's Mental Health Services for the Department of Mental Health.

    (5) The Deputy Commissioner for the Family Services Division of the Department for Children and Families.

    (6) The placement consultant for the Family Services Division of the Department for Children and Families.

    (7) A representative of the Secretary of Human Services.

    (8) A parent of a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance. The parent shall receive compensation in accordance with the provisions of 32 V.S.A. § 1010, and the compensation shall be paid for by the Agency of Human Services.

    (b) The State interagency team shall have the following powers and duties:

    (1) Submit an annual report to the Commissioners of Mental Health and for Children and Families and the Secretary of Education on the status of programs for children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance, which shall include a system of care plan. The system of care plan shall identify the characteristics and number of children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance in need of services, describe the educational, residential, mental health, or other services needed, describe the programs and resources currently available, recommend a plan to meet the needs of such children and adolescents, and recommend priorities for the continuation or development of programs and resources.

    (2) Develop and coordinate the provision of services to children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance.

    (3) Make recommendations to the local interagency team for resolution of any case of a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance referred by a local interagency team under subsection 4303(f) of this chapter.

    (4) Recommend to the Secretaries of Human Services and of Education and the Commissioners of Mental Health and for Children and Families any fiscal, policy, or programmatic change at the local, regional, or State level necessary to enhance the State's system of care for children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance and their families. (Added 1987, No. 264 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1989, No. 187 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1995, No. 174 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 295, eff. Feb. 14, 2014; 2013, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 69, eff. May 20, 2014.)

  • § 4303. Local interagency teams

    (a) There shall be at least one local interagency team for each administrative district established by the Department for Children and Families whose permanent membership shall include:

    (1) The person from the designated community mental health agency for that district responsible for coordinating children's services.

    (2) The person managing the family services district office of the Department for Children and Families for that district.

    (3) A special education administrator from a school district in that district.

    (4) A person designated by the Secretary of Human Services.

    (5) A parent of a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance. The parent shall receive compensation in accordance with the provisions of 32 V.S.A. § 1010, and the compensation shall be paid for by the Agency of Human Services.

    (b) In addition to the permanent members, the local interagency team reviewing the case of a child or adolescent shall include as ad hoc members the special education administrator of the school district serving the child or adolescent and the parents of the child or adolescent. The local interagency team may appoint on an ad hoc basis, other persons determined to be necessary for the effectiveness of the team.

    (c) The local interagency team shall appoint one of its permanent members to be chair. If the local interagency team cannot agree on a chair, one will be appointed by the State interagency team.

    (d) A referral may be made by a local agency, service provider, or parent concerning a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance when agreement cannot be reached with respect to the provision of appropriate services for the child or adolescent. When a referral is made, the local interagency team shall:

    (1) make recommendations concerning the following matters upon which agreement cannot be reached: assessment of the child, coordinated service planning, and the provision of services for the child or adolescent;

    (2) review the coordinated services plan for the child or adolescent and amend the plan if necessary.

    (e) The local interagency team may meet at the request of any agency or parent to serve as a forum for consideration of general issues relating to implementation of the provisions of this chapter.

    (f) After all attempts have been made without success to resolve any matter considered under subsection (d) or (e) of this section the matter shall be referred to the State interagency team.

    (g) The local interagency team annually shall inform all local agencies and service providers for children and adolescents with severe emotional disturbances of the provisions of this chapter and any implementing rules or procedures. (Added 1987, No. 264 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1989, No. 203 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 2, 3; 2013, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 70, eff. May 20, 2014.)

  • § 4304. Repealed. 1987, No. 264 (Adj. Sess.), § 17, eff. Jan. 15, 1992.

  • § 4304a. Advisory Board

    (a) An advisory board is created to advise the Secretary of Education and the Commissioners of Mental Health and for Children and Families about children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance and their families.

    (b) The Advisory Board shall also advise the Secretary and the Commissioners on the development of the system of care plan described in subsection 4305(c) of this title.

    (c) The State interagency team shall recommend to the Governor a list of potential Board members. The Governor shall appoint from that list three parents of children or adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance, three advocates from organizations working on behalf of children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance, and three professionals in related fields or service organizations.

    (d) Members of the Board shall serve for a term of three years, beginning April 1 of the year of appointment or until their successors are appointed. Initially one-third of the members shall be appointed to one-year terms, one-third to two-year terms, and one-third to three-year terms. Thereafter, members shall be appointed for three-year terms.

    (e) The Board shall elect a chair from among its members. The Board shall meet annually at the call of the Chair, and other meetings may be called by the Chair at such times and places as the Chair deems necessary.

    (f) The members of the Board who are employees of the State shall receive no additional compensation for their services, but actual and necessary expenses shall be allowed State employees and shall be charged to their departments. The members of the Board who are not State employees shall receive compensation as provided in 32 V.S.A. § 1010, and that compensation shall be paid by the Agency of Human Services. (Added 1993, No. 203 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1997, No. 147 (Adj. Sess.), § 138b; 1995, No. 174 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2013, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 71, eff. May 20, 2014; 2015, No. 23, § 59.)

  • § 4305. Coordinated system of care

    (a)(1) Services provided by or through the Departments of Mental Health and for Children and Families and the Agency of Education to children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance shall be pursuant to a coordinated services plan, developed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

    (2) Nothing in the provisions of this chapter shall be construed to grant an entitlement to any child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance to receive any educational, residential, mental health, or other service until and unless the General Assembly further provides that such children and adolescents or any subgroup thereof are so entitled.

    (b)(1) The State Board of Education, the Department of Mental Health, and the Department for Children and Families shall jointly adopt rules implementing the provisions of this chapter. Such rules shall:

    (A) provide guidelines for local interagency teams for development of procedures, with public participation, relating to:

    (i) referral, assessment, development, annual review, and revision of coordinated service plans, and time frames for these activities;

    (ii) fixing responsibility for case management; and

    (iii) notice to parents and guardians and other agencies;

    (B) protect the rights of children and adolescents and their parents and guardians concerning consent and confidentiality; and

    (C) ensure that matters unresolved after State interagency team review are subject to procedures for notice, hearing, and decisions of contested cases consistent with the provisions of 3 V.S.A. chapter 25.

    (2) Local interagency teams shall submit procedures developed in accordance with the rules adopted under subdivision (1)(A) of this subsection to the Advisory Board for review and comment. Thereafter, the proposed procedures shall be submitted to the Secretary and the Commissioners, who shall approve the procedures if all the elements specified in subdivision (1)(A) of this subsection are satisfied.

    (c) The Commissioners of Mental Health and for Children and Families and the Secretary of Education shall jointly submit to the General Assembly a report on the status of programs for children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance and their families, which shall include a system of care plan. The report shall be submitted together with the general appropriation bill provided for by 32 V.S.A. § 701. The system of care plan shall:

    (1) identify the characteristics and number of children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance in need of appropriate services, describe the educational, residential, mental health or other treatment services needed, describe currently available programs and resources, recommend a plan to meet the needs of such children, recommend priorities for the continuation or development of programs and resources, and make an assessment of the success of such programs; and

    (2) provide information as available on the extent to which children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance have not received services, the characteristics and number of those children and adolescents who have not received services and recommendations on how to address their identified needs.

    (d) Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed to diminish the rights of children with disabilities, their parents, guardians, or surrogate parents under federal or State law, including confidentiality, consent for services and evaluation, and parental involvement.

    (e) Nothing contained in this chapter shall entitle children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance to special education services unless they are otherwise eligible for such services under State or federal law.

    (f) Except as otherwise provided in chapters 51, 52, and 53 of this title, the receipt of appropriate services for a child or adolescent with a severe emotional disturbance or the child or adolescent's family, including an out-of-home placement, shall not be conditioned on placement of the child or adolescent in the legal custody, protective supervision, or protection of the Department for Children and Families. (Added 1987, No. 264 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1989, No. 187 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1989, No. 203 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 4, 5; 1995, No. 137 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1995, No. 174 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 296, eff. Feb. 14, 2014; 2013, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 72, eff. May 20, 2014; 2015, No. 23, § 60.)