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2030 - Service Animals in Schools



The Walla Walla Public Schools Board of Directors acknowledges its responsibility to permit students and/or adults with disabilities to be accompanied by a “service animal” as required by federal laws and Washington State’s law against discrimination. This policy governs the presence of service animals in the schools, on school property, including school buses and at school activities.

A “service animal” means an animal that is trained for the purpose of assisting or accommodating a disabled person’s sensory, mental or physical disability.  The American with Disabilities Act definition of “service animal” means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability. Companion and comfort animals are not considered service animals. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual’s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors.  The crime deterrent effects of an animal’s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.

The parent/guardian of a student who believes the student needs to bring a service animal to school or an employee who wishes to bring a service animal to school, must submit a written request to the building principal. The building principal, in consultation with the Section 504 coordinator or director of special services, as appropriate, will determine whether or not to permit the service animal in school.

The superintendent will develop procedures to implement the policy.


Cross References:

Board Policy 5010               Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action

Board Policy 3210               Nondiscrimination

Board Policy 2162               Education of Students with Disabilities Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

Board Policy 2161               Special Education and Related Services for Eligible Students

Board Policy 2029               Animals as Part of the Instructional Program

Legal References:

American Disabilities Act (ADA), Revised Title II Regulations, 35 Service animals

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

RCW 28A.642                     Discrimination Prohibition

RCW 49.60.040                   Definitions

WAC 162-26                        Public accommodations, disability discrimination

WAC 392-145-021(3)          General operating requirements

WAC 392-172A-01035       Child with a disability or student eligible for special education

WAC 392-172A-01155 (3)  Related services

WAC 392-190                      Equal education opportunity - Unlawful discrimination prohibited

Adopted:  November 21, 2017

WALLA WALLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS • 364 South Park St. • Walla Walla, WA 99362 • Phone: 509-527-3000 • Fax: 509.529.7713

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