School Administrative Rules
The purpose of the administrative rule section 37.111.8 is to protect the health of individuals (students, staff and visitors) working in or attending schools in the State of Montana.
Why are we updating these rules now?
The public accommodation school rules were last updated in 1986. As previously written, the rules were out of date and in many cases not compatible with current laws and evidence-based best practices already adopted by many school districts.
Impact on Academic Achievement
- Evidence clearly demonstrates that student health and academic achievement are linked.
- Healthy students are more effective learners.
- Academic success and achievement strongly predict overall adult health outcomes.
- High school graduation leads to lower rates of health problems and risk for incarceration, as well as enhanced financial stability and socio-emotional well-being during adulthood.
Why focus on schools?
Research demonstrates that young children are uniquely vulnerable to environmental health hazards, and that some health and learning problems are linked to pollutant exposure. Children are exposed to more potential hazards because they eat proportionally more food, drink more fluids, and breathe more air per pound of body weight than adults, and their response to toxic substances can differ markedly from those seen in adults.
- All children deserve a safe and healthy learning environment
- Children are less able to protect themselves.
- Schools are not always aware of potential health hazards
The rule subsections are also broken out on the Montana Secretary of State website. The new version of the rules will be published on the Montana Secretary of State website in April 2020 and a link to the site will be included here.
Rule Update Process
ARM 37.111.8 was reviewed by a committee of DPHHS staff from the Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Bureau and the Communicable Disease Control and Emergency Preparedness and Training Bureau. Members of the EPA’s Children’s Environmental Health Network were asked to participate and provide feedback throughout the multi-year process.
Stakeholder Groups Consulted for Feedback
Local County Health Departments
Montana Association of School Business Officials
Montana Association of Schools Nurses
Montana Board of Public Education
Montana Department of Environmental Quality
Montana Department of Labor and Industry
Montana Federation of Public Employees
Montana Indian Education Association
Montana Office of Public Instruction
Montana Rural Education Association
Montana School Boards Association
Montana Small School Alliance
Montana Quality Education Association
School Administrators of Montana
Official Rule Notices
Key DocumentsOfficial Rules 37.111.8
School Rules: Summary of Changes
September 1, 2021
Schools must establish a water flushing program to implement following periods of inactivity (3 or more days).
Beginning September 1, 2021, schools must have and follow written policies and procedures regarding the storage, administration, and lawful disposal of prescription, nonprescription, and over-the-counter medication.
Schools must develop and implement an approved Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program beginning September 1, 2021.
December 31, 2021
Initial water samples must be take by December 31, 2021.