Behavior Intervention Team

Mission:

To provide a timely intervention resource for students, faculty and staff in order to address student behavioral issues and promote student academic success and safety through appropriate and timely response. The Behavior Intervention Team (BIT) is an Advisory group to the Dean of Campus Life and Student Development. 

Purpose: 

The BIT Team will serve as a central network focused on preventive and timely intervention before crisis arises. The BIT Team is a resource for TAMU-Commerce faculty, staff, and students by which they can report student behaviors of concern. Examples of such instances include; but are not limited to: behavior which appears to be dangerous or threatening to oneself or others; troubling behavior; angry, hostile, or abusive behavior; or other behavior that is inappropriate or disruptive. In some cases there may be no violation of the Texas A&M University–Commerce Student Code of Conduct, but the behavior may evoke alarm or concern among involved persons. 

Responsibilities:

  • Receive and gather information about behavior which appears to be dangerous or threatening to oneself or others; troubling behavior; angry, hostile, or abusive behavior; or other behavior that is inappropriate or disruptive involving students. 
  • Develop specific strategies to manage potentially harmful or disruptive behavior with regard to safety and rights of others and in order to minimize the disruption to the college community. 
  • Make recommendations to college officials on appropriate action(s) consistent with college policies and procedures.
  • Coordinate the college response to potentially harmful/disruptive situations.
  • Develop and disseminate informational materials focused on identification and prevention of disruptive behavior.
  • BIT is not a crisis response team but acts in a proactive manner to assist students once identified and acts to prevent violence on campus.

Behavior Intervention Team Members:

Robert Dotson – Assistant Dean of Campus Life (Chairperson)

Michael Stark – Residential Living and Learning 

Donna Spinato – University Police Department 

Dr. Tabetha Adkins – University College

Dr. Nick Patras - University Counseling Center

Nikki Barnett - Student Case Management

Rebecca Tuerk – Student Disability Resources & Services

Maxine Mendoza – Student Health Services and Wellness 

Dr. Ray Green – Honors College

Michele Vieira – Human Resources

Judy Sackfield - Athletics Department

Rick Rosenstengle - Morris Recreation Center

Danielle Davis - L.E.A.D.

As Needed Members:

Other college officials may be asked to serve on the team in specific situations as needed. The team will consult with the Dean of Campus Life and Student Development and/or University Counsel as needed.  The team will meet bi-weekly, or as needed.

Helpful Information:

Helpful Information for Students, Faculty and Staff

Referral Process:

Members of the TAMU-Commerce community may refer students of concern to BIT through numerous channels. The Behavior Intervention Report Form is accessible above. This form should be downloaded, completed and turned in to the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities (201 Halladay Student Services). The TAMU-Commerce community members can also contact BIT through calling or emailing BIT@TAMUC.edu. All BIT referrals and files will be kept separate from Judicial files until such time the behavior becomes a Student Code of Conduct violation.

If you believe the student or community is in immediate danger, please contact the University Police Department at 903-886-5868.

Referral Form:

If you would like to refer someone to the Behavior Intervention Team, please fill out, print and return the Referral Form to the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities office.

BIT Flow Chart:

BIT Flow Chart

Possible Resolutions/Outcomes:

  • No action. Further observations
  • Assist in developing an action plan for assistance
  • Referral to existing on-campus support resource
  • Referral to appropriate community resources
  • Referral for Code of Conduct violation
  • Recommendation of Parental Notification
  • Recommendation of Medical Leave of Absence**
  • Recommendation of Involuntary Leave of Absence**
  • Recommendation of Interim Suspension
  • Other options

*Depending on circumstances, students who fail to comply with outcomes of BIT may be referred to Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities. 

**Depending on circumstances, this is in an extreme instance and only after consult with the Dean.

Appeal Process:

Decisions that can be appealed are an Interim Suspension or an Involuntary Leave of Absence. If a student who is suspended on an interim basis through an Interim Suspension or an Involuntary Leave of Absence wishes to return to classes and/or residence, he or she may make an appointment to appear personally before the Dean of Campus Life or designee within five (5) business days from the effective date of the issuance. The Interim Suspension or Involuntary Leave of Absence may continue after this hearing or it may be discontinued. 

Case Information and Confidentiality:

Right to Privacy

Texas A&M University-Commerce recognizes the importance of maintaining certain records for each student which contributes to and confirms the student’s educational progress.  To protect the rights of students regarding these records, the College has established policies and guidelines which describe the records maintained and provisions for releasing information.  These rules conform to State and Federal laws (the U.S. Department of Education guidelines for the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended, known as the Buckley Amendment or FERPA.)

If the student referred to BIT is already receiving care at the University Counseling Center or an outside mental health provider, information about that student’s relationship may not be obtained by the team from those agencies without written authorization from the student in question, in accordance with federal and state law.

Exceptions

Members of the team may provide each other or faculty/staff involved in a particular case, or outside parties in connection with the situation (such as parents/guardian), information in situations that concern protecting the health and safety of that student or others in the community.  The University has the duty to warn members of the community when potential harmful or dangerous situations have been reported and after a review by campus officials warrant such notification.  In these situations, BIT may breach confidentiality in order to warn identified victims.

Official minutes and meeting records containing identifying data will be maintained in a confidential file in the Chair’s office.