(a)Definitions and procedures. The following words,
terms, and procedures, when used in this section, shall have the following
meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.
(1)Architect--An individual registered as an architect
under the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1051, and responsible for
compliance with the architectural design requirements and all other
applicable requirements of the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1051.
(2)Educational program--A written document, developed
and provided by the district, that includes the following information:
(A)a summary of the school district's educational
philosophy, mission, and goals; and
(B)a description of the general nature of the district's
instructional program in accordance with §74.1 of this title
(relating to Essential Knowledge and Skills). The written educational
program should describe:
(i)the learning activities to be housed, by instructional
(ii)how the subject matter will be taught (methods
of instructional delivery);
(iii)the materials and equipment to be used and stored;
(iv)utilities and infrastructure needs; and
(v)the characteristics of furniture needed to support
(3)Educational specifications--A written document
for a proposed new school facility or major space renovation that
includes a description of the proposed project, expressing the range
of issues and alternatives. School districts that do not have personnel
on staff with experience in developing educational specifications
shall use the services of a design professional or consultant experienced
in school planning and design to assist in the development of the
educational specifications. The school district shall allow for input
from teachers, other school campus staff, and district program staff
in developing the educational specifications. The following information
should be included in the educational specifications:
(A)the instructional programs, grade configuration,
and type of facility;
(B)the spatial relationships--the desired relationships
for the functions housed at the facility:
(i)should be developed by the school district to support
the district's instructional program;
(ii)should identify functions that should be:
(I)adjacent to, immediately accessible;
(II)nearby, easily accessible; and
(III)removed from or away from; and
(iii)should relate to classroom/instructional functions,
instructional support functions, building circulation, site activities/functions,
and site circulation;
(C)number of students;
(D)a list of any specialized classrooms or major support
areas, noninstructional support areas, outdoor learning areas, outdoor
science discovery centers, living science centers, or external activity
(E)a schedule of the estimated number and approximate
size of all instructional and instructional support spaces included
in the facility;
(F)estimated budget for the facility project;
(G)school administrative organization;
(H)provisions for outdoor instruction;
(I)hours of operation that include the instructional
day, extracurricular activities, and any public access or use;
(J)the safety of students and staff in instructional
programs, such as science and vocational instruction; and
(K)the overall security of the facility.
(4)Engineer--An individual registered as an engineer
under the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1001, and responsible for
compliance with the engineering design requirements and all other
applicable requirements of the Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 1001.
(A)elementary school level--a school facility that
includes some or all grades from prekindergarten through Grade 5 or
(B)middle school level--a school facility that includes
some or all grades from Grade 6 through Grade 8 or Grade 9, or a school
facility that includes only Grade 6;
(C)high school level--a school facility that includes
some or all grades from Grade 9 or Grade 10 through Grade 12, or a
school facility that includes only Grade 9; and
(D)secondary school level--a school facility that
includes some or all grades from Grade 6 through Grade 12.
(6)Hazardous chemical--As defined by the Texas Health
and Safety Code, Chapter 502, Hazard Communication Act.
(7)Instructional space--General classrooms, specialized
classrooms, outdoor learning areas, and major support areas.
(8)Library--Library will include the following minimum
(B)reference/independent study area;
(E)computer/online reference areas; and
(F)necessary ancillary areas, such as offices, workrooms,
head-end room, and storage rooms.
(9)Long-range school facility plan--School districts
are encouraged to formulate a long-range facilities plan prior to
making major capital investments. When formulating a plan, a school
district's process should allow for input from teachers, students,
parents, taxpayers, and other interested parties that reside within
the school district. Major considerations should include:
(A)a description of the current and future instructional
program and instructional delivery issues;
(B)the age, condition, and educational appropriateness
of all buildings on the campus (in district), considering condition
of all components and systems as well as design flexibility, including
an estimate of cost to replace or refurbish and appropriate recommendations;
(C)verification of the suitability of school site(s)
for the intended use, considering size, shape, useable land, suitability
for the planned improvements, and adequate vehicular and pedestrian
access, queuing, parking, playgrounds and fields, etc.; and
(D)a timeline and a series of recommendations to modify
or supplement existing facilities to support the district's instructional
(10)Major space renovations--Renovations to all or
part of the facility's instructional space where the scope of the
work in the affected part of the facility involves substantial renovations
to the extent that most existing interior walls and fixtures are demolished
and then subsequently rebuilt in a different configuration and/or
function. Other renovations associated with repair or replacement
of architectural interior or exterior finishes; fixtures; equipment;
and electrical, plumbing, and mechanical systems are not subject to
the requirements of subsections (d) and (e) of this section, but shall
comply with applicable building codes as required by subsection (f)
of this section.
(11)Portable, modular building--An industrialized
building as defined by the Texas Occupations Code, §1202.003,
or any other manufactured or site-built building that is capable of
being relocated and is used as a school facility.
(12)Square feet per student--The net square footage
of a room divided by the maximum number of students to be housed in
that room during any single class period.
(13)Square feet per room measurements--The net square
footage of a room includes exposed storage space, such as cabinets
or shelving, but does not include hallway space, classroom door alcoves,
or storage space, such as closets or preparation offices. The net
square footage of a room shall be measured from the inside surfaces
of the room's walls.
(A)ANSI--American National Standards Institute;
(B)ICC--International Code Council; and
(C)NFPA--National Fire Protection Association.
(b)Implementation date. The requirements for school
facility standards shall apply to projects for new construction or
major space renovations if:
(1)a board of trustees adopts a fiscal year maintenance
and operations budget where a capital improvement project title and
a design or design and construction budget are delineated;
(2)a board of trustees calls a bond election where
one or more capital improvement project titles as well as design or
design and construction budgets are delineated; or
(3)a new contract or amendment to an existing contract
for architectural services for new construction or a major renovation
for a school facility project has been agreed to, and signed and dated
by both parties to the agreement after January 1, 2004, and before
November 1, 2021.
(c)Certification of design and construction.
(1)In this section, the word "certify" indicates that
the architect or engineer has reviewed the standards contained in
this chapter and used the best professional judgment and reasonable
care consistent with the practice of architecture or engineering in
the State of Texas in executing the construction documents. The architect
or engineer also certifies that these documents conform to the provisions
of this section, except as indicated on the certification.
(2)The school district shall notify and obligate the
architect or engineer to provide the required certification. The architect's
or engineer's signature and seal on the construction documents shall
(3)To ensure that facilities have been designed and
constructed according to the provisions of this section, each of the
involved parties shall execute responsibilities as follows.
(A)The school district shall provide the architect
or engineer the educational program and educational specifications
approved by the board of trustees as required by this subchapter,
and building code specifications for the facility. If a school district
has a long-range school facility plan, it shall also be provided to
the architect or engineer.
(B)The architect or engineer shall perform a building
code search under applicable regulations that may influence the project,
and shall certify that the design has been researched before it is
(C)The architect or engineer shall also certify that
the facility has been designed according to the provisions of this
section, based on the educational program, educational specifications,
long-range school facility plan, building code specifications, and
all documented changes to the construction documents provided by the
(D)The building contractor or construction manager
shall certify that the facility has been constructed in general accordance
with the construction documents specified in subparagraph (C) of this
paragraph. If the school district acts as general contractor, it shall
make the certification required by this paragraph.
(E)When construction is completed, the school district
shall certify that the facility conforms to the design requirements
specified in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph.
(F)The certifications specified in subparagraphs (A)-(E)
of this paragraph shall be gathered on the "Certification of Project
Compliance" form developed by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). The
school district will retain this form in its files indefinitely until
review and/or submittal is required by representatives of the TEA.
(d)Space, minimum square foot, and design requirements.
(1)A school district shall provide instructional space
if required by the district educational specifications described in
subsection (e) of this section.
(2)For each type of instructional space, a district
shall satisfy the requirements of this section by using the standard
for square feet per room specified in paragraph (5)(B)-(D) of this
subsection. For school districts with facilities that have one or
more classrooms with maximum class sizes that are normally less than
22 students at the elementary level and less than 25 students at the
middle or high school level, the school districts may satisfy the
requirements of this section for those classrooms by using the standard
for the minimum square feet per student specified in paragraph (5)(B)-(D)
of this subsection. These classrooms shall be designed on the basis
of expected maximum class size, and not expected average class size.
Upon submission by a district, alternate classroom designs with square
feet per room measurements less than those specified in this subsection
may be considered for approval by the TEA division responsible for
state funding on a case-by-case basis.
(3)School districts should consider providing extra
square footage in classrooms where the use on a regular basis of multiple
computers, large furniture, televisions, mobile laptop carts, mobile
video conferencing carts, monitors on carts, or the like is anticipated.
To improve circulation and usability of classroom space, school districts
with class sizes that are normally larger than 25 students for Grades
5-12 should also consider increasing the minimum classroom size by
adding the appropriate minimum square feet per student specified in
paragraph (5)(B)-(D) of this subsection for each student in excess
(4)Compliance with the standards specified in paragraph
(5)(B)-(D) of this subsection will be evaluated based on the school
district's intended full-time and/or part-time use of the areas, and
not the name of the areas as identified in the construction documents.
(5)Instructional area size and design requirements.
(A)Design criteria. The school district shall provide
the architect or engineer with all expected class sizes for the facilities,
with the list of chemicals to be used in the science laboratories
or science laboratory/classrooms, and with the number of computers
anticipated in the library, so that the architect or engineer can
adequately design the facilities to meet the criteria specified in
subparagraphs (B)-(D) of this paragraph.
(i)Classrooms for prekindergarten-Grade 1 shall have
a minimum of 800 square feet per room. School districts with small
class sizes may have classrooms that provide a minimum of 36 square
feet per student.
(ii)Classrooms at the elementary school level for
Grades 2 and up shall have a minimum of 700 square feet per room.
School districts with small class sizes may have classrooms that provide
a minimum of 32 square feet per student.
(iii)Classrooms at the secondary school level shall
have a minimum of 700 square feet per room. School districts with
small class sizes may have classrooms that provide a minimum of 28
square feet per student.
(i)A computer classroom used for the teaching of computer
skills shall have a minimum of 900 square feet per room. The minimum
room size is ideal for 25 students; 36 square feet per student should
be added to the minimum square footage for each student in excess
of 25. School districts with small class sizes may have computer classrooms
that provide a minimum of 36 square feet per student. School districts
should consider the heat output of computers when designing the ventilation
system that serves a computer classroom.
(ii)Computer laboratories that are not used regularly
for scheduled instruction but that are intended to support other instructional
areas shall have a minimum of 25 square feet per computer station.
For computer laboratories where the use of portable computers, such
as laptop computers, is anticipated, the size may be reduced to 20
square feet per computer station.
(iii)The following provisions shall apply to combination
science laboratories/classrooms, where each student has a lab station
and where typically there is a clearly defined laboratory area and
a clearly defined lecture area.
(I)Combination science laboratories/classrooms shall
have a minimum of 900 square feet per room at the elementary school
level. The minimum room size is adequate for 22 students; 41 square
feet per student shall be added to the minimum square footage for
each student in excess of 22.
(II)Combination science laboratories/classrooms shall
have a minimum of 1,200 square feet per room at the middle school
level. The minimum room size is adequate for 24 students; 50 square
feet per student shall be added to the minimum square footage for
each student in excess of 24.
(III)Combination science laboratories/classrooms shall
have a minimum of 1,400 square feet per room at the high school level.
The minimum room size is adequate for 24 students; 58 square feet
per student shall be added to the minimum square footage for each
student in excess of 24.
(IV)School districts with small class sizes may have
combination science laboratories/classrooms that provide a minimum
of 41 square feet per student but not less than 700 square feet total
at the elementary school level, a minimum of 50 square feet per student
but not less than 950 square feet total at the middle school level,
and a minimum of 58 square feet per student but not less than 1,100
square feet total at the high school level.
(iv)For districts that choose to use separate science
classrooms and science laboratories, the following provisions shall
(I)A science classroom shall be a minimum of 700 square
feet regardless of grade level served.