States Make Little Progress On School Restraint And Seclusion
(Updated: December 15, 2009 at 3:18 PM CT)
Most states have done little in response to scathing allegations of abusive restraint and seclusion in schools that emerged in a federal report earlier this year.
A Government Accountability Office report released in May included hundreds of cases of allegedly abusive or deadly practices of restraint and seclusion experienced by students in the nation’s schools. Most of the cases involved children with disabilities.
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The report generated outrage from lawmakers at a hearing on Capitol Hill and at the White House. Subsequently, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan asked state school chiefs across the country to establish policies on seclusion and restraint in schools.
Earlier this month, legislation was introduced in both houses of Congress designed to curb abusive disciplinary practices.
In the meantime few states have done much to address the issue, which is not regulated by most states. And laws vary when they have been created.
Since the release of the federal report earlier this year, Tennessee, Missouri and Nevada have passed new laws. Legislation has been introduced in Maine, Michigan, Vermont and Wisconsin, though the Maine bill was defeated. Additionally, Maryland established regulations without passing a law, reports USA Today. To read more click here.