Despite Reforms, Problems With Restraint And Seclusion Persist
Two years after Iowa implemented rules restricting the use of restraint and seclusion tactics in schools, compliance remains elusive.
According to state records, teachers in at least three Iowa school districts have violated the rules, which limit the types of restraint allowed and circumstances in which they can be used. What’s more, the 2008 rules restrict the amount of time students can be confined to a so-called “time-out room” and specifically prohibit restraint or seclusion from being used as a form of punishment, among other issues.
Since the new rules took effect, a student with disabilities was strapped to his chair with a seatbelt in one case because his aides were gone. In another instance a student was dragged across a carpeted floor to a time-out room and in a third circumstance a teacher used physical means to punish a student for being disruptive. (Read all of Disability Scoop’s coverage of restraint and seclusion >>)
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Advocates say the incidents are evidence that teachers need more training, reports The Des Moines Register. To read more click here.
Across the country, most states have rules governing the use of restraint and seclusion in schools, but they vary greatly. Currently, a bill is under consideration in Congress to establish national guidelines. The measure was approved earlier this year in the House of Representatives, but would need to pass through the Senate and be signed by the president in order to become law.