As a result of a letter sent by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, information was recently published regarding how each state handles its student seclusion and restraint policies.
The data, which was collected by the DOE’s regional Comprehensive Centers, has been reviewed and verified by each state’s Chief State School Officer or a representative of the Chief State School Officer. But, the report does not deny the appropriate use of restraints during transportation, as in the use of child safety restraint systems. This stance was recently echoed in a piece of proposed federal legislation.
“Restraint and seclusion policies should be reviewed regularly to prevent the abuse of such techniques and ensure that schools provide a safe learning environment for all of our children,” said Duncan in a press release. “I am pleased that many states and territories have begun to work with their stakeholders to develop or revise current practices. The Department will continue to serve as a resource throughout the process to ensure that all students are safe and protected.”
The report includes information on each state’s statutes, regulations, policies and guidance addressing seclusion and restraint, as well as any of the aforementioned that are currently being developed or revised. The information provided could help push more states to discuss the need for proper training in relation to school transportation and how to safely and securely transport children.