June 19, 2010

Commentary: Georgia must end seclusion, restraints

Congressional investigators last year found widespread evidence of the use of restraints and seclusion of students by school staff around the country, most of it involving students with disabilities. Some of the cases ended in death.

Writing in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Ruby Moore and Eric Jacobson call on Georgia to end seclusion and restraint in the state’s schools and turn instead to the use of positive behavioral supports (PBS).

Moore and Jacobson urge the state’s board of education to strengthen a proposed new rule by adding requirements for oversight, data collection and analysis, which they say are necessary to prevent the tragic deaths of more Georgia schoolchildren.
An excerpt:
Georgia can be at the forefront of states that are ending the practices of seclusion and restraints. We hope others will attend tomorrow’s board of education meeting to urge the adoption of a stronger rule that includes accountability.
Then we can create schools that are safe for children and teachers, provide effect oversight and support and, ultimately, protect our children. We should no longer send our children to school fearing that we may never see them return.

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