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Series 5000 - Students

5144.1 REG - 1. Elementary and Secondary - D. Welfare - (5) Use of Physical Force
Posted 01/01/2009 02:00PM

5144.1 REG

Series 5000 - Students

1. Elementary and Secondary

D. Welfare

(5) Use of Physical Force

The Board of Education (Board) seeks to foster a safe and positive learning environment for all students. In compliance with law, Board of Education employees will avoid the use of physical restraint or seclusion of students. However, physical restraint or seclusion of a student by trained school employees may be necessary in an emergency situation to maintain the safety of the student, where harm to the student or others is immediate or imminent.

The following sets forth the procedures for compliance with the relevant Connecticut General Statutes and Regulations concerning the physical restraint and seclusion of students in the Suffield Public Schools. The Board mandates compliance with this regulation and the law at all times. Violations of this regulation by a school employee or other individual working at the direction of, or under the supervision of the Board may result in disciplinary action, up to and including possible termination of employment status and/or termination of contract for services.

Nothing within these regulations shall be construed to interfere with the Board's responsibility to maintain a safe school setting, in accordance with Connecticut General Statutes §10-220, or to supersede the justifiable use of reasonable physical force permitted under Connecticut General Statutes §53a-18(6).

  1. Definitions
    1. Life-threatening physical restraint means any physical restraint or hold of a person that (restricts the flow of air into a person's lungs, whether by chest compression or any other means, or immobilizes or reduces the free movement of a person's arms, legs or head while the person is in the prone position.
    2. Psychopharmacologic agentmeans any medication that affects the central nervous system, influencing thinking, emotion or behavior.
    3. Physical restraint means any mechanical or personal restriction that immobilizes or reduces the free movement of a person's arms, legs or head. Excluded from this definition is briefly holding a person in order to calm or comfort the person; restraint involving the minimum contact necessary to safely escort a person from one area to another; medical devices including but not limited to, supports prescribed by a health care provider to achieve proper body position or balance; helmets or other protective gear used to protect a person from injuries due to a fall; or helmets, mitts and similar devices used to prevent self-injury when the device is part of a documented treatment plan or individualized education program pursuant to Connecticut's special education laws or prescribed or recommended by a medical professional and is the least restrictive means to prevent such self-injury.
    4. School employee means a teacher, substitute teacher, school administrator, Superintendent, guidance counselor, psychologist, social worker, nurse, physician, school paraprofessional, or coach employed by the Board of Education or working in a public elementary, middle or high school; or any other individual who, in the performance of his/her duties has regular contact with students and who provides services to or on behalf of students enrolled in the district's schools, pursuant to a contract with the Board of Education.
    5. Seclusion means the involuntary confinement of a student in a room, with or without staff supervision, in a manner that prevents the person from leaving. Seclusion does not include any confinement of a student in which the person is physically able to leave the area of confinement including, but not limited to, in-school suspension and time-out.
    6. Student means a child (A) enrolled in grades kindergarten to twelve, inclusive, in a public school under the jurisdiction of a local or regional board of education, (B) receiving special education and related services in an institution or facility operating under contract with a local or regional Board of Education, (C) enrolled in a program or school administered by a regional education service center, or (D) receiving special education and related services from an approved private special education program, but does not include any child receiving educational services from Unified School District #2 or the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. A special education student, ages 18 to 21 inclusive, in a transition program is also covered by these regulations.
    7. Behavior Intervention: Supports and other strategies developed by the Planning and Placement Team ("PPT") to address the behavior of a person at risk that impedes the learning of the person at risk or the learning of others.
  2. Procedures for Physical Restraint of Students
    1. No school employee shall under any circumstance use a life-threatening physical restraint on a student.
    2. No school employee shall use involuntary physical restraint on a student except as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or to others.
    3. Physical restraint of a student shall never be used as a disciplinary measure, as a convenience, or instead of a less restrictive alternative.
    4. School employees must explore all less restrictive alternatives prior to using physical restraint on a student.
    5. School employees are barred from placing a student in physical restraint until he or she has received training in its proper use.
    6. School employees must comply with all regulations promulgated by the Connecticut State Board of Education in their use of physical restraint.
    7. Monitoring
      1. A trained school employee must continually monitor any student who is physically restrained. The monitoring must be conducted by direct observation of the student, or by video provided the video monitoring occurs close enough for the monitor to provide assistance, if needed.
      2. A trained school employee must regularly evaluate the person being restrained for signs of physical distress. The school employee must record each evaluation in the educational record of the student being restrained.
  3. Procedures for Seclusion of Students
    1. No school employee shall use involuntary seclusion on a student except as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or to others.
    2. Use of Seclusion
      1. A school employee may not use seclusion to discipline a student, because it is convenient or instead of a less restrictive alternative.
      2. The area in which the student is secluded must have a window or other fixture allowing the student to clearly see beyond the seclusion area.
      3. Any room used for seclusion must:
        1. be of a size that is appropriate to the chronological and developmental age, size and behavior of the student;
        2. have a ceiling height that is comparable to the ceiling height of the other rooms in the building in which the seclusion room is located;
        3. be equipped with heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting systems that are comparable to the systems that are used in the other rooms of the building in which the seclusion room is located;
        4. be free of any object that poses a danger to the student who is being placed in the seclusion room;
        5. have a door with a lock if that lock is equipped with a device that automatically disengages the lock in case of an emergency. Any latching or securing of the door, whether by mechanical means or by a provider or assistant holding the door in place to prevent the student from leaving the room, shall be able to be removed in the case of any emergency. An "emergency," for purposes of this subsection, includes but is not limited to the following:
          1. the need to provide direct and immediate medical attention to the student;
          2. fire;
          3. the need to remove the student to a safe location during a building lockdown; or
          4. other critical situations that may require immediate removal of the student from seclusion to a safe location; and
        6. Have an unbreakable observation window located in a wall or door to permit frequent visual monitoring of the person at risk and any provider or assistant in such room. The requirement for an unbreakable observation window does not apply if it is necessary to clear and use a classroom or other room in the school building as a seclusion room.
        7. The monitoring of students in seclusion is to be done by direct observation from another room or by video, provided the video monitoring occurs close enough for the monitor to provide aid if needed.
        8. When seclusion is used as a behavior intervention strategy more than two times in any school quarter, the PPT is encouraged to convene to review the use of seclusion, consider whether additional evaluations or assessments are necessary to address the behavior of such student and may revise the behavioral plan as appropriate.
        9. Any period of seclusion (1) shall be limited to that time necessary to allow the student to compose him or herself and return to the educational environment and (2) shall not exceed 15 minutes, except that this may be extended for additional periods of up to 30 minutes each, if the Principal or his/her designee, school health or mental health professional, or board certified behavioral analyst trained in the use of restraint and seclusion determines that continued restraint or seclusion is necessary to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or to others. Such authorization is to be placed in writing. Where transportation of the student is necessary, the written authorization to continue the use of seclusion is not required if immediate or imminent injury to the person at risk or to others is a concern.
        10. School employees must explore all less restrictive alternatives prior to using seclusion for a student as an emergency intervention.
        11. School employees must comply with all regulations promulgated by the Connecticut State Board of Education in their use of seclusion for students.
        12. School employees are barred from placing a student in seclusion until he/she has received training in its proper use.
  4. Training of School Employees
  5. The Board will provide training to the members of the crisis intervention team for each school in the district. The Board may provide such training to any teacher, administrator, school paraprofessional and other school employees designated by the school principal and who has direct contact with students regarding physical restraint and seclusion of students. The training will be provided during the school year annually and shall include, but not be limited to:

    1. An overview of the relevant laws and regulations regarding the use of physical restraint and seclusion on students and the proper uses of restraint and seclusion. Such overview shall be in a manner and form as prescribed by the State Department of Education.
    2. The creation of a plan by which the Board will provide training and professional development regarding the prevention of incidents requiring physical restraint or seclusion of students.

      The plan is to be implemented not later than July 1, 2018.
    3. The Board will create a plan, to be implemented not later than July 1, 2018, requiring regarding the proper means of physical restraint or seclusion of a student, including, but not limited to:
      1. Verbal defusing or de-escalation;
      2. Prevention strategies;
      3. Various types of physical restraint and seclusion;
      4. The differences between life-threatening physical restraint and other varying levels of physical restraint;
      5. The differences between permissible physical restraint and pain compliance techniques;
      6. Monitoring methods to prevent harm to a student who is physically restrained or in seclusion, including training in the proper means of physically restraining or secluding a student; and
      7. Recording and reporting procedures on the use of physical restraint and seclusion.
  6. Crisis Intervention Teams
    Annually, each school shall identify a crisis intervention team. Such team shall consist of any teacher, administrator, school paraprofessional or other school employee designated by the school principal, who has direct contact with students and trained in the use of physical restraint and seclusion. The Crisis Intervention Team will respond to any incident in which the use of physical restraint or seclusion may be necessary as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to a student or to others.

    Each member of the crisis intervention team shall be recertified in the use of physical restraint and seclusion annually. The Board shall require a list of the members of the crisis intervention team be maintained for each school.

    This policy and procedures is available on the district's website and in the Board's procedural manual. The policy shall be updated not later than sixty (60) days after the adoption or revision of regulations promulgated by the State Board of Education.
  7. Documentation and Communication
    1. After each incident of physical restraint or seclusion, and no later than the school day following the incident, a school employee must complete the standardized incident report form developed by the Connecticut State Department of Education for reporting incidents of physical restraint and seclusion. The incident form must be included in the educational file of the person at risk who was physically restrained or secluded. The information documents on the form must include the following:
      1. in the case of an emergency use, the nature of the emergency and what other steps, including attempts at verbal de-escalation, were taken to prevent the emergency from arising if there were indications that such an emergency was likely to arise;
      2. a detailed description of the nature of the restraint or seclusion;
      3. the duration of the restraint or seclusion; and
      4. the effect of the restraint or seclusion on the student's established behavioral support or educational plan.
    2. A school employee must notify the parent or guardian of a student of each incident that the student is physically restrained or placed in seclusion.
      1. A reasonable attempt shall be made to notify the parent or guardian of the student on the day of, but no later than twenty-four (24) hours after, physical restraint or seclusion is used as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or others.
      2. Notification may be made by telephone, e-mail, or other method which may include, but is not limited to, sending a note home with the student.
      3. The parent or guardian of a student who has been physically restrained or placed in seclusion shall be sent a copy of the completed standardized incident report of such action no later than two (2) business days after the emergency use of physical restraint or seclusion, regardless of whether the parent received the notification described in subsections 1 and 2 above.
    3. The Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator], or his or her designee, must, at each initial and annual PPT meetings for a student, provide the child's parent, guardian, or surrogate parent, or the student if such student is an emancipated minor or eighteen years of age or older, with the laws relating to physical restraint and seclusion as expressed through this regulation, and of the laws and regulations adopted by the Connecticut State Board of Education relating to physical restraint and seclusion.
    4. The Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator], or his or her designee, shall provide to the child's parent, guardian, or surrogate parent, or the student if such student is an emancipated minor or eighteen years of age or older, at the first PPT meeting following the child's referral to special education the plain language notice of rights regarding physical restraint and seclusion developed by the Connecticut State Department of Education.
    5. The plain language notice developed by the Connecticut State Department of Education shall also be provided to the child's parent, guardian, or surrogate parent, or the student if such student is an emancipated minor or eighteen years of age or older at the first PPT meeting at which the use of seclusion as a behavior intervention is included in the child's behavioral support or education plan.
    6. The Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator], or his or her designee, must be notified of the following:
      1. each use of physical restraint or seclusion on a special education student;
      2. the nature of the emergency that necessitated its use; and
      3. if the physical restraint or seclusion resulted in physical injury to the student.

Responsibilities of the Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator]

  1. The Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator], or his or her designee, must compile annually the instances of physical restraint and seclusion within the District, the nature of each instance of physical restraint and seclusion and whether instances of seclusion were conduct pursuant to IEPs.
  2. The Director of Special Education [or other responsible administrator], or his or her designee, must report to the Connecticut State Department of Education any instance of physical restraint or seclusion that resulted in physical injury to the student.
Legal Reference:

Connecticut General Statutes
10-76b State supervision of special education programs and services10-76b-5 through 10-76b-11 Use of Seclusion & Restraint in Public Schools.
10-76d Duties and powers of the boards of education to provide special education programs and services.
10-236b Physical restraint or seclusion of students by school employees (as amended by PA 17-220)
10-220 Duties of boards of education.
46a-150-154 Physical Restraint, medication, and seclusion of persons receiving care, education, or supervision in an institution or facility.
46a-153 Recording of use of restraint and seclusion required. Review of records by state agencies. Reviewing state agency to report serious injury or death to Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities and to Office of Child Advocate. (as amended by P.A. 12-88)
53a-18 Use of reasonable physical force.
PA 07-147 An Act Concerning Restraints and Seclusion in Public
Schools.
PA 15-141 An Act Concerning Seclusion and Restraint in Schools.

Other Reference:

Restraint and Seclusion: Resource Document, United States Department of Education, available at https://www2.ed.gov/policy/seclusion/restraints-and-seclusion-resources.pdf

Regulation Adopted: February 26, 2013SUFFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Regulation Revised: October 20, 2015
October 3, 2016
November 6, 2017
Suffield, Connecticut

Download the PDF of this Regulation

5144.1
Form 1

Suffield Public Schools
Physical Restraint Report Form

Note: This report is required to be submitted to the Principal/Director of Special Education as soon as practicable after an incident involving physical restraint, but in no event later than 24 hours after the incident.

Physical Restraint: Any mechanical or personal restriction that immobilizes or reduces the free movement of a person's arms, legs or head. The term DOES NOT INCLUDE: (A) briefly holding a person in order to calm or comfort the person; (B) restraint involving the minimum contact necessary to safely escort a person from one area to another; (C) medical devices, including, but not limited to, supports prescribed by a health care provider to achieve proper body position or balance; (D) helmets or other protective gear used to protect a person from injuries due to a fall; or (E) helmets, mitts and similar devices used
to prevent self-injury when the device is part of a documented treatment plan or individualized education program pursuant to state special education statutes.

STUDENT INFORMATION:

Name of Student: ___________________________________ Date of Restraint: _____________

Date of Birth: ___________ Age: _________ Gender: M/F _______ Grade Level: ___________

Does student currently receive special education services or is the student being evaluated for eligibility for special education services? Yes: ___ No: ___ School: ______________________

Date of this report: ___________________ Site of physical restraint: ______________________

This report prepared by: __________________________________ Position: ________________

Staff administering restraint:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________

Staff monitoring restraint:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________

Administrator who was verbally informed following the restraint:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: _______________________________
Reported by: ______________________________ Title: _______________________________


5144.1
Form 1
(continued)

PRECIPITATING ACTIVITY:

Description of activity in which the restrained or other students were engaged immediately preceding emergency use of physical restraint: (A student may not be placed in seclusion except as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or others. Restraint may not be used to discipline a student, because it is convenient or instead of a less restrictive environment.)

Description of the risk of immediate or imminent injury to the student restrained or others that required use of physical restraint:



Description of other steps, including attempts at verbal de-escalation, to prevent the emergency necessitating use of restraint:



DESCRIPTION OF PHYSICAL RESTRAINT:

Justification for initiating physical restraint (check all that apply):

  • Non-physical interventions were not effective
  • To protect student from immediate or imminent injury
  • To protect other student/staff from immediate or imminent injury

Type of protective hold used:

  • Side by side parallel hold
  • Lifted and carried (full security hold)
  • Held in chair (reverse cradle transport)
  • Floor control
  • Other (describe)

Regular evaluation of the student being restrained for signs of physical distress:
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________

Time restraint began:____________________ Time restraint ended:____________
Total time (in minutes): ____________________


5144.1
Form 1
(continued)

CESSATION OF RESTRAINT:

How restraint ended (check all that apply):

  • Determination by staff member that student was no longer a risk to himself/herself or others
  • Intervention by administrator(s) to facilitate de-escalation
  • Law enforcement personnel arrived
  • Staff sought in-house assistance
  • Community emergency personnel arrived
  • Other (describe):

Description of any injury to student and/or staff and any medical or first aid care provided:

Time medical staff checked injured person:___________________________

Medical staff actions:____________________________________________

Medical staff name: _____________________________________________

Incident report was filed with the following school district official:

__________________________________________________________

Date:______________

FURTHER ACTION TO BE TAKEN: (Attach separate page if necessary)
The school will take the following actions (check all that apply)

  • Review incident with student to address behavior that precipitated the restraint
  • Debrief staff regarding incident
  • Consider whether follow-up is necessary for students who witnessed the incident
  • Further contact with parents (describe):
  • Convene Crisis Intervention Team Meeting
  • Convene PPT to review/revise behavior intervention plan and/or IEP
  • Convene PPT to discuss functional behavior assessment

5144.1

Form 1
(continued)

PARENT/GUARDIAN NOTIFICATION (required for all restraints):

Parent who was verbally informed of this restraint:

Name: ___________ Telephone Number: ___________

Date: ___________ Time: ___________

Called by: ___________Title: ___________

Notice mailed to Parent: Yes_____ No_____

Mailed by:___________ Title: ___________

Reviewed by:_________________________________ Date: _________
(Principal/Program Administrator/ Team Leader)
Reviewed by:_________________________________ Date: _________
(Director of Special Education)

FOR PRINCIPAL/DIRECTOR OR DESIGNEE USE ONLY

  • Reviewed physical restraint report
  • Reviewed behavior plan, if applicable
  • In considering the effect of the restraint on the student's educational plan, I find the following:

_________________________________________________
_________________________________________________
_________________________________________________
_________________________________________________


5144.1
Form 2

Suffield Public Schools

Seclusion Report Form

Note:This report is required to be submitted to the Director of Special Education as soon as practicable after an incident involving the seclusion of a student, but in no event later than 24 hours after the incident.

Seclusion: The involuntary confinement of a student in a room, whether alone or with supervision by a Board of Education employee, in a manner that prevents the student from leaving. (A student may not be placed in seclusion except as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the student or others. Seclusion may not be used to discipline a student, because it is convenient or instead of a less restrictive environment.)

STUDENT INFORMATION:

Name of Student: ___________________________________ Date of seclusion: ____________

Date of Birth: ___________ Age: _________ Gender: M/F _______ Grade Level: ______

Does student currently receive special education services or is the student being evaluated for eligibility for special education services? Yes: ___ No: ___ School: __________

Date of this report: ___________________ Site of seclusion: __________

This report prepared by: __________ Position: ___________

Staff placing student in seclusion:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________

Staff monitoring seclusion:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________
Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________

Administrator who was verbally informed following the seclusion:

Name: ___________________________________ Title: __________
Reported by: ______________________________ Title: __________


5144.1
Form 2
(continued)

PRECIPITATING ACTIVITY/DESCRIPTION OF SECLUSION:

What was happening at the time the incident arose that necessitated the use of seclusion?


Description of the risk of immediate or imminent injury to the student secluded or others that required use of seclusion.

Description of other steps, including attempts at verbal de-escalation, to prevent the use of seclusion:

MONITORING OF SECLUSION

Regular evaluation of the student being secluded for signs of physical distress:
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________
Time: _______ Evaluation:____________________________________________

Time seclusion began:_____________________ Time seclusion ended:_________
Total time (in minutes): ____________________

CESSATION OF SECLUSION:
How seclusion ended (check all that apply):

  • Determination by staff member that student was no longer a risk to himself/herself or others
  • Intervention by administrator(s) to facilitate de-escalation
  • Law enforcement personnel arrived
  • Staff sought in-house assistance
  • Community emergency personnel arrived
  • Other (describe):

5144.1
Form 2
(continued)

Description of any injury to student and/or staff and any medical or first aid care provided:

Time medical staff checked injured person: ____________________________

Medical staff actions: _____________________________________________

Medical staff name: ______________________________________________

Incident report was filed with the following school district official:

_____________________________________________________________

Date:______________

FURTHER ACTION TO BE TAKEN: (Attach separate page if necessary)
The school will take the following actions (check all that apply)

  • Review incident with student to address behavior that precipitated the seclusion
  • Debrief staff regarding incident
  • Consider whether follow-up is necessary for students who witnessed the incident
  • Further contact with parents (describe):
  • Convene Crisis Team Meeting
  • Convene PPT to review/revise behavior intervention plan and/or IEP
  • Convene PPT to discuss functional behavior assessment

PARENT/GUARDIAN NOTIFICATION (required for all seclusions):

Parent who was verbally informed of this seclusion:

Name: _______________ Telephone Number: _______________
Date: _______________ Time: _______________
Called by: _______________ Title: _______________
Notice mailed to Parent: Yes_____ No_____
Mailed by: _______________ Title: _______________
Reviewed by:_____________________________________________ Date: _______________
(Program Administrator/ Team Leader)
Reviewed by:_____________________________________________ Date: _______________
(Director of Special Education)


5144.1
Form 2
(continued)

FOR DIRECTOR OR DESIGNEE USE ONLY

  • Reviewed seclusion report
  • Reviewed behavior plan, if applicable
  • In considering the effect of the seclusion on the student's established behavioral support of educational plan, I find the following: ______________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________
    ______________________________________________________



5144.1
Form 3
(STATE INCIDENT REPORTING FORM)

Report of Seclusion or Restraint
Incident Report

School District: _____________________________ School: __________
Address: __________ Address: __________
Phone: __________ Phone: __________
Name and Title of Person Preparing the report: __________
Incident: Seclusion __________ Restraint __________
Name of Student: __________ Student Disability: __________
Birth Date of Student: __________ Male/Female Race: __________

Describe the nature and use of seclusion: (Identify the emergency that necessitated the use of seclusion and how long the student was in seclusion.) __________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________

Describe the nature and use of restraint: (Identify the emergency that necessitated the use of restraint, time in restraint and type of restraint used.) _____________________________________________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________

Was the parent contacted within twenty-four hours of the use seclusion or restraint as an emergency intervention to prevent immediate or imminent injury to the person or others?

Yes ______ No ______ If "No", did the parent receive a copy of the incident report no later than five days from the date of the incident? Yes _____ No______

Was the student injured during the emergency use of restraint or seclusion?
Yes___ No ____ If "Yes", complete and attach a Report of Injury.

Suffield Public Schools 350 Mountain Road, Suffield, CT 06078
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