|Keep students safe, and parents informed|
|Ask the Senate to move ESHB 1688|
Restraint and isolation can cause children trauma, injury and death. School personnel can also be injured when implementing these techniques. And yet … schools can strap down or shut away a child and not inform parents. There is something fundamentally wrong about that. Please, take action.
Parents kept in the dark can’t work with the school, and they can’t help their child. There is a bill that passed the state House of Representatives unanimously that would mandate notification in certain instances. This bill may not make it through the Senate before cutoff. Please contact your legislators and ask them to help ensure the Senate votes on ESHB 1688.
Ideally all parents would be notified if their child was strapped down, laid upon or put into an isolation chamber, but this bill makes sure at least parents of kids with disabilities are informed. It is a step in the right direction.
Data from the U.S. Department of Education shows that nearly 40,000 students were physically restrained during the 2009-2010 school year, with about 70 percent of those students being students with disabilities. Kids deserve better, and nationally PTA is working to change the way schools manage behavior. We need to help school personnel understand the needs of their students and safely address the source of challenging behaviors. De-escalation techniques, conflict management and evidence-based positive behavioral interventions and supports are far better tools than straps and padded chambers. Or barricaded offices and closets.
But while we are working to change a resistant system, the least we can do is make sure parents of students with disabilities are informed when their child is restrained or isolated.
Please, take action. Kids with disabilities and their parents need PTA to speak up for them.
WA State PTA
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