CORPORAL PUNISHMENT, PHYSICAL RESTRAINT, SECLUSION AND ISOLATION
- Confinement—Preventing a student from leaving an enclosed space.
- Corporal Punishment—The use of physical force as a method of correcting student behavior.
- Emergency Situation—Circumstances in which a student's behavior poses a serious threat of imminent physical harm to self, others, or the destruction of property.
- Isolation—Confinement of a student alone in an enclosed space without locking hardware for reasons other than those in which supervised in-school suspension, detention or time-out are used as disciplinary consequences.
- Locking Hardware—Mechanical, electrical or other material devices used to lock a door or to prevent egress from a confined area.
- Physical Restraint—Use of person-to-person physical contact to restrict the free movement of all or a portion of a student's body. It does not include briefly holding a student without undue force for instructional or other purposes, briefly holding a student to calm the student, taking a student's hand to transport him/her for safety purposes, physical escort, or intervening in a fight.
- Seclusion—Confinement of a student alone in an enclosed space from which the student is physically prevented from leaving by locking hardware.
- Time-out—Brief removal from ongoing educational activities that does not meet the definition of, and is a lesser response than, seclusion or isolation. The purpose of time-out is to separate the student from attention of staff and other students.
District employees and volunteers are prohibited from administering corporal punishment to students attending the Ritenour schools, and from causing such punishment to be administered.
In the cases below, staff members are permitted to use the amount of restraint deemed reasonably necessary to:
- Prevent a student from hurting himself/herself,
- Protect other students from injury,
- Protect the teacher’s own well-being,
- Prevent destruction of school or personal property.
Isolation of a student is authorized only:
- In an emergency situation, or
- When less restrictive measures have not effectively de-escalated a difficult situation, or
- With parental approval as specified in a student's IEP, a Section 504 plan, or other agreed-upon plan to address a student's behavior.
A student in isolation must be monitored by district staff in face-to-face proximity of the student unless the safety of persons involved is significantly compromised, in which case technology supported monitoring may be used. The age of the student and the circumstances should dictate the length of the isolation, which should not exceed approximately 40 minutes in any case, without a reassessment of the situation and consultation with a parent and/or administrative staff member, or unless provided for in an IEP, Section 504 plan, or other previous agreement with parents to address the child's behavior.
Seclusion of a student is authorized only in an emergency situation while awaiting the arrival of law enforcement personnel.
Notice to Parent
Except as otherwise specified in a student's IEP or Section 504 plan, the parent of the student will be notified of the incident as soon as practical, but no later than the end of the day during which the incident occurred, if possible. Within five school days of the incident, the parent should receive a written report which includes:
- Date, time of day, location, duration and description of the incident and interventions used,
- Event(s) that led up to the incident, and
- Nature and extent of any injury to the student.
Follow-up and Documentation
Within two days following any emergency situation in which a staff member uses physical restraint, isolation or seclusion, he/she must prepare a written report which includes:
- Date of incident,
- Name and age of the student involved,
- Names of staff members involved,
- Description of the circumstances which led to the action taken by the staff member, (Continued on next page)
- Description of the nature of the action taken,
- Any significant consequences of the action,
- If injuries occurred, a description of the injuries and who suffered them,
- Whether student was disciplined,
- Whether student has an IEP or Section 504 plan, and
- When and how parents were notified.
If needed, a follow-up meeting of staff members involved and the principal will also be held. A written report of the incident is to be kept on file by the building principal and a copy forwarded to the administrator for Student Services.