Restraint or Isolation of Students
This district is committed to providing a safe and beneficial learning environment for all students. In accordance with state law, the use of restraint and isolation is only permitted when reasonably necessary to control spontaneous behavior that poses an imminent likelihood of serious harm.
The following procedures are established for the appropriate use of restraint and isolation including parent/guardian notification in accordance with RCW 28A 600.485.
Restraint: Physical intervention or force used to control a student, including the use of a restraint device to restrict a student’s freedom of movement. Restraint does not include use of a seat harness used to safely transport students; use of other safety devices including safety belts for wheelchairs, changing tables, and booster seats; or other ambulatory or therapeutic devices when used for the device’s intended purpose for the safety of a student.
Isolation: Restricting the student alone within a room or any other form of enclosure, from which the student may not leave. Isolation does not include situations where students in a classroom are directed to leave the classroom due to the unsafe behavior(s) of a classmate who remains in the room with staff supervision, unless the remaining classmate is being physically blocked from also leaving the room. Isolation does not include a student’s voluntary use of a quiet space for self-calming, or temporary removal of a student from his or her regular instructional area to an unlocked area for purposes of carrying out an appropriate positive behavioral intervention plan.
Imminent: Likely to occur at any moment or near at hand, rather than distant or remote.
Likelihood of serious harm:
- A substantial risk that:
- Physical harm will be self-inflicted, as evidenced by threats or attempts to commit suicide or inflict physical harm upon oneself;
- Physical harm will be inflicted upon another, as evidenced by behavior that has caused such harm or that places another person or persons in reasonable fear of sustaining such harm; or
- Physical harm will be inflicted upon the property of others, as evidenced by behavior that has caused substantial loss or damage to the property of others; or
- The person has threatened the physical safety of another and has a history of one or more violent acts.
Limitations on the Use of Restraint or Isolation:
Restraint or isolation must be closely monitored to prevent harm to the student, and must be discontinued as soon as the likelihood of serious harm has dissipated.
Restraint shall not interfere with a student’s breathing. If a student is not capable of releasing himself or herself from a restraint device, the student must continuously remain within view of an adult responsible for supervising the student.
An isolation enclosure must be ventilated, lighted, and temperature controlled for purposes of human occupancy, and must permit continuous visual monitoring of the student from outside the enclosure. An adult responsible for supervising the student must remain in visual or auditory range of the student at all times. If the student is not capable of releasing himself or herself from the enclosure, the student must continuously remain within view of an adult responsible for supervising the student.
Processing the Incident
Following the release of a student from the use of restraint or isolation, the school will implement these procedures.
- Review the incident with the student and the parent or guardian to address the behavior that precipitated the use of restraint or isolation and the appropriateness of the response.
- Review the incident with the staff member(s) who administered the restraint or isolation to discuss whether proper procedures were followed and what training or support the staff member needs to help the student avoid similar incidents.
Any school employee, school resource officer, or school security officer who uses restraint or isolation on a student during school-sponsored instruction or activities will inform the building administrator or a designee as soon as possible, and within two business days the building administrator or designee will consult with the individual who used restraint or isolation to complete a written report of the incident, which the building administrator will submit to the district office.
The report will include:
- The date and time of the incident;
- The name and job title of the individual(s) who administered the restraint or isolation;
- A description of the activity that led to the restraint or isolation;
- The type of restraint or isolation used, including the duration; and
- Whether the student or staff was physically injured during the restraint or isolation and what medical care, if any, was provided.
- Any recommendations for changing the nature or amount of resources available to the student and staff members in order to avoid similar incidents.
Informing Parent or Guardian of Incident
The principal or a designee will make a reasonable effort to verbally inform the student’s parents or guardians of the incident within twenty four hours and will send written notification as soon as practical but postmarked no later than five business days after the restraint or isolation occurred. If the school customarily provides the parent or guardian with school-related information in a language other than English, the written report will be provided to the parent in that language.
June 20, 2016