Protect Children’s Safety and Dignity: Recommendations on Restraint and Seclusion in Schools

Cover of the report. It shows a young girl sitting alone in a room with her head between her knees.

California has a responsibility to its children, to ensure they are protected from abuse, treated with dignity, and attend safe schools. We must do more to protect them and bring California in line with federal recommendations and best practices as outlined in this report.

Protect Children’s Safety and Dignity:
Recommendations on Restraint and Seclusion in Schools

 
California has a responsibility to its children, to ensure they are protected from abuse, treated with dignity, and attend safe schools. We must do more to protect them and bring California in line with federal recommendations and best practices as outlined in this report.

The use of restraint and seclusion in schools can result in death and serious injury for children with disabilities. In 2018, California passed AB 2657, a Disability Rights California (DRC) sponsored bill that provides basic protections against unnecessary and inappropriate behavioral restraints and seclusions. While this was an important first step, DRC strongly urges California to adopt additional reforms which will improve the safety and welfare of California students. DRC looked at 56 cases of restraint over the last four years. Some of the findings included in this report:

  • Prone restraint places children with disabilities at serious risk of death or injury.
  • Several school districts were using restraints on students over 100-200 times in a given school year instead of positive behavioral strategies.
  • School districts failed to timely notify parents and complete documentation when using restraint or seclusion.

Please download our report for findings and recommendations, and support our efforts to improve the safety and welfare of California students.