Pharos-Tribune

Local News

February 8, 2013

Head proposes rules on time-outs, restraint

Cass County’s state Senator is calling for the state legislature to require schools to develop policies on the use of seclusion and restraint.

Local educators say they’re way ahead of him.

Sen. Randy Head, a Republican, introduced Senate Bill 345 to require school corporations, including charter schools, to develop a policy that reduces the use of physical restraint or seclusion when students become aggressive.

The state autism commission, of which Head is a member, reviewed evidence of the “horrible, but unintended consequences restraint and seclusion can have,” he said.

So he wants to require schools to state how staff will promote appropriate student behavior; to outline intent to use prevention, positive behavior intervention and conflict de-escalation before resorting to seclusion or restraint; and to guarantee that if seclusion or restraint is used, it’s only as a last resort for safety reasons, after some other procedure has already been used.

The Indiana Department of Education already publishes a four-page document of policy guidelines for the use of seclusion and restraint, but it’s a recommendation.

“The Department of Education says ‘may’ and we say ‘shall,’” explained Head on Thursday.

He hadn’t read the IDOE guidelines, so he couldn’t outline any differences between its guides and the rules he’s proposing, but he said the bill will also require schools to report all use of seclusion and restraint to the IDOE so the department can begin tracking it.

“I think that they’re very rare already,” said Head. But he’s trying to avoid what’s happened in other states — where untrained people “that act in good faith” take actions that have unintended consequences.

“Most schools do it right, I think,” he said — adding that when he was “principal for a day” at one of Logansport’s elementary schools, the procedure they followed for putting a student in time-out would comply with the rules he’s proposing.

“They always have somebody in there observing the child,” Head explained. “It’s not a situation where the child is left alone and could harm themselves.”

Logansport schools already have a policy against unreasonable force and fear as a school discipline practice. It restricts reasonable force and restraint to situations where someone’s physical safety is compromised.

“I don’t know why you wouldn’t have the policy, to make sure that everybody’s properly trained, because kids’ safety is very important — and actually the safety of everybody,” said Michele Starkey, superintendent of the Logansport schools.

Three supervisors at Logansport Area Joint Special Services Education train teachers and support staff at 10 area school corporations on the proper use of seclusion and restraint.

Melanie Green, one of the LAJSSE supervisors, said the training she administers using curriculum from the Crisis Prevention Institute focuses on avoiding those measures.

“Ninety percent of that training is prevention techniques and understanding levels of crisis so that you can intervene early and appropriately,” said Green.

She and the other two trainers take new staff members through an initial two-day training. Then everyone goes through an annual half- or full-day review.

LAJSSE staff don’t have exact figures on how often seclusion or restraint is used in Logansport schools.

“It goes in cycles,” said Cinda Milan, another LAJSSE supervisor and trainer. “There might be a time that you might have a restraint a couple times a week, and then there might be several weeks where you don’t have any.”

However, each school does keep tabs on its time-outs, including who’s in time-out and for what purpose.

“When you think of the schools, you’re not hearing that there’s lots of restraining going on in the schools,” Milan added. “There’s very little happening.... I hope that the public knows that.”

Sarah Einselen is news editor for the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at sarah.einselen@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5151.

For more on this story and other local news, subscribe to The Pharos-Tribune eEdition, or our print edition

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Escapee Officers continue to search for Logansport State Hospital escapee

    CAMDEN — The inmate who escaped from the Logansport State Hospital is believed to have been seen near 750 North and 100 East in Carroll County, a member of the Carroll County Sheriff's Department says. Carroll County Sheriff's Department Major Tobe L

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • Police Blotter: July 25, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 25, 2014

  • NWS-PT072514-Begindergarten-BCM Focus on kids: Data shows rising poverty, but better education Indiana and Cass County children are making improvements in education, but the poverty rate still stays high, according to national data. The Annie E. Casey Foundation 2014 Kids Count Data Book released its annual evaluation of the nation’s children

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Residents oppose proposed gravel pit in Walton

    WALTON — Engineering Aggregates Corp. wants to dig a gravel pit, and residents around the proposed site are worried that it would interfere with what several called a peaceful country lifestyle. Engineering Aggregates has petitioned the Cass County B

    July 25, 2014 1 Link

  • NWS-PT072514 Billeaud Mug Guilty verdict in flag beating A Logansport man was found guilty in a jury trial Wednesday on counts of felony battery after an altercation in which he was charged with beating a man with a board holding an American flag.Jeffrey Billeaud Jr., 39, was found guilty of battery by mea

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS-PT072514 Patacsil-kmv Logan coaching legend Patacsil dies at 86 Logansport and Purdue University lost a giant among sports leaders Wednesday. Former Purdue great and former Logansport High School wrestling coach and educator Joe Patacsil passed away in his home.When his sons were leading the Berries wrestling pro

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Burlington woman charged in May fatal crash KOKOMO — Police arrested a 26-year-old Burlington woman accused of causing a fatal crash while driving drunk Wednesday.Howard County sheriff deputies served a warrant on Casie E. Johnson charging her with a B felony causing death while operating a ve

    July 25, 2014

  • Robbins Christopher.jpg UPDATE: State Hospital escapee identified

    Police are seeking an escaped inmate of Logansport State Hospital with a history of residential entry and battery.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police Blotter: July 24, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 24, 2014

  • NWS-PT072414 shrek2.jpg Cast of believers: Children take stage this weekend As almost 50 children and teenagers crowded around the edge of the stage at McHale Performing Arts Center, Dan McDonald counted off: one, two, three... “I believe!”It was the start of tech rehearsal for Junior Civic Theater’s production of “Shrek: Th

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

Featured Ads
More pharostribune.com
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites Anti-violence Advocate Killed, but Not Silenced. Dempsey: Putin May Light Fire and Lose Control Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

The Pence administration continues to cut Indiana agency budgets despite a state surplus of $2 billion. Is this wise management of state funds?

Yes
No
Not sure
     View Results
eEdition