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Highline Public Schools
15675 Ambaum Blvd. SW Burien, WA 98166

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Highline Public Schools
15675 Ambaum Blvd. SW Burien, WA 98166

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Procedure 3246 - ISOLATION, RESTRAINT, AND OTHER USES OF REASONABLE FORCE

Definitions

  1. Physical force: Any use of bodily force or physical restriction that substantially immobilizes or reduces the free movement of a student.
  2. Chemical sprays: The use of chemicals, such as pepper spray, OcSpray or similar chemical used to control a student or limit a student’s freedom of movement.
  3. Restraint:  Physical intervention or force used to control a student, including the use of a restraint device.  It does not include appropriate use of a prescribed medical, orthopedic or therapeutic device when used as intended, such as to achieve proper body position, balance or alignment or to permit a student to safely participate in activities.
  4. Restraint Device:  A device used to assist in controlling a student, including, but not limited to metal handcuffs, plastic ties, ankle restraints, leather cuffs, other hospital-type restraints, pepper spray, or Tasers.  Restraint device does not mean a seat harness used to safety transport students.  This definition is consistent with RCW 28A.600.485(1)(c) and is not intended to endorse or encourage the use of such devices or techniques with students.
  5. Isolation:  Restricting a student alone in a room or any other form of enclosure, from the student may not leave.  It 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 behavior intervention plan.
  6. Imminent:  The state or condition of being likely to occur at any moment or near at hand, rather than distant or remote. 
  7. Likelihood of serious harm:  A substantial risk that physical harm will be inflicted by a student:
    1. Upon his or her own person, as evidenced by threats or attempts to commit suicide or inflict physical harm on oneself;
    2. 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;
    3. Upon the property of others, as evidenced by behavior that has caused substantial loss or damage to the property of others; or
    4. After the student has threatened the physical safety of another and has a history of one or more violent acts.
  8. School resource officer: A commissioned law enforcement officer who provides law enforcement services and may perform other duties for the district, and is assigned by the employing police department or agency to work in collaboration with the district.  School resource officers are not employees of the district.
  9. School Safety & Security officer: A classified or contracted school district employee who provides safety and security services in the district under the direction of a school administrator.
  10. De-escalation: The use of positive interventions and other district-approved strategies to defuse a student who has lost self-control, is non-compliant or is demonstrating unacceptable behavior. These strategies address behavior that is dangerous, disruptive or otherwise impedes the learning of a student or others.

Use of restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable force

·Restraint, isolation or other forms of reasonable force may be used to prevent or minimize imminent bodily harm to self or others.

·Restraint isolation or other forms of reasonable force may be used if de-escalation or other positive interventions fail or are inappropriate to protect district property, where there is a likelihood of serious harm occurring.

·Restraint, isolation or other forms of reasonable force may be used when a student has caused a substantial loss or damage to the property of others and the student’s behavior poses a substantial risk that such property damage will be inflicted.

·Restraint devices may be used as needed to obtain possession of a known or reasonably suspected weapon or other dangerous object on a person or within the control of a person.

·Consistent with the provisions found in chapter 392-172A WAC, nothing in this procedure precludes the use of restraint or isolation as part of a behavior intervention plan in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or by a student with a Section 504 plan, provided that the student requires more specified advanced educational planning and the parent/guardian agrees to the use of these techniques in writing.

·Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force will not be used as a form of discipline or punishment.

Use of force continuum

Whenever possible and practical, the use of force continuum will be followed for all students. District staff must only use the degree of force necessary to protect a student, students or staff from imminent bodily injury, substantial bodily harm or great bodily harm.

The generally accepted use of force continuum includes, in order:

1.    Staff/school security officer presence;

2.    Verbal/non-verbal communication, de-escalation;

3.    Physical interventions;

4.    Restraint devices;

5.    Sprays or electrical devices; and

6.    Other reasonable force as authorized by RCW 9A.16.020

Appropriate use of restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable force

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable force may be used to prevent or minimize imminent harm to self or others, or if de-escalation or other positive interventions fail or are inappropriate to protect district property, where there is a likelihood of such serious harm occurring.

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force may be used when a student has caused a substantial loss or damage to the property of others, and the student’s behavior poses a substantial risk that such property damage, will be inflicted.

· Restraint devices may be used as needed to obtain posses­sion of a known or reasonably-suspected weapon or other dangerous object on a person or within the control of a person.

· Consistent with the provisions found in chapter 392-172A WAC, nothing in this procedure precludes the use of restraint or isolation as part of a behavior intervention plan in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or a Section 504 Plan, provided that the student requires more specific advanced educational planning and the parent/guardian agrees to the use of these techniques in writing.  

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force will not be used as a form of discipline or punishment.

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force will not be used as an ini­tial response to destruction of property, school disruption, refusal of the student to comply with school rules, or a staff directive; or a verbal threat that does not constitute a threat of imminent bodily injury, unless other forms of de-escalation and positive interventions fail or are inappropriate.

· Restraint, isolation or other forms of reasonable physical force should not be used as an intervention if the school employee, school resource officer or school security officer knows that the student has a health condition or physical problem and the condition or problem would be exacerbated by the use of force.

Degree of force

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force must not be continued if a determination is made by the staff member administering the restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force that the student is no longer at risk of causing imminent bodily injury to him or herself or others; and

· Restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force must be administered in such a way so as to prevent or minimize physical harm to the student. If, at any time during the use of restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force, the student demonstrates significant physical distress, the technique must be reduced immediately and, if necessary, school staff must take immediate steps to seek medical assistance.

Monitoring

An adult must continually monitor any student when restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force is used. The monitoring must be conducted by direct observation of the student. Monitoring must include regularly evaluating the student for signs of physical distress.

Post-incident notification and review with parent/guardian

Within twenty-four (24) hours following the use of restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force with a student, the principal or designee must make a reasonable effort to verbally inform the student’s parent/guardian of the incident.  The principal or designee must also send written notification as soon as practical, but postmarked not later than five (5) business days after restraint, isolation, or other forms of reasonable physical force has been used with a student. 

The principal or designee will review the incident with the student and the parent/guardian (though not necessarily at the same time) to address the behavior that precipitated the use of the technique and the appropriateness of the response.  The principal or designee will review the incident with the staff person(s) who administered the restraint, isolation or other form of reasonable physical force to discuss whether proper procedures were followed and what staff training or support is needed to help the student avoid similar incidents.

IEPs and 504 plans will include the above procedures for notification of parents/guardians regarding the use of isolation and restraint on their student.

Staff training requirements:

All training will include instruction in positive management of student behavior, cultural sensitivity, effective communication for defusing and de-escalating disruptive or dangerous behavior and safe and appropriate use of force, isolation and restraint. Annually, admin­istrators will provide all staff with the district established policy and procedure regarding the use of reasonable force.

A. Physical force: All staff should be informed of de-escalation strategies and proper physical intervention procedures. Appropriate staff and those who are required or reason­ably anticipated to provide physical force intervention will be trained in the use of physical force intervention.

B. Restraint devices or chemical spray: Only staff trained and authorized to use restraint devices or chemical spray procedures will administer it to students. The appropriate personnel will include those staff members who are most likely to be called upon to use restraint devices or chemical spray to prevent or address disruptive or dangerous student behavior.

Incident report
Any school employee or school safety and security officer who uses any chemical spray, restraint, isolation or other form of reasonable  physical force, as defined in this procedure, 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 submit a written report of the incident to the district office.  The report will include:

1. The date and time of the incident;

2. The name and job title of the individual who administered the restraint,  isolation or other form of reasonable physical force;

3. A description of the activity that led  to the restraint, isolation, or other form of reasonable physical force;

4. The type of restraint,  isolation, or other form of reasonable physical force used, including the duration;

5. Whether the student or staff was physically injured during an incident involving  restraint, isolation, or other form of reasonable physical force;

6. Any medical care provided to the student or staff; and

7. Any recommendations for changing the nature or amount of resources available to the student and staff members in order to avoid similar incidents.

Submission of incident reports to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction

Beginning January 1, 2016 and annually by January 1 thereafter, the district will summarize the written incident reports described above and submit those summaries to OSPI.  The summaries will include

· The number of individual incidents of restraint and isolation

· The number of students involved in the incidents;

· The number of injuries to students and staff; and

· The types of restraint or isolation used

Annual report

The building administrator or a designee will maintain a log of all instances of use of force, as defined by this procedure, which will be presented to the superin­tendent annually. The superintendent will provide an annual report to the board regarding the district’s use of force, including identifying the individuals autho­rized and trained to use chemical restraint devices or isolation. 

Resolution of concerns about the use of force incident:

A student or his/her parent or guardian who has concerns regarding a specific incident involving use of force, restraint or isolation may seek to resolve the concern by using the district’s complaint process which is set forth in Policy 4220 Complaints Concerning Staff or Programs. 

Highline School District 401
Adopted by the Superintendent: 01.14; 10.15
Classification: Priority