In light of a recent media investigation which uncovered an alarming number of cases of restraints and seclusion in Ohio schools, Kim Sanders, an internationally known behavioral health specialist, today urged legislators to protect the state’s children by completely eliminating the use of these discipline techniques.

Currently, Ohio policy states that restraint and seclusion is allowed only if a child is “an immediate risk of physical harm to the student or other” and all cases should be reported to the state Department of Education. However, based upon the investigative report by the Columbia ABC affiliate, 75 districts are not being proactive in seeking alternative behavioral techniques.

Sanders stated that if teachers and staff are properly trained, situations can be safely managed without the need to subject a child to physical or emotional submission. She urged officials to support legislation that provides better training and eliminates all use of restraints and seclusion, such as the pending legislation by Senator Charleta B. Tavares.

“By creating regulations that prohibit all use of restraint and seclusion and offering other physical alternatives to manage aggression, you are acting in the best interest of all parties involved,” stated Kim Sanders, President of Ukeru Systems. “Studies show that these type of behavioral management techniquesonly perpetuate aggression and induce trauma to all involved, including the other children in the classroom.”

Staff report