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Special education restraint bill passes House

by Kimberly Miller | April 27th, 2010

The Florida House passed a bill Monday that establishes standards and procedures regarding the use, monitoring, documentation and reporting of seclusion and restraint on students with disabilities.

The legislation, HB 1073, prohibits school personnel from using a mechanical or manual physical restraint that restricts a student’s breathing. It also bans school employees from locking, or physically blocking a student in a room that does not meet rules of the state fire marshal for seclusion time-out rooms.

“I will continue to advocate for children with disabilities to ensure their safety, while maintaining a positive learning environment,” said bill sponsor Rep. Dorothy Hukill, R-Port Orange, in a press release. “This bill has gone through a long process of review and consideration and I am pleased that Florida is heading in the right direction to enhance protections for our most vulnerable children.”

The proposal also requires schools to write incident reports within 24 hours and to make parents or guardians aware of an incident.

The bill now moves to the Senate.

7 Responses to “Special education restraint bill passes House”

  1. Robert Wesley Says:

    I read the bill and it will do nothing to protect my child. What happened to the original bill HB81 that was going around? This new bill SUCKS!!!

  2. lisa Says:

    Anyone supporting this bill should be ashamed of themselves. It does nothing to address the abuses taking place on disabled children in schools. It is so unfortunate that we cannot count on lawmakers to protect children. How many more children will now suffer?

  3. Tokay Says:

    Was there a law already on the books? If not, this may at least help prevent some of the abuse disabled children suffer at the hands of teachers.

  4. Lisa Says:

    How? What specifically does it protect? This law will make no difference what so ever. The children were completely disregarded. this law is just “fluff” Hopefully the federal law will pass and erase this one

  5. Kathy Says:

    Mrs. Hukill, you had a good intention but with all my respect, this bill does not protect the children with disabilities, what it does is to formalize restraints and seclusion procedures that replace the implementation of positive behavior interventions. I hope this bill be kill as soon as possible.

  6. Disgusted Says:

    Well at least parents will know who to blame when the abuse gets worse….

    Kimberly did you ask what restraints Hukill is talking about??? No restraints are safe so exactly which ones, by name please, will be banned?

    Ok so now they cant lock the door & the fire marshal must approve the room. I didnt realize the fire marshall knows so much about seclusion rooms.Kimberly, I noticed she left out that they got our children a light in the seclusion rtooms. Schools can no longer lock our children in a dark room or closet.I wonder why she left that out?

    Kimberly you need to speak to parent/Advocates!

  7. Ray Says:

    Anyone looking out for the DISABLED childrens’ interest? I am still trying to figure out the point of this bill other than to try to shut parents or advocates up. Maybe someone should ask why protections in schools are intentionally left out when they exist everywhere else!

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