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Monday, October 24, 2011

Restraint, Seclusion, and the Education Bill

Disability Scoop reports on the absence of the restraint issue from the ESEA reauthorization:

Despite efforts to address restraint and seclusion of students with disabilities within an overhaul of the nation’s primary education law, the issue was left out when the U.S. Senate moved forward on a bill this week.

Last year, when proposed legislation to curb the use of restraint and seclusion in schools fell apart, Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, who chairs the U.S. Senate’s education committee signaled his intention to address the issue in a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, or ESEA, which is also known as No Child Left Behind.

But on Thursday, Harkin’s committee approved a bill to update ESEA that includes no mention of restraint and seclusion. The reason: Harkin said he was not able to get bipartisan support on the issue. (Read all of Disability Scoop’s coverage of restraint and seclusion >>)

Now, the senator says he hopes to add provisions related to restraint and seclusion when the legislation is considered by the full Senate.