[tabi] FW: Notice of Meeting/Workshop Hearing (Re Restraint Seclusion Rules)

  • From: "Woolverton, Stacia" <Stacia.Woolverton@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Vaughan, Bryan" <Bryan.Vaughan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Bullock, Jamie" <Jamie.Bullock@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Parham, Melanie" <Melanie.Parham@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Cain, Barbara" <Barbara.Cain@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Howell, David" <David.Howell@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Malley, Barbara" <Barbara.Malley@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 17 Jun 2009 10:41:18 -0400

From: Abbott, Lynn [mailto:Lynn.Abbott@xxxxxxxxx] 
Sent: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 10:02 AM

Dear Concerned Parents:


I wanted to follow up with each of you to let you know that the
Department has scheduled an additional opportunity to accept public
input at a public meeting on July 20, 2009 from 3:30 - 5:00 p.m.  The
Conference call number is 1-866-304-6786, code 14577631.  The notice of
the public meeting will appear in the June 26 Florida Administrative
Weekly.  The proposed rule language to be considered is below. 




This is a new rule.

6A-6.05271 -- Standards for the Use of Reasonable Force to Maintain a
Safe and Orderly Learning Environment.  This rule implements Sections
1012.75 and 1006.11, Florida Statutes, outlining administrative
standards for the use of reasonable force by school personnel to
maintain a safe and orderly learning environment.

(1) Definitions.  

(a) Reasonable force is defined as the appropriate level or degree of
physical force necessary to maintain a safe and orderly learning

(b) Physical restraint is defined as the use of force to restrict free
movement of all or part of a student's body.

(c) Time out is defined as a procedure in which access to varied sources
of reinforcement is removed or reduced for a particular time period
contingent on a response. The opportunity to receive reinforcement is
contingently removed for a specified time.  Either the student is
contingently removed from the reinforcing environment, or the
reinforcing environment is contingently removed for some stipulated

(d) Seclusion is defined as the confinement of a student in an enclosed
room for a set period of time during which the student is supervised but
physically prevented from leaving.

(2) General Requirements:

(a)            Force shall not be used as an instrument for the
educator's anger or frustration; or for routine classroom control. Force
shall not be used as the usual method of classroom management but may be
used when necessary to maintain a safe and orderly learning environment.

(b)            Positive interventions and alternatives to the use of
reasonable force should be attempted if circumstances permit.

(c)            The use of force shall cease upon restoration of a safe
and orderly learning environment.  

(d) Reasonable force shall not be excessive, disproportionate to the
threatened harm, nor cruel or unusual in nature. 

(e) Any use of reasonable force shall not restrict or obstruct a
student's airway, impair breathing, nor twist or bend a limb or joint in
an unnatural direction.  

(f) Reasonable force shall only be used with consideration of the

1. Severity of the offense;

2. Size and abilities of all parties;

3. Known mental or psychological abilities of the student(s);

4. Known medical conditions or special needs of the student(s);

5. Patterns of behavior exhibited by the student(s);

6. Potential physical dangers in using force; and

7. Preventative or defusing action taken prior to the use of force.

(3) Specific Requirements:

(a) When using time out, the individual must ensure the following:

1. The time out was preceded by other interventions which used positive
supports that were not effective;

2. The time out takes place in the classroom or other environment where
educational activities occur;

3. The student is not physically prevented from leaving time out;

4. The student is monitored for the duration of time out;

5. The time out is for a period of time that does not exceed one minute
for each year of the student's age; and

6. The time out ends immediately when the student is calm enough to
return to his/her seat, but not to exceed the limits in subparagraph
(3)(a)5. of this rule.

(b) Seclusion may be used only in the following circumstances:

1. As reasonably needed to respond to a person in control of a weapon or
other dangerous object;

2. As reasonably needed to maintain order or break up a fight; 

3. As reasonably needed for self defense; or

4. As reasonably needed when a student's behavior poses a threat of
imminent physical harm to self or others.

(c) Individuals using seclusion must have completed in-depth training as
determined by the district and must ensure:

1. The student is constantly monitored while in seclusion;

2. The student is released from seclusion upon cessation of the
behaviors that led to the seclusion or as otherwise specified in the
Individual Education Plan or Behavior Intervention Plan;

3. The confining space has been approved for such use by the local
education agency and meets the requirements of Rule 69A-58.0084, FAC.;

4. The space is appropriately lighted, ventilated and heated or cooled;

5. The space is free from objects that unreasonably expose the student
or others to harm.

(42) Circumstances for the use of reasonable force. 

 (a) The use of reasonable force is permitted, when necessary, to
prevent behavior disruptive to a safe and orderly classroom, learning
environment, or school related event in circumstances such as:

1. To quell a disturbance;

2. To obtain possession of a weapon or other dangerous object;

3. For self-defense;

4. To prevent harm or injury to the student's self or others;

5. To stop a crime in progress; and

6. To remove a violent, abusive, uncontrollable or significantly
disruptive student from the classroom or school-related event.

(b)  Example situations that may permit the use of reasonable force
include, but are not limited to: 

1. When a student physically attacks, or threatens to attack, a staff
member or another student;,

2. When students are fighting;, 

3. When a student is causing, or at risk of causing, injury or damage by
accident, rough play, or by misuse of dangerous materials, substances or

4. When a student is seriously disrupting the order of the classroom or
the school;, or,

5. When a student leaves or attempts to leave a class or school, if
leaving puts the student at risk.

(5) School district documenting, reporting and training requirements. 

(a) Documenting and reporting.  School personnel must document all
incidents of the use of physical restraint or seclusion and promptly
report them to the school principal or building-level administrator.
When physical restraint or seclusion has been used, tThe principal, in
coordination with the school staff member, shall attempt to notify the
student's parent or guardian, by phone, on the same day of the incident,
if possible.  All attempts to reach the parent or guardian by phone
shall be documented.  Within two (2) working days of the seclusion or
restraint, the school shall notify the parent or guardian in writing.
All uses of physical restraint or seclusion that have occurred at the
school must be reported to the district staff on at least a monthly
basis.  The documentation and notification to the parents or guardians
of the incident of physical restraint or seclusion shall include all of
the following: 

1. The date, time and description of the incident;

2. The school personnel involved in the incident;

3. The event that precipitated the use of physical restraint;

4. Any alternative measures used prior to the use of physical restraint,
if applicable;

5. Any injury to the student, school personnel or property as a result
of the incident, if known; and

6. The duration of time and a description of the restraint used.

(b) Dissemination and Training.  

1.  At the beginning of each school year, all school personnel shall be
informed of the laws, rules, and district policies regarding the use of
reasonable force.  

2.  Training on the use of physical restraint or seclusion shall be
required for appropriate staff assigned to students with disabilities.
The district must determine appropriate staff as required under this
subsection.  At a minimum, training must include: 

a. Methods and procedures for de-escalation of problematic behaviors;, 

b. Continuum of least to most restrictive techniques; 

c. Demonstrated proficiency of each technique in the continuum;

d. Techniques for implementing reasonable force when using multiple
staff members as a team;

e. Monitoring and assessment criteria required during use of reasonable

f. Identification of medical emergencies and basic response methods or

g. Strategies to re-engage or re-enter the student into the learning
environment; and

h. The district's documentation and reporting requirements.

Rulemaking Authority 1006.11(1),1012.75(2) FS. Law Implemented
1003.32(1)(j), 1006.11(1), 1012.75(2) FS. History - New




From: Phyllis M. [mailto:cvm514@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] 
Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 8:14 AM



        ----- Original Message ----- 

        From: Abbott, Lynn <mailto:Lynn.Abbott@xxxxxxxxx>  

        Dear Concerned Parents:


        After careful consideration, Commissioner Smith will recommend
to the Board that the rule on the use of reasonable force not be
presented for action but deferred to the September 15 State Board
Meeting.  The Department will use time over the summer to have one more
public hearing on the current proposed text.   This meeting will be
posted on our website as well as published in the Florida Administrative


        Thank you for your interest in this subject and we look forward
to working with you in the future.


        Lynn Abbott, Office of the

        Commissioner of Education and the

        State Board of Education





        From: Sharon Boyd [mailto:parentsinactionpia@xxxxxxxxx] 
        Sent: Monday, May 11, 2009 12:38 PM


        Dear Commissioner Smith,

        We received this notice via email and were quite unhappy to find
that during a time when government speaks constantly about transparency,
OUR Florida Department of Education is being anything but transparent. 


        We as parents have participated in a prior conference call re:
New Rule 6A-6.05271, F.A.C., Standards for the Use of Reasonable Force
to Maintain a Safe and Orderly Learning Environment in OUR CHILDREN'S
SCHOOLS.  In fact there were people from all across the state, so the
interest was widespread. We have been very clear regarding our concerns
with this rule, and the latitude that it gives to school personnel when
disciplining our children, especially those with special needs. Bills
that we attempted to pass this legislative session, died as FLDOE felt
the fiscal impact would be too great. In fact, there should not have
been a fiscal impact considering that Restraint/Seclusion/Aversive are
only supposed to be done by staff trained in the techniques and only as
a VERY last resort, therefore this training is or should already be part
of the budget!, Yet FLDOE was against, these bills that would protect
not only OUR children with special needs, but also teachers and other
students in the schools while still providing a Free and APPROPRIATE
Public Education in the Least Restrictive Environment. 


        This Workshop/Hearing is not accessible to the parents of the
children that this Rule will affect the most. The other meeting have
been available via conference call, with Public Comment allowed from the
Phone as well as in person. This is not the case with this meetingthus
far. We, as taxpayers, parents, and advocates for our children with
special needs have a right to be heard. We have a right to be a part of
the process, all the way to adoption, ESPECIALLY as this rule pertains
to people that we entrust their care to placing their hands on CHILDREN.
A meeting in Tampa is not easily accessible to most of us, because of
the sheer distance, the inability to get proper childcare while we
attend, and the expense. As we all know, there is not an abundance of
money available to assist any of us with day to day expenses, much less
travel for this meeting.


        Mr. Commissioner, We respectfully request that a phone
conference complete with an opportunity for us to speak up for our
children, their peers, and the teachers as well via PHONE CONFERENCE, as
done before, This Rule MUST Protect everyone involved, therefore
everyone of the stake holder's should come to the table to write the
Rule and adopt it.


        We look forward to hearing from you promptly, as we are sure
that you will agree that time is of the essence. Please let us know the
pertinent information: Date, Time,, Call In number/code, and method of
making Public Comment including how much time is allotted.


        Very truly yours,

        Concerned Florida Parents of Children with Autism and ASD

        Mark and Sharon Boyd 

        Gianni and Phyllis Musumeci

        Franco and Maria Cammarata,

        Kellie and Shawn Elders,

        Tuesday and Brad Williams,

        Frank and Joanne Morgan,

        Miguel and Ana Esparza,

        Ian and Tiffany Laganiere

        Paul and Jennifer Currie

        Cathy Cannivet

        Elizabeth Boyd

        Jheanelle Walters

        Anna Moore

        Yolanda Orndoff

        Virginia Kenyon

        Notice of Meeting/Workshop Hearing


        State Board of Education

        The Florida Department of Education announces a public meeting
to which all persons are invited.
        DATE AND TIME: May 19, 2009, 9:00 a.m.
        PLACE: Hillsborough Community College, Dale Mabry Campus,
Student Services Building, Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa, Florida 33630
        GENERAL SUBJECT MATTER TO BE CONSIDERED: The meeting agenda will
consist of approval of minutes of the State Board meetings held March
17, 2009 and April 22, 2009, and updates on various reports and status
of education initiatives by the Chairman and Commissioner. Items for
consideration include amendments to the following rules: Rule
6A-1.09441, F.A.C., Requirements for Programs and Courses Which are
Funded Through the Florida Education Finance Program and for Which the
Student May Earn Credit Toward High School Graduation; Rule 6A-1.099822,
F.A.C., School Improvement Rating for Alternative Schools; Rule
6A-4.0021, F.A.C., Florida Teacher Certification Examination; New Rule
6A-6.05271, F.A.C., Standards for the Use of Reasonable Force to
Maintain a Safe and Orderly Learning Environment; and New Rule of the
Commission on Independent Education, Rule 6E-5.001, F.A.C., Religious
Institution Letter of Exemption. Other items for consideration include:
Charter School Appeals: Excel Academy Charter School and Excel Academy
Middle Charter School vs. Miami Dade County School Board, Padah's
Academy vs. Hillsborough County School Board; Indian River State College
- Approval to Name Five Facilities Funded through the Community College
Facility Enhancement Challenge Grant Program; Approval of Adoption of
Resolutions Authorizing the Issuance and Sale of State of Florida, Full
Faith and Credit, State Board of Education Capital Outlay Bonds, 2009
Series A; and Approval of Brevard County as an Academically High
Performing District.

        A copy of the agenda may be obtained by contacting: Lynn Abbott
at (850)245-9661 or lynn.abbott@xxxxxxxxx or by visiting the
Department's website at: http://www.fldoe.org.
        Persons wishing to speak on a specific agenda item must submit
no later than May 15, 2009, a written request indicating the name of the
person wishing to address the Board, the organization represented if
any, and the specific agenda item they wish to address. The request
should be addressed to: Lynn Abbott, Agency Clerk, Department of
Education, 325 West Gaines Street, Room 1520, Tallahassee, Florida
32399-0400 or via email: lynn.abbott@xxxxxxxxxx
        Pursuant to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities
Act, any person requiring special accommodations to participate in this
workshop/meeting is asked to advise the agency at least 7 days before
the workshop/meeting by contacting: Lynn Abbott at (850)245-9661 or
lynn.abbott@ fldoe.org. If you are hearing or speech impaired, please
contact the agency using the Florida Relay Service, 1(800)955-8771 (TDD)
or 1(800)955-8770 (Voice).
        For more information, you may contact: Lynn Abbott at
(850)245-9661 or lynn.abbott@xxxxxxxxxx

Other related posts:

  • » [tabi] FW: Notice of Meeting/Workshop Hearing (Re Restraint Seclusion Rules) - Woolverton, Stacia