- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 8, 2016

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Students in Jefferson County Public Schools were physically held down or confined to a room more than 4,400 times last school year - but the school district only correctly reported 174 of those instances to the state.

The Courier-Journal reports (http://cjky.it/1QDM9ut) that the state data says JCPS students were restrained 168 times last school year and secluded six times. JCPS says students were actually restrained or secluded 4,403 times last year.

Superintendent Donna Hargens says the problem arose when schools reported problems to an internal database, not the state. In an email to state Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt, Hargens said JCPS is working to figure out how to import the data to the state database.

Per Kentucky’s 2013 regulation, restraint and seclusion may only be used if a student’s behavior poses imminent danger or physical harm to themselves or others.

Experts say it is important to correctly report how often students are confined or restrained.

“When good data isn’t collected, restraint and seclusion remain hidden and secret, and their use increases,” said Jessica Butler, a Washington, D.C.-based national disability advocate. “For years, there have been reports that schools don’t tell parents, even in states with notice requirements. These are such dangerous practices … that good data collection is essential.”

Hargens said JCPS is looking at options to get the information corrected, including manually entering the information into the state database.

“We will do whatever we need to do now that we know about this,” she said.

___

Information from: The Courier-Journal, http://www.courier-journal.com

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide