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Your contribution is more than just a donation; it helps us create safer schools for students, teachers, and staff. Your donation helps us promote a trauma-informed, neuroscience-aligned, relationship-driven approach to supporting all children. We can and must do better for our children.

About seclusion and restraint

Restraint and seclusion are crisis management strategies that are used in many schools across the nation and the world. Physical Restraint, is exactly what it sounds like, it is a personal restriction that immobilizes or reduces the ability of a student to move his or her torso, arms, legs or head freely. Seclusion is the involuntary confinement of a student alone in a room or area from which the student is physically prevented from leaving. These interventions are dangerous and have led to serious injuries and even death in students, teachers and staff.

Learn more about restraint and seclusion

According to federal guidance restraint and/or seclusion should never be used except in situations where a child’s behavior poses an imminent danger of serious physical harm to self or others, and restraint and seclusion should be avoided to the greatest extent possible without endangering the safety of students and staff. The important wording here is “serious physical harm”, these measures are not intended merely for unsafe situations, but rather to situations that could result in death or serious bodily injury. As such based on federal guidance restraint and seclusion should be exceedingly rare. However, it has been found that restraint and seclusion are occurring far more frequently in schools across the nation and are not always limited to situations that involve imminent serious physical harm.

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Latest Stories

Maryland State Department of Education promises to take action to prevent the illegal and discriminatory use of restraint and seclusion in schools

December 30th, 2021 the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) published a press release that says that MSDE will takes active measures to prevent the illegal and discriminatory use of restraint and seclusion in Maryland Schools. MSDE Superintendent Choudhury has directed a top-to-bottom review of state regulations, policies, and procedures on restraint and seclusion; and moves to eliminate the practice.

It’s time for accountability in Frederick County Public Schools

Frederick County Public Schools was recently investigated by the Department of Justice for violating Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by unlawfully restraining and secluding disabled students. There were thousand of instances of restraint and seclusion used in the district that violated the civil rights of disabled students.

A letter to Frederick County Public Schools’ Board on the Department of Justice settlement

well as the children and families of Frederick County Public Schools. AASR is a Maryland nonprofit corporation operating through a fiscal sponsorship with Players Philanthropy Fund. We are a community of over 16,000 parents, self-advocates, teachers, school administrators, paraprofessionals, attorneys, related service providers, and others working together to influence change in the way we support children who may exhibit behaviors of concern. The mission of AASR is to educate the public and to connect people who are dedicated to changing minds, laws, policies, and practices so that restraint, seclusion, suspension, expulsion, corporal punishment, and other harmful practices are eliminated from schools across the nation and beyond. Our vision is safer schools for students, teachers, and staff. 

A letter to New Hanover County Schools’ Board on the district’s excessive use of restraint and seclusion

I am writing to you today on behalf of the Alliance Against Seclusion and Restraint (AASR) and the children of New Hanover County Public Schools. AASR is a community of over 16,000 parents, self-advocates, teachers, school administrators, paraprofessionals, attorneys, related service providers, and others working together to influence change in the way we support children who may exhibit behaviors of concern. The mission of AASR is to educate the public and to connect people who are dedicated to changing minds, laws, policies, and practices so that restraint, seclusion, suspension, expulsion, corporal punishment, and other abusive practices are eliminated from schools across the nation and beyond. Our vision is safer schools for students, teachers, and staff. 

The healing power of cooking

Our son Cole was born fifteen years ago with Down syndrome, and I often say that when he came into this world, he flipped our world upside down in the best possible way.  Cole has always been a compassionate, good-natured, and funny guy.  He has taught us more lessons than I can possibly recount.  But the biggest lesson of all is that if we trust in Cole and follow his lead, he can overcome any challenge that comes his way. 

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