Florida Senate - 2017                                    SB 1418
       By Senator Flores
       39-00563-17                                           20171418__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the seclusion and restraint of
    3         students with disabilities in public schools; amending
    4         s. 1003.573, F.S.; defining terms; providing
    5         legislative findings and intent; providing
    6         requirements for the use of manual physical restraint
    7         by school personnel; prohibiting specified manual
    8         physical restraint techniques; requiring each school
    9         to ensure that a student who has been manually
   10         physically restrained receive a medical evaluation
   11         after such restraint; prohibiting school personnel
   12         from placing a student in seclusion; providing
   13         requirements for the use of time-out; requiring that a
   14         school district report its procedures for training and
   15         certification in the use of manual physical restraint
   16         to the Department of Education; providing requirements
   17         for such training and certification; requiring each
   18         school district to annually provide refresher
   19         certification; requiring a school district’s manual
   20         physical restraint policies to address certain issues;
   21         requiring that a school review a student’s functional
   22         behavior assessment and positive behavioral
   23         intervention plan under certain circumstances;
   24         requiring that parents be notified of a school
   25         district’s policies regarding the use of manual
   26         physical restraint; revising information to be
   27         included in a school incident report; requiring that
   28         each school send a redacted copy of any incident
   29         report or other documentation to Disability Rights
   30         Florida; requiring that the department make available
   31         on its website data of incidents of manual physical
   32         restraint; requiring that each school district develop
   33         policies and procedures governing the authorized use
   34         of manual physical restraint, the personnel authorized
   35         to use such restraint, training procedures, analysis
   36         of data, and the reduction of the use of manual
   37         physical restraint; requiring that any revisions to a
   38         school district’s policies and procedures be filed
   39         with the bureau chief of the Bureau of Exceptional
   40         Education and Student Services; providing an effective
   41         date.
   43  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   45         Section 1. Section 1003.573, Florida Statutes, is amended
   46  to read:
   47         1003.573 Seclusion and Use of restraint of and seclusion on
   48  students with disabilities in public schools.—
   49         (1) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
   50         (a) “Department” means the Department of Education.
   51         (b) “Imminent risk of serious injury or death” means the
   52  impending risk of a significant injury, such as a laceration,
   53  bone fracture, substantial hematoma, or injury to an internal
   54  organ, or death.
   55         (c) “Manual physical restraint” means the use of physical
   56  restraint techniques that involve physical force applied by a
   57  teacher or other staff member to restrict the movement of all or
   58  part of a student’s body.
   59         (d) “Mechanical restraint” means the use of a physical
   60  device that restricts a student’s movement or restricts the
   61  normal function of a student’s body. The term includes the use
   62  of straps, belts, tie-downs, calming blankets, and chairs with
   63  straps; however, the term does not include the use of any of the
   64  following:
   65         1. Medical protective equipment.
   66         2. Physical equipment or orthopedic appliances, surgical
   67  dressings or bandages, or supportive body bands or other
   68  restraints necessary for ongoing medical treatment in the
   69  educational setting.
   70         3. Devices used to support functional body position or
   71  proper balance, or to prevent a person from falling out of a bed
   72  or a wheelchair, except when such a device is used for a purpose
   73  other than supporting a body position or proper balance, such as
   74  coercion, discipline, convenience, or retaliation, to prevent
   75  imminent risk of serious injury or death of the student or
   76  others, or for any other behavior management reason.
   77         4. Equipment used for safety during transportation, such as
   78  seatbelts or wheelchair tie-downs.
   79         (e) “Medical protective equipment” means health-related
   80  protective devices prescribed by a physician or dentist for use
   81  as student protection in response to an existing medical
   82  condition.
   83         (f) “Seclusion” means the removal of a student from an
   84  educational environment, involuntary confinement of the student
   85  in a room or area, and prevention of the student from leaving
   86  the room or area if achieved by locking the door or otherwise
   87  physically blocking the student’s way, threatening physical
   88  force or other consequences, or using physical force. The term
   89  does not include the use of time-out.
   90         (g) “Student” means a student with a disability.
   91         (h) “Time-out” means a procedure in which access to varied
   92  sources of reinforcement is removed or reduced for a particular
   93  time period contingent on a response, either by removing a
   94  student from the reinforcing environment or removing the
   95  reinforcing environment from the student for some stipulated
   96  duration. The term does not include the use of a locked room, a
   97  blocked exit, or physical force or threats.
   99         (a) The Legislature finds that public schools have a
  100  responsibility to ensure that each student is treated with
  101  respect and dignity in a trauma-informed environment that
  102  provides for the physical safety and security of the student and
  103  others.
  104         (b) The Legislature finds that students, educators, and
  105  families are concerned about the use of seclusion and restraint,
  106  particularly on students in special education programs, in
  107  response to a serious problem behavior that places the student
  108  or others at risk of injury or harm. The Legislature is
  109  concerned that seclusion and restraint are prone to
  110  misapplication and abuse and place a student at an equal or
  111  greater risk than the risk posed by the student’s problem
  112  behavior. Moreover, the Legislature is concerned about the
  113  inadequate documentation of seclusion or restraint procedures,
  114  the failure to notify parents when seclusion or restraint is
  115  applied, and the failure to use data to analyze and address the
  116  cause of the precipitating behavior. Particular concerns include
  117  all of the following:
  118         1. The inappropriate selection and implementation of
  119  seclusion or restraint as a treatment or behavioral intervention
  120  rather than as a safety procedure.
  121         2. The inappropriate use of seclusion or restraint in
  122  connection with behaviors, such as noncompliance, threats, or
  123  disruption, which do not place the student or others at risk of
  124  injury or harm.
  125         3. The potential for injury or harm to students, peers, or
  126  staff during attempts to implement seclusion or restraint.
  127         4. The potential for increased risk of injury or harm when
  128  seclusion or restraint is implemented by staff who are not
  129  adequately trained.
  130         5. The potential for the inadvertent reinforcement or
  131  magnification of the problem behavior through the use of
  132  seclusion or restraint.
  133         6. The implementation of seclusion or restraint
  134  independently of comprehensive, function-based behavioral
  135  intervention plans.
  136         (c) The Legislature finds that the majority of problem
  137  behaviors that are currently used to justify seclusion or
  138  restraint could be prevented with early identification and
  139  intensive early intervention. The need for seclusion or
  140  restraint is, in part, a result of an insufficient investment in
  141  prevention efforts. The Legislature further finds that the use
  142  of seclusion or restraint may produce trauma in students. For
  143  students who are already experiencing trauma, the use may cause
  144  retraumatization. The lasting effects of unaddressed childhood
  145  trauma place a heavy burden on individuals, families, and
  146  communities. Research has shown that trauma significantly
  147  increases the risk of mental health problems, difficulties with
  148  social relationships and behavior, physical illness, and poor
  149  school performance.
  150         (d) The Legislature intends that students be free from
  151  seclusion and free from the abusive and unnecessary use of
  152  restraint in public schools. The Legislature further intends to
  153  achieve an ongoing reduction of, leading to the prevention of,
  154  the use of manual physical restraint in public schools and,
  155  specifically, to prohibit the use of seclusion, prone and supine
  156  restraint, and mechanical restraint on students. The Legislature
  157  also intends that manual physical restraint be used only when an
  158  imminent risk of serious injury or death exists; that manual
  159  physical restraint not be employed as punishment, for the
  160  convenience of staff, or as a substitute for a positive
  161  behavior-support plan; and that, if manual physical restraint is
  162  used, persons applying such restraint impose the fewest possible
  163  restrictions and discontinue the restraint as soon as the threat
  164  of imminent risk of serious injury or death ceases.
  166         (a) Manual physical restraint may be used only when there
  167  is an imminent risk of serious injury or death to the student or
  168  others and only for the period of time necessary to eliminate
  169  such risk.
  170         (b) The degree of force applied during manual physical
  171  restraint must be only that degree of force necessary to protect
  172  the student or others from bodily injury or death.
  173         (c) Manual physical restraint shall be used only by school
  174  personnel who are qualified and certified to use the district
  175  approved methods for the appropriate application of specific
  176  restraint techniques. School personnel who have received
  177  training that is not associated with their employment with the
  178  school district, such as a former law enforcement officer who is
  179  now a teacher, shall be certified in the specific district
  180  approved techniques and may not apply techniques or procedures
  181  acquired elsewhere.
  182         (d) School personnel may not use any of the following
  183  manual physical restraint techniques on a student:
  184         1. Prone and supine restraint.
  185         2. Pain inducement to obtain compliance.
  186         3. Bone locks.
  187         4. Hyperextension of joints.
  188         5. Peer restraint.
  189         6. Mechanical restraint.
  190         7. Pressure or weight on the chest, lungs, sternum,
  191  diaphragm, back, or abdomen, causing chest compression.
  192         8. Straddling or sitting on any part of the body or any
  193  maneuver that places pressure, weight, or leverage on the neck
  194  or throat, on an artery, or on the back of the head or neck or
  195  that otherwise obstructs or restricts the circulation of blood
  196  or obstructs an airway.
  197         9. Any type of choking, including hand chokes, and any type
  198  of neck or head hold.
  199         10. Any technique that involves pushing anything on or into
  200  the mouth, nose, eyes, or any part of the face or that involves
  201  covering the face or body with anything, including soft objects
  202  such as pillows or washcloths.
  203         11. Any maneuver that involves punching, hitting, poking,
  204  pinching, or shoving.
  205         12. Any type of mat or blanket restraint.
  206         13. Water or lemon sprays.
  207         (e) The school shall ensure that a student is medically
  208  evaluated by a physician, nurse, or other qualified medical
  209  professional as soon as possible after the student has been
  210  manually physically restrained by school personnel.
  211         (4) SECLUSION; TIME-OUT.—
  212         (a) School personnel may not place a student in seclusion.
  213         (b) School personnel may place a student in time-out if all
  214  of the following conditions are met:
  215         1. The time-out is part of a positive behavioral
  216  intervention plan developed for the student from a functional
  217  behavioral assessment and referenced in the student’s individual
  218  education plan.
  219         2. There is documentation that the time-out was preceded by
  220  the use of other positive behavioral supports that were not
  221  effective.
  222         3. The time-out takes place in a classroom or in another
  223  environment where class educational activities are taking place.
  224         4. The student is not physically prevented from leaving the
  225  time-out area.
  226         5. The student is observed on a constant basis by an adult
  227  for the duration of the time-out.
  228         6. The time-out area and process are free of any action
  229  that is likely to embarrass or humiliate the student.
  230         (c) Time-out may not be used for a period that exceeds 1
  231  minute for each year of a student’s age and must end immediately
  232  when the student is calm enough to return to his or her seat.
  233         (d) Time-out may not be used as a punishment or negative
  234  consequence of a student’s behavior.
  236         (a) Each school district shall report its procedures for
  237  training and certification in the use of manual physical
  238  restraint to the department by publishing the procedures in the
  239  district’s special policies and procedures manual.
  240         (b) Training for initial certification in the use of manual
  241  physical restraint must include all of the following:
  242         1. Procedures for deescalating a problem behavior before
  243  the problem increases to a level or intensity necessitating
  244  physical intervention.
  245         2. Information regarding the risks associated with manual
  246  physical restraint and procedures for assessing individual
  247  situations and students in order to determine whether the use of
  248  manual physical restraint is appropriate and sufficiently safe.
  249         3. The actual use of specific techniques that range from
  250  the least to most restrictive, with ample opportunity for
  251  trainees to demonstrate proficiency in the use of such
  252  techniques.
  253         4. Techniques for implementing manual physical restraint
  254  with multiple staff members working as a team.
  255         5. Techniques for assisting a student in reentering the
  256  instructional environment and reengaging in learning.
  257         6. Instruction in the district’s documentation and
  258  reporting requirements.
  259         7. Procedures to identify and deal with possible medical
  260  emergencies arising during the use of manual physical restraint.
  261         8. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
  262         (c) Each school district shall provide refresher
  263  certification training courses in manual physical restraint
  264  techniques at least annually to all staff members who have
  265  successfully completed the initial certification program. The
  266  district must identify those persons to be certified and
  267  maintain a record that includes the name and position of the
  268  person certified, the date of the person’s most recent
  269  certification and whether it is an initial or refresher
  270  certification, and whether the individual successfully completed
  271  the certification and achieved proficiency.
  272         (d) School district policies regarding the use of manual
  273  physical restraint must address whether it is appropriate for an
  274  employee working in a specific setting, such as a school bus
  275  driver, school bus aide, job coach, employment specialist, or
  276  cafeteria worker, to be certified in manual physical restraint
  277  techniques. In the case of school resource officers or others
  278  who may be employed by other agencies when working in a school,
  279  administrators shall review each agency’s specific policies to
  280  be aware of techniques that may be used.
  281         (6) STUDENT-CENTERED FOLLOWUP.—If a student is manually
  282  physically restrained more than twice during a school year, the
  283  school shall review the student’s functional behavioral
  284  assessment and positive behavioral intervention plan.
  285         (7)(1) DOCUMENTATION AND REPORTING.—
  286         (a) At the beginning of each school year, a school district
  287  shall provide a copy of its policies on emergency procedures,
  288  including its policies on the use of manual physical restraint,
  289  to each student’s parent or guardian. The student’s parent or
  290  guardian must sign a form indicating that he or she has received
  291  and read the district’s policies, which the student’s school
  292  shall retain on file.
  293         (b)(a) A school shall prepare an incident report within 24
  294  hours after a student is released from restraint or seclusion.
  295  If the student’s release occurs on a day before the school
  296  closes for the weekend, a holiday, or another reason, the
  297  incident report must be completed by the end of the school day
  298  on the day the school reopens.
  299         (c)(b)All of the following must be included in the
  300  incident report:
  301         1. The name of the student restrained or secluded.
  302         2. The age, grade, ethnicity, and disability of the student
  303  restrained or secluded.
  304         3. The date and time of the event and the duration of the
  305  restraint or seclusion.
  306         4. The location at which the restraint or seclusion
  307  occurred.
  308         5. A description of the type of restraint used in terms
  309  established by the department of Education.
  310         6. The name of the person using or assisting in the
  311  restraint or seclusion of the student.
  312         7. The name of any nonstudent who was present to witness
  313  the restraint or seclusion.
  314         8. A description of the incident, including all of the
  315  following:
  316         a. The context in which the restraint or seclusion
  317  occurred.
  318         b. The student’s behavior leading up to and precipitating
  319  the decision to use manual or physical restraint or seclusion,
  320  including an indication as to why there was an imminent risk of
  321  serious injury or death to the student or others.
  322         c. The specific positive behavioral strategies used to
  323  prevent and deescalate the behavior.
  324         d. What occurred with the student immediately after the
  325  termination of the restraint or seclusion.
  326         e. Any injuries, visible marks, or possible medical
  327  emergencies that may have occurred during the restraint or
  328  seclusion, documented according to district policies.
  329         f. The results of the medical evaluation and a copy of any
  330  report by the medical professionals conducting the evaluation,
  331  if available. If the medical report is not available within 24
  332  hours, the district must submit the medical report separately as
  333  soon as it becomes available.
  334         g.f. Evidence of steps taken to notify the student’s parent
  335  or guardian.
  336         (d)(c) A school shall notify the parent or guardian of a
  337  student each time manual or physical restraint or seclusion is
  338  used. Such notification must be in writing and provided before
  339  the end of the school day on which the restraint or seclusion
  340  occurs. Reasonable efforts must also be taken to notify the
  341  parent or guardian by telephone or computer e-mail, or both, and
  342  these efforts must be documented. The school shall obtain, and
  343  keep in its records, the parent’s or guardian’s signed
  344  acknowledgment that he or she was notified of his or her child’s
  345  restraint or seclusion.
  346         (e)(d) A school shall also provide the parent or guardian
  347  with the completed incident report in writing by mail within 3
  348  school days after a student was manually or physically
  349  restrained or secluded. The school shall obtain, and keep in its
  350  records, the parent’s or guardian’s signed acknowledgment that
  351  he or she received a copy of the incident report.
  352         (8)(2) MONITORING.—
  353         (a) Monitoring of The use of manual or physical restraint
  354  or seclusion on students shall be monitored occur at the
  355  classroom, building, district, and state levels.
  356         (b) Any documentation prepared by a school pursuant to as
  357  required in subsection (7) (1) shall be provided to the school
  358  principal, the district director of Exceptional Student
  359  Education, and the bureau chief of the Bureau of Exceptional
  360  Education and Student Services electronically each week month
  361  that the school is in session.
  362         (c) Each week that a school is in session, the school shall
  363  send a redacted copy of any incident report and other
  364  documentation prepared pursuant to subsection (7) to Disability
  365  Rights Florida.
  366         (d)(c) The department shall maintain aggregate data of
  367  incidents of manual or physical restraint and seclusion and
  368  disaggregate the data for analysis by county, school, student
  369  exceptionality, and other variables, including the type and
  370  method of restraint or seclusion used. This information shall be
  371  updated monthly and made available to the public through the
  372  department’s website beginning no later than January 31, 2018.
  373         (e)(d) The department shall establish standards for
  374  documenting, reporting, and monitoring the use of manual or
  375  physical restraint or mechanical restraint, and occurrences of
  376  seclusion. These standards shall be provided to school districts
  377  by October 1, 2011.
  379         (a) Each school district shall develop policies and
  380  procedures that are consistent with this section and that govern
  381  all of the following:
  382         1. Authorized use of manual physical restraint on students.
  383         2. Personnel authorized to use manual physical restraint.
  384         3. Training procedures.
  385         4.1. Incident-reporting procedures.
  386         5.2. Data collection and monitoring, including when, where,
  387  and why students are restrained and or secluded; the frequency
  388  of occurrences of such restraint or seclusion; and the prone or
  389  mechanical restraint that is most used.
  390         6.3. Monitoring and reporting of data collected.
  391         7.4. Training programs relating to manual or physical
  392  restraint and seclusion.
  393         8.5. The district’s plan for selecting personnel to be
  394  trained.
  395         9.6. The district’s plan for reducing the use of restraint,
  396  and seclusion particularly in settings in which it occurs
  397  frequently or with students who are restrained repeatedly, and
  398  for reducing the use of prone restraint and mechanical
  399  restraint. The plan must include a goal for reducing the use of
  400  restraint and seclusion and must include activities, skills, and
  401  resources needed to achieve that goal. Activities may include,
  402  but are not limited to, all of the following:
  403         a. Additional training in positive behavioral support and
  404  crisis management.;
  405         b. Parental involvement.;
  406         c. Data review.;
  407         d. Updates of students’ functional behavioral analysis and
  408  positive behavior intervention plans.;
  409         e. Additional student evaluations.;
  410         f. Debriefing with staff.;
  411         g. Use of schoolwide positive behavior support.; and
  412         h. Changes to the school environment.
  413         10. Analysis of data to determine trends.
  414         11. Ongoing reduction of the use of manual physical
  415  restraint.
  416         (b) Any revisions a school district makes to its to the
  417  district’s policies and procedures, which must be prepared as
  418  part of the school district’s its special policies and
  419  procedures, must be filed with the bureau chief of the Bureau of
  420  Exceptional Education and Student Services no later than January
  421  31, 2012.
  422         (4) PROHIBITED RESTRAINT.—School personnel may not use a
  423  mechanical restraint or a manual or physical restraint that
  424  restricts a student’s breathing.
  425         (5) SECLUSION.—School personnel may not close, lock, or
  426  physically block a student in a room that is unlit and does not
  427  meet the rules of the State Fire Marshal for seclusion time-out
  428  rooms.
  429         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2017.