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Schools should be places where children feel safe, even when they make a mistake or do something that they shouldn’t be doing. Just because they are children doesn’t mean they should be treated with any less respect. Sadly, this is not always the case.

Source: Alliance Against Seclusion and Restraint/YouTube

In some American schools, seclusion and restraint are used against students who are “acting out.”  These tactics involve physically restraining a student or secluding them in a separate space from everyone else. Not only can using these tactics cause physical harm to both the student and teacher, but it can also be quite psychologically traumatizing. They are only supposed to be used as a last resort in dangerous situations; however, some teachers have described how other teachers will use them often, without trying to de-escalate the situation first.

Sadly, seclusion and restraint are most often used on disabled students and students with special needs who need more Support, not physical punishment. They are also used on Black children at a disproportionate rate. While there are situations in which a student may become a danger to themself, it’s important to ensure that de-escalation tactics are used instead. De-escalation techniques are often more successful and cause less harm in both the short and long-term.

Fortunately, a new bill called the Keeping All Students Safe Act (KASSA) was introduced to end seclusion and restraint practices in any school that receives federal funding.

“The practice of subjecting students to abusive discipline techniques happens far too often, and disproportionately affects Black children and students with disabilities, explained Congressman Don Beyer.

Senator Chris Murphy emphasized, “The Keeping All Students Safe Act would establish strong federal standards to keep students safe, while providing school staff with alternatives to address disruptive behavior with evidence-based, trauma-informed, proactive strategies and the resources to put those alternatives into practice.”

Sign this petition to demand the United States Congress passes KASSA to end the seclusion and restraint for vulnerable children!

To continue speaking up, sign these other petitions as well:

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