Legislators to reconsider rules for restraining students in schools

Posted Nov. 21, 2010, at 6:08 p.m.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Last year, a bill to prohibit face-down physical restraints in Maine schools failed to win support in the Legislature’s education committee.

Now, the Maine Department of Education is preparing to come back to lawmakers with a bill to better define, document and control the use of physical restraints and seclusion in schools.

MaineToday Media reports that the department has met with about 25 educators, children’s advocates and others who offered suggestions on how to change rules that many say are unclear, lack necessary oversight and are potentially harmful to kids.

Jill Adams of the Maine Administrators of Services for Children with Disabilities says the rules are now over 10 years old and need to be updated with the times. Congress is also considering legislation regulating restraints and seclusion.