Room for Improvement in School Districts' Policies?

By Becker, Stacey | Telegraph - Herald (Dubuque), February 22, 2014 | Go to article overview

Room for Improvement in School Districts' Policies?


Becker, Stacey, Telegraph - Herald (Dubuque)


seclusion rooms Usage of seclusion rooms -- a room a student is placed in to calm down -- varies in tri-state area school districts. Here is a sampling: Iowa Dubuque: 19 rooms Bellevue: Two rooms Western Dubuque: Three rooms Illinois East Dubuque: Zero designated rooms, but space is available if needed Galena: Zero rooms Wisconsin Platteville: Two rooms. A staff member is typically in the room. Prairie du Chien: Zero designated rooms, but space is available if needed NOTE: Some districts use the term seclusion when identifying a room where a student is placed and observed.Jennifer Burds' heart broke when she looked inside the school's empty room that her son had been placed in time and again.

She explained that her son, Alex, was frequently placed in the timeout/seclusion room at Peosta Elementary School in the Western Dubuque County Community School District.

"It was heartbreaking because he was such a small child," Burds said. She added that Alex has Asperger syndrome, a disorder characterized by significant difficulty with social interaction.

The incidents took place when Alex was a kindergartner through second-grader. Western Dubuque uses the empty rooms that have a door with a window when students pose a danger to themselves or others in an attempt to have them calm down.

A bill to be introduced by U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, in the coming weeks would prohibit the use of seclusion in a locked, unattended room or enclosure.

"In Iowa and around the country, we must stop the use of seclusion and severely limit the use of restraints in schools. The Keeping All Students Safe Act will prohibit the use of seclusion and almost all uses of restraints except for emergencies, while ensuring that school personnel have the knowledge and resources available to prevent challenging behaviors and to respond, in a positive, supportive and safe manner when they do occur," Harkin stated in an email to TH Media.

Dubuque Community School District Superintendent Stan Rheingans said the goal is admirable, but he cautioned against sudden elimination of the rooms.

"You would be hard pressed to find an educator who likes the idea of secluding students for any reason," he said. "Certainly the goal is admirable and we want to work along that path because we share that goal. We look forward to the day when they are no longer needed, but we want to make sure we get there in the right way."

The legal definition of seclusion is a behavior control technique involving locked isolation. Although Western Dubuque and Dubuque don't lock students inside the rooms and a staff member is required to observe and document the student's actions, the schools still use the word seclusion and timeout interchangeably to describe the rooms.

Burds, who said it's essential the bill is passed, would like it to include instances in which children are placed in rooms by themselves but also observed by staff.

Dubuque Community School Board Member Matt Strelo has been working at the board committee level to lessen and eventually eliminate the usage of seclusion rooms.

"Through my own personal experience with my family, I've seen the negative things that can occur," he said.

Strelo declined to share the details of what happened two years ago. However, he said he sympathizes with teachers, students and staff who must overcome the sometimes-challenging problem of working with students who might have neurological disorders and exhibit extreme behavior. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Room for Improvement in School Districts' Policies?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.