Superintendent's Memo #294-09

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

October 16, 2009

TO: Division Superintendents

FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Revisions to the Guidelines for the Development of Policies and Procedures for Managing Student Behavior in Emergency Situations in Virginia Public Schools, Focusing on Physical Restraint and Seclusion-Revised September 2009

We are pleased to announce revisions to the following document, Guidelines for the Development of Policies and Procedures for Managing Student Behaviors in Emergency Situations, Focusing on Physical Restraint and Seclusion-Revised September 2009. The guidelines were first issued in 2005 under the leadership of the State Special Education Advisory Committee (SSEAC). At that time, public comment received by the committee, coupled with a survey conducted by the Virginia Department of Education, suggested a need for assistance in developing policies and procedures on the use of physical restraint and seclusion.

Local school boards are strongly encouraged to maintain a policy on the use of physical restraint and seclusion in managing student behavior in emergency situations. This document provides guidance that localities will find useful in developing or revising such a policy. This policy should then be reviewed with every administrator, teacher, and staff member to ensure the safety of all faculty and students in every school division. Each division should maintain documentation of training for all faculty and staff.

A copy of the document may be downloaded at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/support/student_conduct/guidelines_managing_behaviors_emergency.pdf. If you have questions, please contact Irene Walker-Bolton, educational specialist, Office of Special Education Instructional Services, at (804) 225-2066 or by e-mail at Irene.Walker-Bolton@doe.virginia.gov.

PIW/ IWB / dlj