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Journal Article


French DD, Wojcicki CA. Sch. Ment. Health 2018; 10(1): 35-47.


(Copyright © 2018, Holtzbrinck Springer Nature Publishing Group)






The use of restraint and seclusion in schools and mental health settings has been steeped in controversy. Advocates cite the necessity and efficacy of these procedures as interventions for dangerous behaviors, while opponents question their effectiveness and focus on their potential for misuse. Amidst the controversy, however, there is consensus for efforts to reduce the use of these procedures to the extent possible, though some authors assert that specialized settings serving severe populations may necessitate the use of these procedures at higher rates. This descriptive study examined 5 years of archival data pertaining to the use of restraint and seclusion in a special education school for students with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) in order to contribute to the development of benchmarks from which reduction efforts can be measured. The frequency, duration, and rate of injury associated with restraint and seclusion procedures were tabulated and summarized.

RESULTS indicated that frequencies of restraint and seclusion were considerably higher for younger students, and the data were skewed toward a relatively small number of students. Also, durations and student injury were quite low. These findings are noteworthy with regard to their implications for the interpretation of previous research and current practice. Directions for future research are also discussed.

Language: en


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