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Boy restrained at school dies


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Joined: Nov 03, 2005
Posts: 69138
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Posted Mar 08, 2002 at 2:27:03 PM
Subject: Boy restrained at school dies

http://www.austin360.com/statesman/editions/today/metro_stat
e_7.html

Friday, March 8, 2002

* CENTRAL TEXAS

Boy restrained at school dies

KILLEEN -- A 14-year-old boy died Thursday after being
restrained in a school behavioral management class, police
said. Officials were withholding the boy's name and details
of the death. Killeen police and the Killeen school
district are investigating the incident, which was reported
about 3 p.m. in a Manor Middle School classroom.

"At this point in the investigation it appears the child
was having a problem in his behavioral management class and was being restrained when at some point he became
unresponsive," police said in a prepared statement.

Paramedics performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation but were unable to revive the boy. He was pronounced dead at 4:22 at a local hospital. An autopsy was ordered.

http://users.1st.net/cibra/

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Anonymous
Joined Dec 20, 2014
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Posted:Mar 08, 2002 8:20:44 PM

*

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Anonymous
Joined Dec 20, 2014
Posts: 69138

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Posted:Mar 08, 2002 10:52:16 PM

As a former teacher in a BD class I've had the unfortunate fate in having to restrain hundreds of very angry children in my life. I've never killed or injured one. Yet, in our world of no care - undertrained "teachers" are put in with large groups of ultra-violent children who are and have been a danger to themselves and others. In many cases we merely play like we're educating them.

Advocates abound - yet we've only moved backwards. Mental health care for adolescents in this country is ABYSMAL. I've spent a career trying to do my small bit to help.

In this career, I've been hospitalized three times - had my knee destroyed in 1981(lateral and medial miniscus removed) - completely blind-sided and kicked by a withdrawn, suicidic sexually-abused sixth grader - had a serious bite from a male prostitute run away (had to be AIDS tested for a year - the boy and his family refused testing) - was hit in the groin - resulting in a dislocated pelvis - and on and on and on.

These children did not particularly hate me - they were angry at any and everything. You may think I was crazy to keep returning - but working with these kids was my calling for twenty years. I not only grieve for a child dying in what was most likely an improper restraining technique - I grieve for the restrainer - who most likely - was doing the best he/she could in an impossible situation.

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Anonymous
Joined Dec 20, 2014
Posts: 69138

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Posted:Mar 09, 2002 6:37:13 PM

Profound autism, severe behavioral problems, juvenile psychosis, drug abuse... all of these can cause children and teens to have violent episodes. I fully realize that this is a very delicate situation finding the balance between maintaining order and protecting all parties involved and not using restraint tactics which can lead to injury and even death.

The schools are not held to the same level of standards in either application of restraint or in reporting of bad incidents that group homes/institutions or nursing homes have. If you search up the various state laws concerning restraint you will se they specifically name the applicable parties they apply to, and the schools are not mentioned.

It is true that the residential/mental health institutions are more likely to have those children most likely to have restraint applied to them. But there are still literally thousands of special ed students who can have outbursts that would lead to restraint situations. It is important that school personnel be trained in safe and effective methods of restraint for those times when it becomes necessary, both for the protection of the people involved (or in the classroom) and to avoid the liability of having major injury/death occur as a result.

Many potentially violent and escalatable outbursts can be avoided completely if FBA's are used to identify the triggering stimuli, and reducing/eliminating these can be effected. For those times when restraint becomes avoidable, use of proper techniques is absolutely critical. The two most common reasons for death due to restraint occur when the adult/adults in question either pin the child face down on the floor and then sit on then or else the child is rolled up in something like a blanket or mattress. As the child begins to asphyxiate, they struggle harder and harder (which any of us would if placed in a similar situation) which most often causes ill-trained adults to hold them tighter still.

Also, there are rarely any true investigations into the occurrence, as most times the child has a history of "behavioral" offenses, and is readily blamed for the situation. Were teachers/behavioral specialists/security personnel better trained in understanding how to manage children with behavioral issues, many of these very tragic events would be avoided.

My point in this is not to sensationalize a bad happening, or to point fingers of blame at the schools in general. I wish to bring this out into the open however for us to look at and realize is occurring. It cannot be corrected unless we are willing to acknowledge it exists. I do think that otherwise good school personnel can get in over their heads in situations like this, and that by seeing the problem for what it is - a lack of comprehensive training by the colleges and by the districts - we can begin to take the steps necessary to reduce and possibly even eliminate future tragedies like this.

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