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Friday, May 13, 2011

TASH: PARENT’S GUIDE ASKS ‘SHOULDN’T SCHOOL BE SAFE?’

Reposted with Permission.

Media Contact:
Jonathan Riethmaier
Advocacy Communications Manager
(202) 540-8014




For Immediate Release
PARENT’S GUIDE ASKS ‘SHOULDN’T SCHOOL BE SAFE?’
TASH releases resource to inform parents and protect against
restraint and seclusion abuses in schools
WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 12, 2011) – TASH, a nonprofit advocate for inclusion and human rights of persons with significant disabilities, has released Shouldn’t School Be Safe?, a parent’s guide to keeping children safe from restraint, seclusion and other aversive practices in schools.
The process of finding help when a child is abused is not always clear, and many parents are discouraged or overwhelmed by the patchwork of laws and regulations handling restraint and seclusion in schools. Shouldn’t School Be Safe? is a free resource developed by parents for parents that offers insight and advice to respond to and prevent restraint and seclusion.
“Many parents feel lost or disconnected in the planning process for their child, and have only a limited idea of their rights to direct that process,” said Barb Trader, executive director of TASH. “Parents seeking answers and support should be empowered to make informed decisions that protect their child.”
Shouldn’t School Be Safe? offers preventative steps parents can take to limit risk at school. The guide encourages parents to play an active role in decision-making, including the creation of an Individualized Education Plan and behavior plan. It also covers ways to build positive relationships and set the foundation for success within the school and community for their child.
The signs of abuse can sometimes be difficult to detect. This guide provides tips for staying vigilant about the health and safety of students. It covers the warning signs, physical and behavioral, that can indicate abuse. It also outlines indicators that a school may provide a dangerous environment for students.
Shouldn’t School Be Safe? also includes information and step-by-step actions for parents to take if they discover their child has been restrained or secluded in school. These practices can be traumatic for children and their parents. This guide outlines the immediate steps to be taken, and how to respond in the days and weeks following an incident of restraint, seclusion or other aversive practice.
This is a free resource for parents and includes sample forms for incident debriefing and communicating with school officials. Shouldn’t School Be Safe? may also be used by anyone involved in the care and decision-making of school children.
TASH, along with the Alliance to Prevent Restraint, Aversive Interventions and Seclusion (a TASH-led coalition of disability organizations), is a leading proponent of federal legislation to protect students from restraint and seclusion in schools. TASH’s 2011 report, The Cost of Waiting, documents restraint and seclusion through the lens of the media, and is a free resource available for download. More information can be found at www.tash.org.
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About TASH
A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, TASH is an international grassroots leader in advancing inclusive communities through research, education and advocacy. Founded in 1975, we are a volunteer-driven organization that advocates for human rights and inclusion for people with the most significant disabilities and support needs – those most vulnerable to segregation, abuse, neglect and institutionalization. The inclusive practices we validate through research have been shown to improve outcomes for all people. More information about TASH can be found at www.tash.org.  

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