DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The Iowa State Board of Education has adopted new rules that limit districts on how and when seclusion rooms are used to discipline students.
The Des Moines Register reports that the board voted unanimously Wednesday to limit educators to using seclusion and restraint of students as a last resort and only when there’s a threat of bodily injury.
The new rules also require schools to notify parents of the use of seclusion and restraint as soon as possible and to use rooms at least 7×8 feet.
Schools have five years to implement the new size requirements.
The change comes after years of criticism and pushback on use of the rooms. In 2017, the Iowa Department of Education determined that the Iowa City Community School District improperly used the rooms for minor infractions.
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