Fairfax County Public Schools Statement on Seclusion and Restraint

News Release
March 15, 2019

Special education advocates, concerned parents, and community members have raised concerns in light of recent media reports regarding FCPS’s seclusion and restraint procedures and documentation requirements.  The Fairfax County School Board and Superintendent Scott S. Brabrand take these concerns seriously and, in response, have commenced a complete and thorough evaluation and review of the following areas:

•             Restraint and seclusion guidelines and practices.
•             Parental notification.
•             Data collection requirements and procedures.
•             Data reporting requirements and procedures.
•             Staff training.

“The Fairfax County School Board is committed to ensuring that FCPS provides a caring and inclusive culture that meets the needs of all of our students,” said School Board Chair Karen Corbett Sanders.  “We understand the community’s concerns and welcome the superintendent’s review of the district’s seclusion and restraint procedures.  Based on the superintendent’s findings, the Board will determine next steps regarding the district’s seclusion and restraint practices.”

“School Board Chair Corbett Sanders and I share the concerns of those who are raising questions about our seclusion and restraint procedures,” said Superintendent Brabrand.  “We know that parents trust schools to provide an environment in which students can learn and grow led by kind and caring professionals.  While our schools offer such an environment for students of all capabilities, we want to ensure that all school-based personnel trained in the use of seclusion/restraint understand the appropriate use of the procedures to manage extremely challenging student behaviors in emergency situations along with the documentation requirements.  Under our current guidelines, the practice is prohibited unless there is a dangerous situation and seclusion/restraint is necessary to protect the student or another person or persons.”