Kane In Your Corner: New Jersey Senate passes student restraint bill

The New Jersey Senate has passed a student restraint bill, thanks in part to a Kane In Your Corner investigation.

The New Jersey Senate has passed a student restraint bill, thanks in part to a Kane In Your Corner investigation. (6/23/16)

TRENTON - A Kane In Your Corner investigation could be leading to a big change in New Jersey schools.

The state Senate voted Thursday to unanimously pass a bill that would regulate how students with disabilities can be physically restrained. 

Kane In Your Corner investigated the practice of restraining kids with special needs two years ago. Some parents’ kids were restrained dozens of times and their schools never told them about it.

The investigation prompted New Jersey Sen. Kevin O’Toole to take action.

The proposed law would require parents be notified immediately if their child is restrained. A full written report would also have to be provided within 48 hours.

Prone restraint, where a student is held face down, would be banned unless the student’s doctor says it’s OK. Some students have suffocated when restrained that way.

Finally, students with disabilities could only be secluded from other students in an emergency, or with written consent from the student’s doctor.

This is the second time the state Senate has passed the measure. It also passed earlier this year, but the session ended before the Assembly could consider it.

The bill now goes to the New Jersey Assembly.

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