UCONN UCEDD "Hands Off" Behavioral Interventions Legislative Forum

March 15, 2016

The Connecticut General Assembly Committee on Children and Education hosted a legislative forum entitled '"Hands Off" Behavioral Interventions' sponsored by the University of Connecticut Center for Excellence on Developmental Disabilities on January 27, 2016.  The forum focused on the prevention and de-escalation strategies for students with complex behavioral challenges by applying the principles of school wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports.  The forum's opening remarks were made by Senator Dante Bartolomeo, Co-Chair of the Commission on Children on the newly enacted 2015 Public Act 15-141 (SB 927) that made major revisions governing the use of restraint and seclusion in schools, such as banning the use of prone restraints and extending protections to all students, not just special education students.  Isabelina Rodriquez, Special Education Bureau Chief, CT Department of Education spoke of school wide initiatives addressing positive supports in Connecticut schools.

Keynote speaker, George Sugai, Neag School of Education and UConn UCEDD's  Director of Research, Nick Gelbar, described how prevention and de-escalation strategies, or positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS), can significantly reduce incidents of seclusion and restraint, while simultaneously improving classroom climate for all students. The forum was attended by over 100 self-advocates, legislators, educators, parents and state agency representatives. The CT Council on Developmental Disabilities and the CT Protection and Advocacy for People with Disabilities as part of the CT DD Network  sponsored and attended the program.

For more information on Public Act 15-141 (SB 927) https://bureaubulletin.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/new-legislation-for-public-act-15-1411.pdf.