Public schools in Michigan have to do their best to accommodate children with special needs. Children can receive appropriate support based on their needs, which the school district can evaluate on a case-by-case basis.
In addition to supporting children who are capable of participating in mainstream classes, the Kent Intermediate School District also provides specialized facilities for children of different ages with special needs. Securing proper accommodations often requires medical records and making official requests through the school system.
Having an IEP won’t always protect a child
Children with special needs need proper support to thrive in an academic environment. Parents often have to put a lot of work into developing an individualized educational program (IEP) for their child and then enforcing that plan as they navigate the public school system.
The plan aims to minimize behavioral issues while encouraging optimal academic performance. It will outline what resources the school will provide. Despite special de-escalation rules in your IEP and limits on what teachers and other professionals can do to a student, your child could end up hurt while at school because of the actions taken by employees.
Restraints and safety rooms can often cause harm
Typically, an IEP has to specifically provide for physical restraints for a school to have the right to hold a child down or use devices to limit their range of motion. Many schools get around the risks involved in not restraining a volatile student by adding safe rooms to their facilities.
They may close a child in the safe room during an outburst, but the child could still end up hurt while in the safe room. Left unattended, a child in emotional distress could give themselves a concussion or otherwise severely injure themselves. When fighting back against restraints, any number of traumatic injuries could be possible.
Schools are accountable when students get hurt
If staff members deviated from the appropriate processes in your student’s IEP or if they violated state laws regarding the use of restraints, you have have to take action when your child comes home hurt. Failing to accommodate a child with special needs is a serious concern, as is using inappropriate physical force against that child.
Pursuing an injury claim against the school can compensate your family for the injury your child suffered and hopefully prompt a change to their practices in the future to prevent similar injuries of from occurring to other students.