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Resource ID: #25979
Source:ABC News Nightline
Thousands of American school children who suffer with autism or other behavioral problems have been injured and dozens have died at the hands of poorly trained teachers and staff who tried to subdue them using unsafe and at times unduly harsh techniques, an ABC News Brian Ross investigation has found. With no national standards for how a teacher can restrain an unruly child, the ABC News Nightline investigation found school officials around the country have been employing a wide array of methods ranging from sitting on children, handcuffing them, and locking them in padded, “seclusion rooms” for hours. One school even employed a device that delivered an electric shock. Dramatic, rare video, moving interviews with students as young as ten years old , exclusive interviews with parents whose children died during the use of restraints, confrontational interviews with school administrators plus original research by Producers Angela Hill and Matthew Mosk resulted in a stark and disturbing comprehensive investigation that aired on every ABC News platform nationwide: ABC News Nightline, World News with Diane Sawyer, ABC Radio and affiliate stations broadcast stories, as well as numerous print and video stories which were published on ABC News.com. The major investigative effort not only exposed the problem but explored the solution in a profile of the Centennial School in Pennsylvania, where special needs students are never physically restrained. The report was welcomed by parent groups, advocates for the disabled, and legislators for bringing national attention to a largely hidden and growing problem.