Oregon - Restraint and Seclusion: Prohibitions or Restrictions

Area: 
Prohibitions Or Restrictions
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law requires districts to adopt policies limiting use of restraint and seclusion that include comprehensive student protections, including the provision of mandatory training for school personnel.

Oregon Revised Statutes 339.291 Use of physical restraint or seclusion.

(1)(a)  Physical restraint or seclusion may be used on a student in a public education program only if:

  • (A)  The student’s behavior imposes a reasonable threat of imminent, serious bodily injury to the student or others; and
  • (B)  Less restrictive interventions would not be effective.
    • (b)  Physical restraint or seclusion may not be used for discipline, punishment or convenience of personnel of the public education program.

(2)  If physical restraint or seclusion is used on a student, the physical restraint or seclusion must be:

  • (a)  Used only for as long as the student’s behavior poses a reasonable threat of imminent, serious bodily injury to the student or others;
  • (b)  Imposed by personnel of the public education program who are:
    • (A)  Trained to use physical restraint or seclusion through programs described in ORS 339.300; or
    • (B)  Otherwise available in the case of an emergency circumstance when personnel described in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph are not immediately available due to the unforeseeable nature of the emergency circumstance; and
  • (c)  Continuously monitored by personnel of the public education program for the duration of the physical restraint or seclusion.

(3)  In addition to the requirements described in subsection (2) of this section, if physical restraint or seclusion continues for more than 30 minutes:

  • (a)  The student must be provided with adequate access to the bathroom and water every 30 minutes;
  • (b)  Personnel of the public education program must immediately attempt to verbally or electronically notify a parent or guardian of the student; and
  • (c)  Every 15 minutes after the first 30 minutes of the physical restraint or seclusion, an administrator for the public education program must provide written authorization for the continuation of the physical restraint or seclusion, including providing documentation for the reason the physical restraint or seclusion must be continued.

Oregon Revised Statutes 339.294 Procedures following incident; notification; records.

(1)  Each entity that has jurisdiction over a public education program must establish procedures for the public education program to follow after an incident involving the use of physical restraint or seclusion.

(2)  Following an incident involving the use of physical restraint or seclusion, the following must be provided to a parent or guardian of the student:

  • (a)  Verbal or electronic notification of the incident by the end of the school day when the incident occurred.
  • (b)  Written documentation of the incident within 24 hours of the incident that provides:
    • (A)  A description of the physical restraint or seclusion, including:
      • (i)  The date of the physical restraint or seclusion;
      • (ii)  The times when the physical restraint or seclusion began and ended; and
      • (iii)  The location of the physical restraint or seclusion.
    • (B)  A description of the student’s activity that prompted the use of physical restraint or seclusion.
    • (C)  The efforts used to de-escalate the situation and the alternatives to physical restraint or seclusion that were attempted.
    • (D)  The names of the personnel of the public education program who administered the physical restraint or seclusion.
    • (E)  A description of the training status of the personnel of the public education program who administered the physical restraint or seclusion, including any information that may need to be provided to the parent or guardian under subsection (3) of this section.
  • (c)  Timely notification of a debriefing meeting to be held as provided by subsection (4) of this section and the parent’s or guardian’s right to attend the meeting.

(3)  If the personnel of the public education program who administered the physical restraint or seclusion had not received training as provided by ORS 339.300, the administrator of the public education program shall ensure that a parent or guardian of the student and the district superintendent receive written notification of:

  • (a)  The lack of training; and
  • (b)  The reason the physical restraint or seclusion was administered by a person without training.

(4)(a)  A debriefing meeting related to the use of physical restraint or seclusion must be held within two school days of the incident and must include all personnel of the public education program who were involved in the incident and any other appropriate personnel.

  • (b)  Written notes must be taken of the debriefing meeting, and a copy of the written notes must be provided to a parent or guardian of the student.

(5)  If a student is involved in five incidents in a school year involving physical restraint or seclusion, a team consisting of personnel of the public education program and a parent or guardian of the student must be formed for the purposes of reviewing and revising the student’s behavior plan and ensuring the provision of any necessary behavioral supports.

(6)  If serious bodily injury or death of a student occurs in relation to the use of physical restraint or seclusion, written notification of the incident must be provided within 24 hours of the incident to the Department of Human Services.

(7) If serious bodily injury or death of personnel of the public education program occurs in relation to the use of physical restraint or seclusion, written notification of the incident must be provided within 24 hours of the incident to the district superintendent and, if applicable, to the union representative for the affected party.

(8) Each public education program must maintain a record of each incident in which injuries or death occurs in relation to the use of physical restraint or seclusion.


Oregon Revised Statutes 339.285 Definitions for ORS 339.285 to 339.303

As used in ORS 339.285 to 339.303:
(1)(a)  “Physical restraint” means the restriction of a student’s movement by one or more persons holding the student or applying physical pressure upon the student.

  • (b)(A)  “Physical restraint” does not include the touching or holding of a student without the use of force for the purpose of directing the student or assisting the student in completing a task or activity.
    • (B)  “Physical restraint” does not include prone restraint as defined in ORS 339.288.

(2)  “Public education program” means a program that:

  • (a)  Is for students in early childhood education, elementary school or secondary school;
  • (b)  Is under the jurisdiction of a school district, an education service district or another educational institution or program; and
  • (c)  Receives, or serves students who receive, support in any form from any program supported, directly or indirectly, with funds appropriated to the Department of Education.

(3)(a)  “Seclusion” means the involuntary confinement of a student alone in a room from which the student is physically prevented from leaving.

  • (b)  “Seclusion” does not include the removal of a student for a short period of time to provide the student with an opportunity to regain self-control if the student is in a setting from which the student is not physically prevented from leaving.

(4)  “Serious bodily injury” means any significant impairment of the physical condition of a person, as determined by qualified medical personnel, whether self-inflicted or inflicted by someone else.


Oregon Revised Statutes 339.297 Annual report.

(1)  Each entity that has jurisdiction over a public education program must prepare and submit to the Superintendent of Public Instruction an annual report detailing the use of physical restraint and seclusion for the preceding school year, including, at a minimum:

  • (a)  The total number of incidents involving physical restraint.
  • (b)  The total number of incidents involving seclusion.
  • (c)  The total number of seclusions in a locked room.
  • (d)  The total number of rooms available for use by the public education program for seclusion of a student and a description of the dimensions and design of the rooms.
  • (e)  The total number of students placed in physical restraint.
  • (f)  The total number of students placed in seclusion.
  • (g)  The total number of incidents that resulted in injuries or death to students or personnel as a result of the use of physical restraint or seclusion.
  • (h)  The number of students who were placed in physical restraint or seclusion more than 10 times in the course of a school year and an explanation of what steps have been taken by the public education program to decrease the use of physical restraint and seclusion for each student.
  • (i)  The number of incidents in which the personnel of the public education program administering physical restraint or seclusion were not trained as provided by ORS 339.300.
  • (j)  The demographic characteristics of all students upon whom physical restraint or seclusion was imposed, including race, ethnicity, gender, disability status, migrant status, English proficiency and status as economically disadvantaged, unless the demographic information would reveal personally identifiable information about an individual student.

(2)(a)  Each entity that has jurisdiction over a public education program shall make its annual report about physical restraint and seclusion available to:

  • (A)  The public at the entity’s main office and the website of the entity;
  • (B)  The board or governing body overseeing the entity;
  • (C)  If the entity is an education service district, the component school districts of the education service district; and
  • (D)  If the entity is a public charter school, the sponsor of the public charter school.
    • (b)  Parents and guardians of students in a public education program shall be advised at least once each school year about how to access the report.

Oregon Revised Statutes 339.308 Seclusion cell prohibition.

(1)  As used in this section:

  • (a)  “Public education program” means a program that:
    • (A)  Is for students in early childhood education, elementary school or secondary school;
    • (B)  Is under the jurisdiction of a school district, an education service district or another educational institution or program; and
    • (C)  Receives, or serves students who receive, support in any form from any program supported, directly or indirectly, with funds appropriated to the Department of Education.
  • (b)  “Seclusion cell” means a freestanding, self-contained unit that is used to:
    • (A)  Isolate a student from other students; or
    • (B)  Physically prevent a student from leaving the unit or cause the student to believe that the student is physically prevented from leaving the unit.

(2)  A public education program may not:

  • (a)  Purchase, build or otherwise take possession of a seclusion cell; or
  • (b)  Use a seclusion cell.

(3)  Nothing in this section prevents a public education program from using seclusion as allowed under sections 1 to 6, chapter 665, Oregon Laws 2011.


Oregon Revised Statutes 339.303 Rules for complaints, investigations and seclusion rooms.

The State Board of Education shall adopt by rule:
(1)  A process for an organization or an individual to submit to the Superintendent of Public Instruction a written, signed complaint alleging that a public education program is violating or has violated a provision of ORS 339.285 to 339.303. The complaint must indicate that, prior to submitting the complaint to the superintendent, the organization or individual attempted to seek a remedy for the complaint from the board or governing body overseeing the entity that has jurisdiction over the public education program against which the complaint is being submitted.
(2)  A process for investigating a complaint submitted under subsection (1) of this section.
(3)  The minimum standards for any rooms used by a public education program for seclusion of a student. The standards must:

  • (a)  Take into account the health and safety of students and personnel of the public education program and the respect and dignity of students; and
  • (b)  Include consideration of the size, safety features, lighting and ventilation of the rooms.

Oregon Revised Statutes 339.300 Training programs.

The Department of Education shall approve training programs in physical restraint and seclusion that:
(1)  Teach evidence-based techniques that are shown to be effective in the prevention and safe use of physical restraint or seclusion;
(2)  Provide evidence-based skills training related to positive behavior support, conflict prevention, de-escalation and crisis response techniques; and
(3)  Are consistent with the philosophies, practices and techniques for physical restraint and seclusion that are established by rule or policy of the Department of Human Services.


Oregon Revised Statutes 339.288 Prohibitions on use of certain restraints; limitations on use of physical restraint and seculsion

(1)  The use of a mechanical restraint, chemical restraint or prone restraint on a student in a public education program in this state is prohibited.
(2)  The use of physical restraint or seclusion on a student in a public education program in this state is prohibited unless used as provided in ORS 339.291.

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