KY- Legislation Alert. Kentucky Department of Education Passed a Regulation On Use of Physical Restraint and Seclusion In Public Schools

Kentucky Department of Education passed regulation 704 KAR 7:160: Use of Physical Restraint and Seclusion in Public Schools.

This regulation requires all schools staff using restraint be trained in restraint.

History of 704 KAR 7:160

On December 17, 2012, the Kentucky Department of Education (“DOE”) passed a regulation governing the use of physical restraint and seclusion in public schools.  The requirements of the new regulation went into effect on February 1, 2013.

Prior to enactment, the regulation was subject to public comment. HWC was one of the entities that submitted comment on the proposed regulation.  Other commentators who opposed the initial regulation included the Kentucky School Board Association (KSBA) and attorneys representing 37 school districts in Kentucky (among others).

As we pointed out during the comment period, DOE’s initial regulation was in direct conflict with many laws including several Kentucky Statutes.

In the hierarchies among legal authorities, the Constitution supersedes Federal Legislation;  Federal legislation supersedes State Legislation, and case law and State statute supersede State regulations.

As a result of HWC’s (and other’s) efforts, DOE revised its restraint regulation and made it subject to (rather than in conflict with) Kentucky laws and statutes.  Specifically,

  • The regulation prevents the use of restraint and seclusion for property damage, except  as permitted under KRS Chapter 503;
  • Physical restraint can be used when the student’s behavior poses an imminent danger of physical harm to self or others, and as permitted under Kentucky Statutes: KRS 503.050, 503.070, and 503.110.

Handle With Care’s program fully complies with Kentucky DOE’s restraint and seclusion regulation. 

For more information about Kentucky’s new regulation or HWC’s training, please contact us.

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