Response to ‘Reducing Restrictive Intervention of Children and Young People’ report

The Reducing Restrictive Intervention of Children and Young People report has been launched.

This report shows that far too many vulnerable children are being physically and psychologically harmed in UK schools through the use of restraint. Restraint results from a failure to meet needs and is a failure of care. There is an urgent need to ensure staff are trained in the skills to meet needs and prevent crisis situations.

The Restraint Reduction Training Standards help ensure this is the case. Currently they are only mandatory in in health and adult social care in England. We must ensure the quality assurance of training is also mandatory in schools in order to ensure #NoHarm in our schools.

The Restraint Reduction Network plan to reduce restrictive practices in schools:

  • The Joint Committee on Human Rights is clear that “the use of restraint for maintaining ‘good order and discipline’ must be prohibited”.
  • There should be a statutory requirement on schools to record and report all restrictive practices (as in health and adult social care). The lack of such requirements leaves children at risk of abuse and impinges on human rights
  • Ofsted should be commissioned to carry out a thematic review of restrictive practices in residential special schools (building on the CQC thematic review of health and social care services)
  • Evidence-based preventative approaches such as Positive Behaviour Support Six Core Strategies and trauma informed practice should be rolled out to all special schools and alternative provision, so staff have alternatives to use
  • Schools should only use restraint training that has been certified as complying with the Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards (as is the case in health and social care)
  • New statutory guidance is developed to reduce reliance on restrictive practices in schools that reflects the principals of the Mental Health Use of Force Act
  • All special schools and alternative provision should be required to publish restrictive intervention reduction plans to reduce the incident of aggression and the use of restrictive interventions (in line with NICE guidelines)


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