HOW POUDRE SCHOOL DISTRICT HANDLES PHYSICAL INTERVENTION, RESTRAINT, SECLUSION AND TIME-OUT WITH RESPECT TO DISTRICT STUDENTS
District Policy JKA governs the manner in which physical intervention, restraint, seclusion and time-out are handled with respect to PSD students. Policy JKA has been drafted in accordance with Colorado’s Protection of Persons from Restraint Act, specifically including C.R.S. § 26-20-111 (Use of restraints in public schools - certain restraints prohibited). As provided by rule of the State Board of Education at 1 C.C.R. 301-45, § 2620-R-2.07, the process for filing a complaint regarding the use of restraint or seclusion with respect to a District student is set forth below.
Process for Filing a Complaint Regarding the Use of Restraint or Seclusion
2.07(1) A student or a parent or legal guardian may file a complaint about the use of restraint or seclusion used by an employee or volunteer of a school or charter school of school district or Board of Cooperative Services or any institute charter school by using the procedures established under this section 2.07.
2.07(2) Required Content of the Complaint: The Complaint must contain the following information:
2.07(2)(a) A statement that the employee or volunteer has violated a requirement regarding the use of restraints and an identification of the portion of the statute, rule, or regulation alleged to have been violated, if known by the complainant;
2.07(2)(b) The background information and facts on which the Complaint is based that identify persons, actions and/or omissions;
2.07(2)(c) The name and the residential address of the child against whom the alleged violation occurred;
2.07(2)(d) The name of the school that the child was attending when the alleged violation occurred;
2.07(2)(e) A proposed resolution of the problem to the extent known and available to the complainant at the time the Complaint is filed;
2.07(2)(f) The Complaint must allege that the violation(s) set forth in the Complaint occurred not more than one (1) year prior to the date that the Complaint is filed with the CDE;
2.07(2)(g) The signature and contact information (minimally, address and telephone number) for the complainant; and
2.07(2)(h) Written verification in a cover letter accompanying the Complaint that a complete copy of the Complaint and any attachments have also been mailed, hand-delivered, or delivered by other secure method to the public education agency (i.e. a school district, BOCES, or the Charter School Institute) serving the child.
2.07(3) The Complaint, including any attachments, must be mailed, hand-delivered, or delivered by other secure method to the IDEA State Complaints:
IDEA Part B State Complaints Officer
Colorado Department of Education
Exceptional Student Leadership Unit, Dispute Resolution Office
1560 Broadway, Suite 1175
Denver, Colorado 80202
Additionally, as noted in paragraph 2.07(2)(h) above, a complete copy of the Complaint, including any attachments, must also be mailed, hand-delivered, or delivered by other secure method to the public education agency (i.e. a school district, BOCES or the Charter School Institute) serving the child.
2.07(4) Complaints involving children with disabilities
2.07(4)(a) If the State Complaints Officer determines that the Complaint alleges a violation of the IDEA or its implementing regulations in 34 CFR Part 300, then the Complaint shall be processed through CDE's IDEA dispute resolution process. In these cases, the State Complaints Officer shall also have the authority to investigate and process a Complaint alleging improper use of seclusion and restraints in accordance with the timelines and procedures outlined in these rules.
2.07(4)(b) If the State Complaints Officer determines that the Complaint does not meet the criteria under section 2.07(4)(a), he or she shall refer the Complaint to the Restraint Complaints Officer (RCO) within five (5) calendar days of receiving the Complaint and shall notify the complainant in writing of this referral.
2.07(4)(c) Nothing in this subsection shall require the complainant to submit an additional Complaint directly to the RCO.
2.07(5) The Complaint shall be considered properly filed with the Department when it is received in CDE's Dispute Resolution Office and satisfies paragraph 2.07(2) above. A Complaint, once filed, will not be accepted for investigation if the CDE does not have jurisdiction (i.e., authority) to investigate; or if the Complaint does not set forth sufficient grounds on which to grant relief.
2.07(6) Within ten calendar (10) days of receipt of the Complaint, the RCO shall decide to accept or reject the Complaint for investigation and notify the complainant in writing. If the Complaint was sent via mail, the RCO's decision shall be postmarked by the 10th day. If the Complaint is accepted, the RCO shall:
2.07(6)(a) Notify the complainant of receipt and acceptance of the Complaint;
2.07(6)(b) Notify, by certified or overnight mail, the public education agency of each and every allegation contained in the Complaint together with a complete copy of the Complaint; and
2.07(6)(c) Initiate an investigation concerning the allegations contained in the Complaint.
2.07(7) Complaint Timelines:
2.07(7)(a) Response: Within fifteen (15) calendar days of receiving the RCO's notification of the Complaint, the public education agency may file a Response to the Complaint allegations and provide information which it deems necessary or useful for the RCO to consider in conducting a thorough investigation. If the public education agency fails to timely respond to an allegation, the RCO may, in his/her sole discretion, deem the allegation admitted.
The Response is due by 5:00 p.m. on the date due. The public education agency shall provide any written Response to the RCO and also a complete copy of the Response, including any attachments, to the complainant unless doing so would violate relevant laws regarding confidentiality. The public education agency shall provide the RCO with a legible copy of the written tracking receipt which verifies that a complete copy of the Response, including any attachments, was sent by certified or overnight mail to the complainant.
2.07(7)(b) Reply: Within ten (10) calendar days of delivery of the response, the complainant may file a written Reply to the Response, including any attachments, in support of his/her position. The complainant shall provide any written Reply to the RCO at the address identified in paragraph 2.07(3), above, and also provide the RCO by 5:00 p.m. on the date due with written verification that a complete copy of the Reply, including any attachments, was also mailed or hand-delivered to the public education agency.
The Response and Reply must be delivered by 5:00 p.m. on the date due to the office of the RCO and not merely postmarked by the due date. If the Response or Reply is untimely, the RCO may, within his or her sole discretion, refuse to consider the late document.
2.07(7)(c) Timeline Extensions: If the RCO finds that exceptional circumstances exist with respect to a particular Complaint, the RCO may, in his or her sole discretion, extend for a reasonable period of time, any of the timelines set forth in these Complaint procedures. Any request and extension of a timeline must occur prior to expiration of the timeline and shall be documented in a written order issued by the RCO prior to the expiration of the timeline and mailed to the parties. The RCO does not have authority to extend the regulatory statute of limitations of one (1) year described in Section 2.07(2)(f) above.
2.07(7)(d) If one or more due dates in the process fall on a weekend or a state holiday, the due date shall be the next calendar day following a weekend or state holiday if the due date is on a weekend or state holiday.
2.07(8) Complaint Investigations:
2.07(8)(a) The Complaint investigation may include, but is not limited to: an onsite investigation; request(s) that the complainant or public education agency provide additional information; and request(s) to review records in the possession of either party.
2.07(8)(b) Any time after a Complaint is filed and before the Complaint is resolved, the RCO may recommend a public education agency to undertake immediate action in an extraordinary situation when it is imperative to do so in order to protect the rights, health or safety of any student.
2.07(8)(c) The CDE, through the RCO, shall have sixty (60) calendar days from the date of receipt of the properly filed Complaint, to resolve the Complaint. The parties may mutually agree to extend the sixty (60) calendar day time limit in order to engage in voluntary mediation. Any extension of the Decision due date will be set by the RCO to a date certain as per section 2.07(7)(c), above.
2.07(9) Complaint Resolution:
2.07(9)(a) The RCO shall issue a written decision which details the findings of fact and conclusions of law unless the issues have been previously resolved. Based upon a finding that a public education agency has failed substantially to comply with state laws and regulations for the use of restraint, the RCO will, as part of the resolution of the Complaint, make recommendations to the public education agency of remedial actions that may be taken in order to come into compliance with applicable law and regulations, (e.g., technical assistance and training activities).
2.07(9)(b) The RCO shall have no authority to require corrective action by the public education agency, including but not limited to compensatory education for the child who is the subject of the complaint, monetary reimbursement or attorney fees.
2.07(9)(c) The decision of the RCO shall be final.