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Adoption Date: 06/22/2021

Revision History: 3/22/22 9reviewed), 2/14/23 (reviewed), 2/13/24 (reviewed)

  • Using reasonable and necessary force, not designed or intended to cause pain, in order to accomplish any of the following:
    • To quell a disturbance or prevent an act that threatens physical harm to any person.
    • To obtain possession of a weapon or other dangerous object(s) within a student's control.
    • For the purposes of self-defense or defense of others as provided for in Iowa Code section 704.3.
    • For the protection of property as provided for in IOWA CODE section 704.4 or 704.5.
    • To remove a disruptive student from class or any area of school premises or from school-sponsored activities off school premises.
    • To protect a student from the self-infliction of harm.
    • To protect the safety of others.
  • Using incidental, minor, or reasonable physical contact to maintain order and control.

Mechanical restraint means the use of a device as a means of restricting a student’s freedom of movement. Mechanical restraint does not mean a device used by a trained individual for specific approved therapeutic or safety purposes for which the device was designed and, if applicable, prescribed, including restraints for medical immobilization, adaptive devices or mechanical supports used to allow greater freedom of mobility than would be possible without use of such devices or mechanical supports; and vehicle safety restraints when used as intended during the transport of a student in a moving vehicle.

Prone restraint means any restraint in which the student is held face down on the floor.

Reasonable force should be commensurate with the circumstances of the situation. The following factors should be considered in using reasonable physical force for the reasons stated in this policy:

  1. The size and physical, mental, and psychological condition of the student;
  2. The nature of the student's behavior or misconduct provoking the use of physical force;
  3. The instrumentality used in applying the physical force;
  4. The extent and nature of resulting injury to the student, if any including mental and psychological injury;
  5. The motivation of the school employee using physical force.

Upon request, the student's parents are given an explanation of the reasons for physical force.

It is the responsibility of the superintendent or designee to develop administrative regulations regarding this policy.



Policy References:

Legal Reference: 

Ingraham v.Wright, 430 U.S. 651 (1977).
Goss v. Lopez, 419 U.S. 565 (1975).
Tinkham v. Kole, 252 Iowa 1303, 110 N.W.2d 258 (1961).
Iowa Code §§ 279.8; 280.21.
281 I.A.C. 12.3(6); 103.

Cross Reference:

402.3         Abuse of Students by School District Employees
503.6         Physical Restraint and Seclusion of Students
503.6R1    Physical Restraint and Seclusion of Students - Regulation
503.6E1    Physical Restraint and Seclusion of Students - Documentation Form
503.6E2    Physical Restraint and Seclusion of Students - Debriefing Letter to Guardian of student Involved in an Occurrence Where                     Physical Restraint or Seclusion was Used
503.6E3    Physical Restraint and Seclusion of Students - Debriefing Meeting Document

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