Draft Government Guidance: "Reducing the Need for Restraint and Restrictive Intervention"

In January 2018 a Kent teacher (Mr T) was found guilty of professional misconduct against a child following an incident which had occurred in November 2016.  The findings against him included the fact Mr T said to the disruptive teenager "I don't care if I get sent to prison.  I'll knock your ****ing lights out".
 
Mr T was also allegedly restrained by another member of staff during the incident. (Mr T denies this allegation but was found guilty of it.)  Mr T, in his defence, alleged how stressed he was at the school and  overwhelmed by disruptive behaviour.
 
Dealing with challenging behaviour in schools is a regular event for staff these days, yet is high risk for civil, criminal or employment disputes.  No one appears to enjoy it.
 
Staff are often unsure what they are legally allowed to do.  Management are unsure what training they should be providing to staff, as there is no national mandate for the required standard for what should be taught.  I hear many incorrect interpretations of the law with staff having been told "it's the rules, you'll get sued if you do that".
 
Ultimately when something goes wrong and the legal teams are involved, every case will be viewed in its own right as to identification of risks and whether suitable and sufficient control measures were involved to eliminate or reduce risk to its lowest level.
 
As an Expert Witness working on legal cases where staff or children have been injured it is evident that staff are highly stressed, and ill-equipped to deal with children who challenge them and are unsure of what help the school can get to try to manage these types of situation down.
 
Access to services via the local authority is constantly shrinking and pushing schools to the private sector for answers.
 
In November 2017 the new draft guidance Reducing the Need for Restrictive Intervention” was released by the Departments for Education and for Health.  The care and custody sectors have long had their own guidance documents about reducing challenging behaviour and restraints.  For example in 2014 the care sector was issued with “Positive and Proactive Care: Reducing the need for restrictive interventions”.  We work with this guidance when we deal with care and clinical settings.
 
It's also a reality that currently going through parliament is a Bill for an Act of Parliament to be created called The Use of Force Bill.  This will cover mandatory requirements for all staff training, recording use of force incidents and mandatory policies and processes.  This may take several years to be passed as law but it’s on the horizon!
 
Watch our YouTube information video HERE concerning the November 2017 guidance.
 
At Total Train this is our area of national expertise and Joanne works as advisor for coroner, civil and criminal courts.  Joanne provides training and consultancy to the education, care, clinical and custody sectors.
 
Joanne is registered with several national Expert Witness agencies and trained through Bond Solon Expert Witness and Cardiff University law school.  She has advised and written national policy and training materials for custody settings
 
Angela Brown is our resident Occupational Therapist who specialises in Sensory Integration, and together Joanne and Angela are able to offer schools not only training, but assessments of children and plans to manage down challenging behaviour, incorporating therapeutic methods to try to avoid the need for restraints. 
 
We would be pleased to talk to any work place concerning their situation to see what help we can provide. You may be surprised at how reasonable our rates can be.