11 May 2017

Bill to ban seclusion rooms in schools passes third reading

7:40 pm on 11 May 2017

A bill that will ban the use of seclusion rooms in schools and early childhood services has passed its third reading in Parliament.

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Photo: 123RF

The Education Update Amendment Bill also creates a legal framework for the use of physical restraint in schools.

Education Minister Nikki Kaye said it sent a clear signal to educators that there was no situation where it wes acceptable for students to be secluded.

The law change would make it illegal for both schools and early childhood education services to use seclusion - defined as a student being involuntarily placed alone in a room they can't freely get out of.

The bill also established a framework for digital education known as Communities of Online Learning (COOLs), which the government said would increase the education options for young students.

COOLs are controversial, with some educators fearing they will lead to the demise of small rural primary schools.

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