Brighton Hill Community School

37. Physical Intervention

Information & Policies

Published on - 13-02-2015

To establish a clear practical definition of restrictive physical intervention and to ensure a common understanding amongst staff, students and parents/guardians of students of the School.
Definition:  Restrictive physical intervention is when a member of staff uses force intentionally to restrict a child’s movement against his or her will.  It should rarely if ever be used.     

This policy applies to all staff.
The lead manager for the application and monitoring of this policy is the Headteacher.

All staff at Brighton Hill Community School aim to help students take responsibility for their own behaviour.  We do this through a combination of approaches, which include:

The promotion of positive behaviour can be found in our behaviour policy.
This policy is consistent with our Child Protection, Safeguarding and Single Equality policies, and with national and local guidance for schools on safeguarding children.

Duty of Care
We all have a duty of care towards the students in our School. This duty of care applies as much to what we don’t do as what we do do. When students are in danger of hurting themselves or others, or of causing significant damage to property, we have a responsibility to intervene.

Any citizen has the common law power to intervene in an emergency to use reasonable force in self defence, to prevent another person from being injured or committing a criminal offence. All School staff authorised by the Headteacher also have statutory power in addition to common law power.
     Teachers are authorised to use physical restraint whether on-site or during off-site activities. 
     Teachers will be supported in their legal right to restrain students physically where their actions
     conform to this policy. 

Situations where appropriate physical restraint would be deemed reasonable include:

Staff will NOT use physical intervention out of anger; out of frustration or in any way which could cause injury to a student.

Use of Physical Intervention
Physical restraint can take several forms.  It might involve staff in:
Physically standing between students
Leading a student by the hand
Standing in the way of a student
Restraining a student’s limbs
Physically moving a student away from an area of danger or threat
Some helpful strategies and/or responses:



Remain controlled
Talk clearly giving clear instructions
Keep talking calmly
If a student needs to be removed, move WITH the student towards the appropriate exit
Request help and tell the student you are requesting help
Remove any audience to maintain a calm atmosphere
Remove other people if they are in danger
Remove potential weapons
Assume the student is going to calm down

Use confrontational body language
Engage in prolonged and exaggerated eye contact
Use confrontational language
Use physical intervention unless all other methods of calming have been used
Use restraint to prevent the student leaving the scene if it is apparent that he/she does not represent a threat to others or his or herself
Hold a student around the neck or collar or in any other way that might restrict the his/her ability to breathe
Slap, punch, trip or kick a student
Twist or force limbs against a joint
Hold a student by the hair or ear

Recording and Reporting
If physical restraint occurs the incident must be recorded using form PR1 (Form 14 Staff Handbook).
The parents / guardians of the student will be informed of the incident as soon as possible after the event.
We recognise that there may be some children within our school who find physical contact in general particularly unwelcome as a consequence of their culture/religious group or disability. There may be others for whom such contact is troubling as a result of their personal history, in particular of abuse.
A risk assessment may be carried out by a senior member of staff where there is cause for concern about a student.

Supporting and Reviewing
We recognise that it is distressing to be involved in a physical intervention, whether as the student being held, the person doing the holding, or someone observing or hearing about what has happened.
After a restrictive physical intervention, we will give support to the student so that they can understand why it was necessary. Where we can, we record how the student felt about this. Where it is appropriate, we have the same sort of conversations with other students who observed what happened.
In all cases, we will wait until the student has calmed down enough to be able to talk productively and learn from this conversation. If necessary, the student will be asked whether he or she has been injured so that appropriate first aid can be given. This also gives the student an opportunity to say whether anything inappropriate has happened in connection with the incident.
We will also support adults who were involved, either actively or as observers, by giving them the chance to talk through what has happened with the most appropriate person from the staff team.

Concerns and Complaints
If a student or parent / guardian has a concern about the way restrictive physical
intervention has been used, our School’s complaints procedure explains how to take the matter further. (Operational Policy no. 23)
Where there is an allegation of assault or abusive behaviour, we ensure that the Headteacher is immediately informed. We would also follow our child protection procedures.
If the concern, complaint or allegation concerns the Head teacher, we ensure that the Chair of Governors is informed.

The monitoring and review procedure for this policy is as follows:

The Headteacher will maintain a log of any instances of physical restraint and report all
instances to the Governing Body via his report to the Governors. The analysis of the log will
consider equalities issues such as age, gender, disability, culture and religion issues in order to make sure that there is no potential discrimination; we also consider potential child protection issues.

Hampshire Guidance:

Last Ratified: March 2015
Next review date: March 2017