Two parents, two slightly different views on controversial Iowa school seclusion rooms

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“It was horrible.” That’s how Nicole Wallace describes her and her son’s experience with seclusion rooms.

Back in 2017, Wallace’s son Keagan, who suffers form learning disabilities, would disobey teachers by simply touching a door knob. He knew it would land him in the room, where he was trying to avoid bullies.The experience has scarred him.

“Every time i would get a referral they would lock me up in that room. It’s kind of like child abuse,” says high school freshman Keagan Daniels.

With nothing to do for hours he says he would end picking at wall paint to pass time. Davenport public schools have since changed the way they use seclusion rooms, using them as last resorts. Wallace still thinks they’re unnecessary.

“You’re going to get a worst reaction. These kids, are confinement is not good for teenagers especially with what they’re going through,” she shares.

Another parent has a slightly different opinion. Frank Klipsch say he does believe in spaces where kids could have time to breathe, but not on their own.

“If i found out my child was ever put in a space unsupervised you couldn’t do it.” Klipsch’s son requires special attention. When he need time to cool off he had a very different experience.

“There was nice music playing egg chairs, comfortable things, headphones for them to listen to. It was set up with a certified professional,” shares Klipsch.

Both parents do agree that students facing behavioral issues should require counseling. One of the new rules proposed requires schools to convene a meeting to figure out changes and the support needed for students who’ve been in seclusion several times.

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