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Collection of data on the use of restraint and seclusion for all students.

To:           Local Educational Agency (LEA) Representatives

From:      California Department of Education (CDE) –
                California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) Team

Date:       July 31, 2019

SubjectCALPADS Update FLASH #159

Collection of Data on the Use of Restraint and Seclusion for All Students

Assembly Bill (AB) 2657, (Chapter 998, Statutes of 2018), went into effect on January 1, 2019, adding sections 49005–49006.4 to California’s Education Code regarding the use of restraint and seclusion for students receiving either general education or special education. The California Department of Education (CDE) informed the field of this new law in a letter dated December 24, 2018, posted on the CDE website at: [NOTE: The preceding link is no longer valid.]

These data will be collected in CALPADS for the first time as part of the 2019–20 End-of-Year (EOY) 3 data submission. Therefore, LEAs should be collecting these data locally beginning this fall. In summary, LEAs are required to collect and submit the use of:

  • Behavioral Restraint, defined in statute as:
    • Mechanical Restraint – Use of a device or equipment to restrict a pupil’s freedom of movement (with exceptions).
    • Physical Restraint – A personal restriction that immobilizes or reduces the ability of a pupil to move his or her torso, arms, legs, or head freely (with exceptions).
  • Seclusion, defined in statute as the involuntary confinement of a pupil alone in a room or area from which the pupil is physically prevented from leaving.

For the full statutory definitions of restraint and seclusion, LEAs should refer to the appropriate Education Code sections, or the legislation which is posted on the California Legislative Information website, on the AB-2657 Pupil discipline: restraint and seclusion web page at:

New Discipline File Structure and Codes

To accommodate this new collection, and to address structural issues with the current Student Discipline (SDIS) file, the CDE is replacing the SDIS file with three new files, described below. In addition, the Disciplinary Action Category code set has been renamed, “Student Incident Result” and new codes have been added to this code set to collect the data needed to meet the new reporting requirements.

The three new files include:

  • Student Incident (SINC) File, in which LEAs report all incidents: (1) resulting in the use of physical restraint, mechanical restraint, or seclusion; and (2) in which a statutory offense is committed.
  • Student Incident Result (SIRS) File, in which LEAs report all results for each incident. Each incident should have at least one corresponding SIRS record for each student who were restrained or secluded, or who committed an offense:
    • A student who is restrained or secluded, but not as a result of committing a statutory offense, should have a SIRS record with a Student Incident Result code of one of more of the following:
      • (501) Physical Restraint (new)
      • (502) Mechanical Restraint (new)
      • (600) Seclusion (new)
    • A student who commits a statutory offense:
      • Should have at least one SIRS record with Student Incident Result code of:
        • (100) Out-of-School Suspension
        • (110) In-School Suspension
        • (200) Expulsion
        • (300) Other Means of Correction (modified to remove “No Action”)
        • (400) No Action (new)
        • (700) School-related Arrest (new)
        • (800) Law Enforcement Referral, not including school-related arrests (new)
      • Could have an additional SIRS records with a Student Incident Result code of one or more of the following:
        • (501) Physical Restraint (new)
        • (502) Mechanical Restraint (new)
        • (600) Seclusion (new)

Students may have more than one result record for one incident in order to fully capture the incident and the dispositions that result to address the incident. For example, a student may have been physically restrained and then placed in an In-School Suspension. In this case, the student would have a SIRS record with 501, and a SIRS record with 110. Or a student may be arrested, suspended, and later expelled. In this case, the student would have a SIRS record with 700, a SIRS record with 100, and a SIRS record with 200.

  • Student Offense (SOFF) File, in which LEAs report the statutory student offense (Student Offense code) that was committed for any incidents in which a statutory offense was committed. LEAs are required to report all statutory offenses, regardless of the result type (e.g., regardless of whether the student was suspended or expelled). No changes have been made to the Student Offense code set.

The CDE has reviewed these proposed files with the student information system (SIS) vendors and has made modifications based on their input. LEAs should consult with their SIS vendors regarding how these data are submitted to their local systems.

The new files and codes will be posted to the CALPADS web page in August 2019. Additionally, a follow-up to the December 2018 letter was sent to county and district superintendents, Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) Directors, and Charter School Administrators, informing them of the collection of this data in CALPADS. The letter reiterates that the data are to be collected for all students and stresses the importance of ensuring all staff are appropriately trained to identify, document, and report these incidents, particularly site administrators, so that CALPADS Administrators are not having to determine what constitutes incidents of restraint and seclusion that must be reported.

Questions:   CALPADS/CBEDS/CDS Operations Office | | 916-324-6738
Last Reviewed: Friday, September 22, 2023