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Schools physically restrained students of 9000 times last year

BOSTON – the Public school officials in Massachusetts say they had to physically restrict students more than 9000 times during the 2016-17 academic year.

Districts were required to report cases to the state for the first time as part of new rules intended to curb the practice.

State education officials released the data this week in response to a records request from The Associated Press.

The data show the 9,070 restraint cases resulted in 244 injuries to students or staff. Most schools reported few cases of compulsion, but some had more than 200.

Christine Griffin, head of the Disability Law Center advocacy group. She called the findings “very disturbing.”

The John J. Doran elementary School in Fall River reported 253 restraint cases, the most in the state. School leaders referred questions to the state.

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