FAB Strategies John Pagano, Ph.D., OTR/L

Reducing School Aggression, Restraint & Seclusion

School occupational therapists and teachers can combine functional sensory and behavioral strategies to reduce student aggression, restraint, and seclusion. School aggression, seclusion and restraint have become a major concern, particularly with students who have complex behavioral, mental health, trauma history, family, and/or sensory processing challenges. Reducing-Restraint-and-Seclusion Combined sensory and behavioral strategies help decrease aggression in students with complex behavior problems, reducing the need for restraint, seclusion and expulsion.

Integrated sensory and behavioral strategies include teaching students to use basic rules, emotion regulation, visual supports, active learning, mindfulness, yoga, adaptive techniques, movement breaks, and environmental adaptations. Sensory and behavioral strategies can be taught through whole class lessons, in small groups, as well as in individual occupational, speech, and mental health therapy interventions. The evidence-based integration of sensory and behavioral strategies described below improved the behavior of both regular and special education students. 

Evidence-based sensory and behavioral strategies for regular and special education studentsOccupational therapy intervention can improve child and adolescent mental health  School occupational therapy mental health intervention include sensory and behavioral strategies that enable students to participate in learning tasks

School occupational therapists can address student’s behavioral, social, educational, and sensory processing skills for improved school http://www.aota.org//media/Corporate/Files/AboutOT/Professionals/WhatIsOT/CY/FactSheets/OT%20%20School%20Mental%20Health%20Fact%20Sheet%20for%20web%20posting%20102109.pdf

The evidence-based integration of sensory and behavioral strategies described above have been integrated into existing school PATHS, DECA, and Second Step Positive Behavioral Support programs.  PATHS program trainers have been particularly supportive of the integration of sensory with positive behavioral support strategies for both special and regular education students. I presented on Integrating Sensory & Mindfulness Strategies into the PATHS program http://www.pathseducation.com/files/docs/paths-present.pdf Pictured below are participants of and the FAB Strategies display table at the PATHS 2014 Annual Conference.

Occupational therapists and teachers can combine sensory and positive behavioral support strategies to help reduce student aggression, restraint and seclusion.