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School staff attend safety training

Photo Provided Fourteen administrators and staff members in the Bridgeport Exempted Village School District took part in a two-day Safety Care training to learn how to appropriately respond to challenging behaviors. Sessions focused on intervention and prevention and another 18 staff members previously completed the program, which was led by District Special Education Coordinator Beverly Prati.

BRIDGEPORT — Teachers, staff and administrators are getting lessons in safety care during a special training session at Bridgeport High School.

Fourteen people took part in the first of two meetings with district Special Education Coordinator Beverly Prati, who led discussion on intervention and prevention tactics for challenging behaviors on Oct. 28. A second session is scheduled for Nov. 10.

“The purpose of the safety care training is to provide our staff with a set of skills and strategies that allow them to respond safely and appropriately in a variety of settings to individuals who may sometimes exhibit disruptive or dangerous behaviors,” Prati said. “The training provides prevention and deescalation interventions. It also provides staff with physical techniques for responding safely to dangerous behaviors.”

The first day centered on conditions associated with challenging behaviors and prevention of incidents.

Attendees learned about supportive environments, creating safe environments, safely approaching and interacting with individuals who might engage in dangerous behaviors, positive interaction strategies and ways to manage your own emotional reactions, recognizing and responding to triggers and signals, when and how to call for assistance, safety interventions during deescalation, the deescalation process and appropriate interventions in the event the student is in crisis.

The second day of training focused on physical management, which is used as a last resort and only when necessary for safety.

“We hope to use all the things learned on day one to avoid using physical management, but there are times when physical management is needed for safety,” she noted.

Prati said another 18 staff members took part in a previous session while this was the second year of implementing safety care in the district.

“We hope to continually build the number of staff who are trained in safety care,” Prati said. “Our plan is to continually grow the number who are trained as needed.”

She was thankful to the district for supporting the staff and providing the training to help minimize dangerous incidents.

Prati said it also allows the staff to respond appropriately and safely to incidents that occur.

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