Georgia first-grader placed in handcuffs by school officials

Ga. First-Grader Placed in Handcuffs by School Officials
Ga. First-Grader Placed in Handcuffs by School Officials

This was not your typical school time-out. A 6-year-old Georgia boy was placed in handcuffs for reportedly being disruptive, and Lakaisha Reid, the boy's mother, isn't happy about it.

"It hurts when I touch it," Patrick said.

"He just ran away from school. It does not require handcuffs ... these were handcuffs behind the back. Silver handcuffs. Metal," his mother told WXIA.

Reid, who spoke exclusively with WXIA, says her son is a student with special needs and a first-grader at Pine Ridge Elementary.

The school says Patrick ran into a busy street and was later placed in handcuffs by a school resource officer after he repeatedly tried harming himself. The school says the handcuffs were for his "personal safety."

Reid says she's trained in dealing with special needs kids like her son and didn't think the school's action was appropriate.

According to school policy, "Physical restraint may be utilized only when the student is an immediate danger to himself or others and the student is not responsive to less intensive behavioral interventions including verbal directives or other de-escalation techniques." The parents of the child must then be notified.

A similar situation occurred two years ago in Milledgeville, Georgia, a city about two hours south of Atlanta.

Local police handcuffed a 6-year-old girl there who was reportedly throwing a tantrum in the school and took her to the police station.

Even after backlash from the situation, the police chief stood by the officer's decision, saying it was for the little girl's personal safety.

Reid is hoping Pine Ridge Elementary will review its policies on restraining students. She said she did not intend to send her son back to school Monday.

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