PAPPI Minutes

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Notes from call April 12th 2013

  • Greg talked about the PAPPI campaign to creating a guide for parents to engage school systems and improve practices.
  • Deb said schools don't admit problems and parents fear retaliation. Collaborative problem solving is very effective alternative (e.g. Ross Greene and Think Kids at MGH: In Gloucester she raised the issue of isolation rooms at the SEPAC (SPED parents group required by MA law for each district). Many parents expressed concern. The PAC - School Committee liason raised the issue with the school committee then the superintendent. Offered Valery Hammond, Director of NAMI MA to give a NAMI basics training and Dr Ablon to do Think Kids to training. Both very responsive. We're not sure if the school system did that training. Gloucester created a new page for their IEPs which parents could sign or not to allow use of the "quiet room". Overall things seem better in Gloucester.
  • Deb talked about a child who was in the North Shore Education Consortium in Peabody (substantially separate multi-town SPED school). The child had a very disturbing experience there. The child was removed and is doing much better. Deb expressed concern that this is a high risk environment and would like follow up on it.
  • We talked briefly about CHINS reform in MA, Deb's contact with the school nurse in Gloucester and possible grant money available from DMH.

Follow up actions:

  • Greg to send Deb contact info of MA DPH Director of School Nurses and her work on restraint to give to Gloucester nurse.
  • Greg to ask contact at DMH if there is grant money for training in public schools.
  • Someone to find copy of new policy/signature form for Gloucester. Can also post info on work in Gloucester and update info on Northampton. Then edit it in to a form other PACs can use.
  • Greg to send contact info for Jennifer Honig, Lawyer with Mental Health Legal Advocacy who has offered pro-bono legal services to children who have been restrained. Deb to share that with parent of child in North Shore Collaborative.
  • Someone to reach out to Valery Hammond at NAMI to get info on how she engages constructively with school systems. May also talk to Dr Ablon of Think Kids.
  • Greg to pick another meeting time in May and continue to reach out and recruit new members for PAPPI

March 7th 2013 Meeting Notes

Greg, Cate and Deb met on March 7th.

- Deb updated us on the compromise legislation to update Chapter 33 in Maine. It sounds like a great compromise which protects he important changes in Chapter 33 while alleviating the concerns of teachers. The next stage in this work is to help teachers, students and families implement the new rules successfully. Deb may be invited to participate in that in the future.

- We talked about ways to work with school systems to move from Restraint and Seclusion to Positive Behavioral Supports. Cate described her experience in Northampton. Greg described his work and the challenges in Newton. We discussed ways to make change, especially institutional change. A few example are, create a guide for parents of children who have been restrained, engage with the state during the every six year SPED Comprehensive Program Review, work with the PACs and School Committee on new policies and legal strategies.

Follow up items:

  • Cate to send documentation on her work in Northampton
  • Greg to collect policy update ideas and start to build a web site for that
  • Greg to contact CPR to ask the state to look carefully at practices in Newton during the review this April

January 17 2013 meeting notes

Greg, Deb, Cate and Sue met via conference call. Next call Thursday 2/7 at 8PM

Notes below. Additions, edits or comments welcome.

  • We did intros. Noted that people write letters but don't always feel connected to a group or movement. Also noted that a big challlenge is getting schools to implement positive supports.

Greg asked that we keep thinking about small things people can so we can start recruiting more widely. Suggested pairing people activate them instead of posting "to do" actions on a web site.

  • We discussed the chapter 33 work. Deb will know very soon when a bill to modify Chapter 33 is docketed . We came up with the idea to contact people in Maine via interested groups and e-mails lists and ask them to write or call their Maine legislators. We will create a message and gather e-mail lists and groups to contact. See action items below. We also discussed writing a position paper on what happened in MA and doing media work to get positive articles in the Maine press. We didn't come up with specific actions on those last two ideas.
  • We talked about how to promote the petition for Keeping All Students Safe
  • We talked about the goals of the group, noted that we need to find ways to promote PBIS and noted that the group purpopse is not very clear on the web site:

Action items: Rule 33

Petition for Keeping Students Safe

  • Greg will get back to Bill about how to enable more people to spread the word about the peitition. Then contact the group with actions they can do on that.


  • Greg will updated the web site to make the goals stand out more and Sue will comment on the changes

Agenda for next meeting

December 7th 2012 meeting notes

  • Update on recent work:

PAPPI (Parents And Professionals for Positive Interventions) is the name for now. Greg noted he is working with Newton, MA to get details on the design of the rooms in his district. Deb campaigning to protect the laws in Maine as there is some push back from legislators and unions. Deb will be very tied up with thiis work and the holidays for the next 4 weeks. Deb will think of things she can ask people to do to help. She will send that list to Greg who will try to find people to help.

  • Discuss communication strategy (facebook group, e-mail list etc.)
    • We plan four levels of communication and engagement:
  1. Private Facebook group. Deb will create a new private Facebook page after the holidays.
  2. This list of people for regular e-mails and meeting info
  3. The web site (everyone should look at that page and make a small edit anywhere on it to show you can access it)
  4. An e-mail list for people who want to be kept in the loop but will only participate occasionally. tbd exactly how we set this up
  • Discuss status and to do list for first campaign

The To Do list for the first campaign is here: We talked about focusing on a different city where know parents already. Greg is reaching out to help pick a new city. In the mean time we talked about how to do the first task (Collect data on Lewiston from Federal site: and post it.). Cara will start working on that and ask Deb for advice as she gets in to it.

  • Set agenda for next meeting with a goal of sending recruiting e-mails in January

Agenda is: 10 minutes - Update on recent work and introductions
20 minutes - review of communication channels
20 minutes - Review of work on first campaign. Try to get a few more things on the To Do list done.
10 minutes - set agenda and time for next meeting

Anyone who has 30 minutes free to work on this, pick something from the To Do list. If it's not clear what to do, send me an e-mail and I will give some direction.

November 16 2012 Meeting

Deb and Greg talked on 11/16

Next meeting Friday December 7th at 2PM.


We discussed goals briefly. The only change was to add the words restraint and seclusion and positive behavioral supports to goals 2 and 3. - We brainstormed our first campaign to address goals 2,3,4, and 5

Possible title (I made this up after the call so comments welcome):
From restraint and seclusion to positive behavioral support, one school district at a time

Steps in the campaign:

  1. Collect data from Federal site: and other sources to identify school systems with higher than normal incidence (Deb already identified Lewiston, ME as the first one to work on).
  2. Gather the data, post it on a web site and add context and explanation (e.g. what is the norm, how far out is this system and anything else which explains what it means and why it's important.
  3. Research the policies (e.g. JKAA) and other info on that school system
  4. Find ways to influence the school board and administration to address the issue
    1. Get the contact info for the school board
    2. Find affected parents in the target community.
    3. Find professionals near by or otherwise motivated to help
    4. Identify elected representatives who can help
    5. Identify state level administrators who can help
  5. Create a packet of information and message for the school board (aka school committee in MA)
    1. It should express concern for the issue, identify gaps in policies and offer resources and ways to make things better
  6. When the message and people to deliver it are final reach out to the school board and administration
  7. Leave behind a group of empowered parents and others who can continue to work in the community. Get regular updates on how it's going and support them.

Once we run a campaign like this in one city or town, we document how to do and move on to the next one.

Second campaign idea: Implementing laws and regulations in states that don't have them - Identify states that don't have any relevant laws or regulations - Collect examples of incidents and post that - Create a packet of information which shows how to create new laws or regulations based on the work done in Maine - Find groups in the target states and share the packet with them

This one needs more definition but it addresses the goal 6 of improving laws and regulations.

Other subjects: - Deb mentioned that she has or may create a private facebook group to encourage discussion.

Action items:

  • Deb to suggest some new names for the group (name should signify: open, grassroots, compassionate, motivated to make change)
  • Deb to write down the steps needed to take data off the OCR web site (aka step one in the campaign).
  • Once new name is agreed on, Greg to move wiki page to that place.
  • Greg to update web page
  • Greg to set agenda for next meeting (focused on how we recruit more people and what we will ask them to do once they express interest)

October 26 2012 meeting

  • Introductions and brief review of recent work

Discussed our perspectives and goals. Greg talked about Mass initiative and work to create parents group. Deb talked about her work on the regulations in Maine. Bill talked about his experience and sense that this is a growing movement and he has heard from many people fromm all over the country. He thinks the next phase will be addressng issues of retaliation. We all noted that it's a systemic problem and will need a long term concerted effort to address it..

  • Adding people to the group

We agreed that anyone who wants to participate can send Greg an e-mail. If they want vto ohelpp advocate with ut, Greg will then add them to the cc and invite them to the next meeting.
Note, people who were not on the call, please confirm to me that you are OK with that

  • Goals discussion. we came up with these goals not in priority order:
    • Faciliate the ability of parents to tell their story and be heard without retaliation
    • Improve transparency about what is happening in schools and analyze data to demonstrate the use of restraint and seclusion.
    • Develop tools and information for school systems to help reduce the use of restraint and seclusion through positive behavioral support.
    • Increase the size of our group. Ensure that we have actionable tasks for new parents as they express a desire to be involved.
    • Improve the laws and regulations on restraint.
  • Agenda for next meeting:
    • 20 minutes - Introductions and review of recent work
    • 5 minutes - A quick read through to approve the goals.
    • 5 minutes - Discuss any logistical issues or ideas (e.g. should we move this to an e-mail list, is the wiki good, too many e-mails or just right?)
    • 20 minutes - Brainstrom objectives and campaigns to work on. Each should contribute to one of the goals above.
    • 10 minutes - Set agenda for next meeting.