OSHA report: Staff injuries ‘well above national average’ in Salem-Keizer schools
SALEM, Ore. (KPTV) - State investigators have issued a scathing report on student-caused teacher injuries in Salem-Keizer Public Schools.
A report released publicly by the Salem-Keizer Education Association Monday from Oregon’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found that the rate of staff injuries in Salem-Keizer schools is well above the national average.
This new report comes after previous FOX 12 Investigates coverage this summer, where teacher injury reports obtained through a public records request showed how the issue gradually became worse in Salem-Keizer schools in recent years.
OSHA issued the following “high impact” recommendations to Salem-Keizer Public Schools for workplace safety:
- “Provide additional, appropriate educational space for students with higher behaviors. An example of appropriate design is the BIC (‘behavior intervention center,’ see previous FOX 12 Investigates coverage on this resource in Salem-Keizer Public Schools)
- “Provide more “student facing” staff with appropriate education, experience, and skills, such as the counselors, social workers, and educators, to adequately staff school and other settings to provide safe workplaces for all District employees.”
- “Make steps to reasonably ensure employees document and report all high behaviors (hitting, kicking, shoving, beating, clubbing, biting, piercing, pushing, squeezing, and verbal assault), near-misses, and injuries.”
- “Assist staff working with students, including bus drivers, in understanding the hazards to which they may be exposed, including hitting, kicking, shoving, beating, clubbing, biting, piercing, pushing, squeezing, and verbal assault from students in high behavior.”
- “Effectively train District employees that work with students in the acceptable methods to protect their selves from students in high behavior, especially in regard to restraint.”
- “Bring Safety Committee operations into compliance.”
- “Investigate all injuries that lead to lost work time.”
- “Ensure Instructional Assistants and bus drivers know which students have historically had behaviors that caused injuries and which students riding their bus have had behaviors during the day at school.”
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