Center Allowed to Continue Shocking Special Needs Students After Prank Call

  • January 26th, 2008

A special education school in Massachusetts is being allowed to continue its practice of administering electric shocks to students.

The practice of shocking students at the Judge Rotenberg Education Center in Canton, Massachusetts, came to national attention after it was revealed that a former resident of the center called in as a prank and ordered staff members to shock two students as punishment for misbehavior that never took place. All six staff members on duty when the incident took place have been fired and the police are considering filing criminal charges against the caller.

The Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services has said that it will allow the shock treatments to continue only in the most extreme cases where the treatment has been shown to reduce violent behavior.

According to an ABC News report, the school is the only facility in the country to use shock treatments in an attempt to control especially self-destructive special needs students. Although the practice is controversial, the school'™s founder, Dr. Matthew Israel, told ABC News that the shocks are 'extremely effective as a corrective procedure to encourage children not to show violent behavior.'

For ABC News's coverage of the controversy, click here

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Last Modified: 01/26/2008
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