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Alabama Senator drafting bill to put cameras in special education classrooms

WAFF's Kellie Miller reporting
Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 8:25 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Madison mother Kimberly McFadden has been pushing for cameras in special education classrooms for years. She successfully fought for cameras to be put in special education classrooms in Madison City Schools, and recently took her concerns to state leaders, including Sen. Arthur Orr.

“This idea came from a constituent,” Orr said. “A constituent who had a special needs child and had a situation in a classroom where obviously the child could not speak or appropriately record or reflect what happened.”

Many special education students are nonverbal, and cannot explain or describe what happened in most situations. Orr believes the cameras would protect students and teachers in Alabama.

“It seemed like a plausible idea when you look at states like Texas and Louisiana that have laws like this,” Orr said. “We need to consider it and that is what we are doing now.”

This effort comes weeks after a lawsuit was filed against Limestone County Schools and one of its former employees. A mother claims the employee abused her nonverbal autistic son.

Other states, like Texas and Louisiana, have laws in place requiring cameras in special ed settings. Orr said his team is reviewing those laws and evaluating the cost.

“We are looking at other states to see what differences between the various states’ laws are out there, and why did they crafted the bill in a certain way,” Orr said. “So that’s where we are right now...in the investigation phase, cost and implementation.”

When the bill is ready, it will be voted on in the legislature and sent to the governor after the election. In the meantime, Kimberly McFadden encourages parents to reach out to their lawmakers.

[ READ MORE: Cameras to be put in special education classrooms, Madison City Schools ]

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