Children with Type 1 diabetes still face unnecessary educational hurdles
at 2:47pm by Leslie Holleran
November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, and maybe we do need some consciousness-raising, at least if a recent New York Times story is any indication.
Type 1 diabetes, also known as insulin-dependent diabetes, primarily occurs in children, and recent statistics show that it’s on the rise. Unfortunately, the Times story suggests, educators in Seattle — as well as much of the country — do not always know what they need to about helping kids with Type 1 deal with the demands of this chronic illness, such as insulin shots and blood sugar testing. The article features the experience of the Pollards, formerly of Seattle, who moved to Maine in the wake of what they found to be an unwelcoming and unhelpful environment for their son with Type 1 diabetes at a Seattle private school.
Federal law requires that schools, except those run by religious institutions without federal funding, accommodate students with disabilities, including diabetes. As a result, parents have brought complaints to federal authorities in 400 cases since 2011, and this may be just a small representation of the problem.
The Times article, which was picked up by the Seattle Times print edition, also includes a list of resources for parents to learn more about their rights and how best to partner with schools to keep their kids safe.