Thanks for sharing info with the group, Emily!
Based on federal laws - chiefly Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) - schools that are recipients of federal funds are prohibited from discriminating against children with a known "disability". The term "disability" legally means that the condition affects a major life activity such as walking, talking, learning, providing self-care, eating, thinking, etc. As such, type 1 diabetes is largely viewed as meeting that legal definition.
The law requires a school to provide ...
...a free, appropriate public education (aka FAPE)
...equal to non-disabled peers
...with reasonable accommodations
...including related aids and healthcare services
...all of which is to be delivered in the least restrictive manner.
In order for the child to have access to a FAPE:
- it is illegal to require a parent or parent designee to provide care; a parent may choose to do so but cannot be required to do so,be it on a regular basis, field trips, extracurriculars, etc.
- it is illegal for a school or district to implement blanket policies that fail to meet the INDIVIDUALIZED needs of a particular child or that have the affect of preventing the child's needs from being met.
- it is illegal for a school/district to in any way assist or promote discriminatory practices (such as outside vendors providing afterschool programs held on school property)
- financial burden is not a valid defense; schools/districts cannot legitimately cite budget constraints as a reason for failing to meet a child's needs,
- it is the right of a school/district to annually review the child's 504 Plan of accommodations,
- the 504 Team is to be comprised of persons who are deemed knowledgeable about the child; since parents are most knowledgeable, it stands to reason they should be afforded opportunity to participate meaningfully in the development of a 504 Plan,
- there are no rules about the length of a 504 Plan of accommodations
- every school/district is required to have a channel of Due Process to resolve conflicts and disagreements.
Give children with diabetes a voice.
Learn about the laws and your child's rights.
Advocate for your child.
Together, we will make all children with diabetes safe at school!
Lisa Shenson, Diabetes Parent & Advocate