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December 13, 2004

School and Daycare

Question from Federal Way, Washington, USA:

I would like to create an IEP for my daughter. Who do I talk to about this? My daughter is new to a school in our area and the teacher stated that she planned to force her to stay up with the rest of the class. The teacher stated that she did not feel diabetes should be considered a disability and that my daughter should be able to learn just like any other student. As of present, we have never used her diabetes as an excuse for anything. We have only been with this teacher for two weeks.

Answer:

Historically, children with type 1 diabetes are protected under Section 504 and some children, who demonstrate that diabetes interferes with academic performance, are protected under IDEA. It should be noted that, in order to qualify under 504, it need not be shown that diabetes impacts learning, only a major life activity such as eating, caring for oneself, metabolism, etc. You, as the parent, should contact the school principal to initiate the process. For more information, please call the ADA at 1-800-DIABETES.

CJ