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504 plan

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Laura, Jul 19, 2006.

  1. Laura

    Laura Approved members

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    OK this is issue #2 I'm having with our new school. First, we've never been to public school so do we draw up our own 504 and take it with us or do we do one there with everyone present?

    Today I got a call from the principal. Even though they don't have a nurse, and the head nurse who was in charge of 14 schools quit, they still want to meet with us and figure out what to do. I mentioned I would do a meeting with them but I wanted a 504 plan and he said "we will talk about everything and we'll decide if you should have a 504 plan." I go in this afternoon. I don't want to be "that mom" who freaks out on everyone but I do want my child to be safe. I think people just don't realize how serious Type 1 is and the complications that can come about. :(
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2006
  2. mischloss

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    Hi, I understand completely. I am actually working on two 504 plans. One for daily shots since my son is on that right now and one for the insulin pump which he will be getting into in the next few months. You can download pretty good templates right here from Children with Diabetes and then just change the names and genders of the kids. :p They are grouped I believe by school age and if it is for daily shots or pumping. Please dont let the school staff talk you out of presenting one and having them sign off on it. I made the mistake of not having one for elementary school since everyone knew my son so well and it was his last year there. But believe me, I ran across some pretty weird teachers that wanted to make an example out of my son's condition. In other words, they refused to acknowledge that his behavior or test scores could be skewed because of blood sugar numbers. Poor thing never took a blood test before the national testing to see if he would be out of wack or not. Luckily he did great with the test score. But had he NOT, we wouldn't be able to prove anything regarding his blood numbers and the test score results.

    The 504 plan outlines when and how often he should be testing his bg's. How the numbers should be considered regarding school tests, homework make up schedules and doctor's visits. Clinic visits to take his shots, field trips (should you have to accompany him or are you okay with a trained staff coming along for the field trips!). If you outline everything in the 504 plan, such as him being able to take insulin shots in the classroom, then later in the year one ignorant teacher can't give your child a hard time about testing his bg or getting his shots to him.

    Hope this helps a bit. And just remember you are the one in charge of your child's health...don't let the school push you around. :cwds:
     
  3. selketine

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    You have a right to request a meeting to consider first of all whether your daughter qualifies for the 504 plan. You should write up a letter and bring it with you formally requesting that meeting. The school system should have a 504 coordinator (and the school too it seems).

    From the ADA site:

    As the parent or legal guardian of a child with diabetes, you have the right:

    • To have your child assessed under IDEA and/or Section 504
    • To hold an IEP or a Section 504 meeting with school and school district personnel. You have the right to bring an advocate, attorney, and/or experts to this meeting to better
    • explain your child's diabetes management.
    • To develop an IEP or a Section 504 plan that specifically states your child's needs and the services required to meet these needs. You do not have to sign the plan if you do not agree with it. To begin implementation, you can sign the parts you agree with and not sign the parts that still require discussion.
    • To be notified of any proposed changes in your child's plan, to attend any meetings concerning proposed changes, and to approve any changes.

    I would request a meeting and not let this informal meeting with the principal BE the meeting. That would give you a bit more time to get materials together if you need to do it. There are sample 504 plans you can use at the ADA or CWD site to come up with a 504. I think the biggest problem is if they deny it to begin with. First you need to get them to agree that your child is eligible for the 504 and have that put in writing.

    You might also check out this: http://www.diabetes.org/uedocuments/504-2-pager.pdf
     
  4. Laura

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    So they could turn me down? :confused:

    He also has celiac and athsma and is allergic to peanuts. :(
     
  5. selketine

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    Ah...my 4 yr old (who is diabetic) is also allergic to peanuts. I've done lots of research on doing 504's both for allergies and diabetes but he doesn't start kindergarten for another year.

    I don't know if it is handled in every school the same way but I think sometimes you have an "eligibility" meeting and then another meeting to work out the 504. It is possible that they could say no but then you could appeal. From everything I've read about 504 plans and diabetes they should not be able to refuse to implement the 504.

    I think if you have the allergy to put in there you need to download some of the templates mentioned. The peanut allergy website has a board devoted to "SCHOOLS" and there is good info there to read over. http://www.peanutallergy.com/bbpage.htm You will see some threads there mentioning the 504 evaluation and eligibility form some places use.
     
  6. Laura

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    Thank you, I appreciate your help.
     
  7. selketine

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    Here is a bit more about the cafeteria and allergies:

    The United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service, Accommodating Children with Special Dietary Needs in the School Nutrition Programs http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Guidance/special_dietary_needs.pdf


    page 5:
    "In Cases of Food Allergy
    Generally, children with food allergies or intolerances do not have a disability as defined under either Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or Part B of IDEA, and the school food service may, but is not required to, make food substitutions for them. However, when in the licensed physician's assessment, food allergies may result in severe, life-threatening (anaphylactic) reactions, the child's condition would meet the definition of "disability," and the substitutions prescribed by the licensed physician must be made."

    page 25:
    Situation 4: A child has a life threatening allergy which causes an anaphylactic reaction to peanuts. The slightest contact with peanuts or peanut derivatives, usually peanut oil, could be fatal. To what lengths must the food service go to accommodate the child? Is it sufficient for the school food service to merely avoid obvious foods, such as peanut butter, or must school food service staff research every ingredient and additive in processed foods or regularly post all of the ingredients used in recipes?

    Response: The school has the responsibility to provide a safe, non-allergic meal to the child if it is determined that the condition is disabling. To do so, school food service staff must make sure that all food items offered to the allergic child meet prescribed guidelines and are free of foods which are suspected of causing the allergic reaction. This means that the food labels or specifications will need to be checked to ensure that they do not contain traces of such substances. In some cases, the labels will provide enough information to make a reasonable judgment possible. If they do not provide enough information, it is the responsibility of the school food service to obtain the necessary information to ensure that no allergic substances are present in the foods served. In some cases, it may be necessary to contact the supplier or the manufacturer or to check with the State agency. Private organizations, such as the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (see Appendix D), may also be consulted for information and advice. It is also wise to check with parents about certain foods and even provide them with advance copies of menus. The general rule in these situations is to exercise caution at all times. Do not serve foods to children at risk for anaphylactic reactions, if you do not know what is in those foods. It is important to recognize that a child may be provided a meal, which is equivalent to the meal served to other children, but not necessarily the same meal. "

    From Appendix A:
    Meal Substitutions for Medical or Other Special Dietary Reasons
    Child Nutrition Program regulations require participating school food authorities, institutions and sponsors to offer to all participants breakfasts, lunches, suppers, supplements and milk which meet the meal patterns identified in the Program regulations. Departmental regulations further require substitutions to the standard meal patterns for participants who are considered handicapped under 7 CFR Part 15b and whose handicap restricts their diet..."
     
  8. selketine

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  9. kittycatgirl

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    Hi,
    I am also going through this process and it seems hard but worth it. There is a feeling in a public school that 504's should be avoided (by th school system) because of a few reasons. It holds the school system and teachers liable if they don't follow the plan. The school can lose funding by the state. The school can be held legaly responsible not only by you but by the americans with disability act. It is a legal document. Teachers who do not follow the 504 can be held legally responsible and are not protected by the schools insurance or by their contracts.

    My advice is to follow the schools procedure but go in prepared. Don't feel like you are being one of "those parents" because you have to be. It is our job to fight for protection for our children. I had two meetings in June and said this is what I need and what she needs. They tried to work out of the 504 about school field trips mandating a nurse. My daughter needs shots..... they must have a nurse. Be aware of details. It all matters. Hopefully you will get support. If not do everything in your power to go above their heads... but follow the protocal. (sorry can't spell!)
    Good luck!
     
  10. Laura

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    OK Just had the meeting with the principal and my son's teacher. They were great about everything and we are scheduling a meeting for a 504 as soon as they get a nurse (the one for the 14 schools) hired. The only thing that bothered me is they don't feel like it's their responsibility or that they are qualified to count his carbs at lunch for him if he doesn't eat all of his food, even if I write them down for them. They said I need to come in and bolus him. I'm going to have to work on them for that one. I have no idea how they would deal with shots if he needed them at school.
     
  11. selketine

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    Bravo!

    For the requirement that they have to have someone trained to give insulin see 8.9 of the document I referenced earlier: http://web.diabetes.org/Advocacy/legalmaterials/LegalRights/LR-Chap8.pdf

    See 8.16 in that document for info on counting carbs. It seems like they have to provide the carb info. So they can call you with it - and your child is pumping right? You can tell them how much insulin to give. I mean they should be able to figure it out but you could double check with them.

    I'm pretty positive that they cannot require you to come in and administer insulin in a public school K-12. You might want to call the ADA and discuss it with their legal advocacy folks. Crystal Jackson who works there is very good resource and there are probably others.

    As for waiting until they get a nurse to schedule the 504 - I'm not sure if that is a good thing. Could it be possible school will start and they haven't hired the nurse yet? There has to be someone supervising the nurse they are going to hire - they can send that person to the 504 meeting. I think I would want to make sure things are in place ASAP and not use the "hire the nurse" thing to drag the 504 later into the school year. Their lack of a nurse is not a reason for the meeting to be delayed.

    So the meeting is to determine eligibility or ?
     
  12. Laura

    Laura Approved members

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    He said he thinks the 504 is a good idea and with all of my son's health issues I don't think he could have argued much. School starts here in 6 days! If there isn't someone ready to help with this plan by the end of the first week I am going to start calling people who are higher up.
     

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