Boston Legal

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 7:50am
Bootsy's picture
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Looks like they are doing a segmant on tonights show on nut allergy - the firm is defending a school teacher charged with the wrongful death of one of her students who has had an allergic reaction to nuts. The episode is called "Nuts".
The show usually does a good job of covering all sides of an issue - should be interesting. Here is a link to Boston Legal website re tonight's show. [url="http://abc.go.com/primetime/bostonlegal/preview.html"]http://abc.go.com/primetime/bostonlegal/preview.html[/url]

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 9:17am
Kathy L.'s picture
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Joined: 07/30/1999 - 09:00

Oh boy. I hope this is well done. It could be fuel for the "not my responsibility" crowd. It probably, however, will turn out to have some sort of unanticipated side story.

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 12:24pm
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I am watching the show as I write. So far, it is doing a good job of emphasizing the humanity of the teacher and the sudden, random nature of the allergic death. The parents'grief is overwhelming and they are suing to send a message to all teachers. I am signing off the computer now but it my hope that the show will end with forgiveness and understanding on the part of the parents and teacher. It seems to be headed that way. We'll see...

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 1:30pm
Jenna's picture
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Joined: 07/09/2000 - 09:00

How disappointing. Now I remember why I never watch this show.

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 1:40pm
PennMom's picture
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I was very disappointed to see the ending argument- that because the parents were wealthy they should have put their child in a private school due to lower teacher to student ratio or hired (themselves, not the school) a "shadow nurse" to follow their child. I imagine there aren't too many parents who can afford a "shadow nurse" or a lot of the private schools. They put the blame on the parents in the argument for not doing all they could do to keep their son safe.

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 9:41pm
Kathy L.'s picture
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Joined: 07/30/1999 - 09:00

Well, they threw a wrench into the cake - the fact that the teacher was talking on her cell phone with her father's hospital while he was dying, that she was such a dedicated teacher, she didn't take the time off to be with him when he died. This was to make it less "cut and dry" for the viewers. The good thing about the story is that they did highlight how quickly anaphylaxis can kill, and this isn't some "made up" condition.
Did anyone notice the name of the child that died? Nathaniel.

Posted on: Tue, 01/16/2007 - 11:18pm
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Joined: 03/12/2004 - 09:00

I've never watched the show before. I was kind of impressed in the beginning, it almost felt like a public service announcement for peanut allergies to me. And then the end came and the blame got shifted to the parents. Yuck!
I think we've all heard enough stories about private schools to know they're not necessarily a "solution" either. No matter where we send our kids, we have to place our trust in the teacher, and we can do all the prep work in the world, but there are still no guarantees.
I'm curious how a person with no food allergies would view the episode. Meg

Posted on: Wed, 01/17/2007 - 3:14am
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krc
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Joined: 01/16/2007 - 09:00

I really wish I would have seen this episode. Does anyone know if there is a way to view it online?

Posted on: Wed, 01/17/2007 - 3:33am
Jenna's picture
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There is a discussion regarding this show on the Boston Legal website-- 2 different topics on the message board.

Posted on: Wed, 01/17/2007 - 4:39am
Ethan Mom's picture
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Joined: 03/27/2006 - 09:00

I watched this episode with great interest, as I am both a mother to a PA preschooler and a (former) litigation attorney. As an attorney, I think the Boston Legal team presented a zealous defense for the teacher; such zealous representation for your client is required by the Bar Association's code of ethics. As a mother, the episode made me furious, then it made me cry, and then later, I could not fall asleep as I reflected on the signficance of my son's allergy.
I dropped my son off at preschool this morning for his first day back after his first serious allergic reaction which required his Epipen and hospital treatment. He reacted to Kashi oatmeal, which did not list nuts anywhere on the ingredient panel and we are now exploring (I have been posting up a storm the past couple days: I am not sure how to link but my 2 other posts are on the Main Discussion Board) so I presume he reacted to trace amounts.
As I was dropping him off, I noticed one of the teachers who works in my son's classroom eating nutty chocolates from a box in the supply cabinet. SHe was eating this in the middle of the classroom, despite the fact the school has a nut-free policy! I have spent HOURS educating these teachers and was absolutely floored. I asked that the chocolates be put away and removed from the class. She acted upset and I debated pulling my son out of school that minute.
Apologies for rambling, but this episode coupled with this morning really struck fear into my heart for my son, whereas before I had felt pretty comfortable with his care at school.
One another note - HERE IS ONE OF THE POSTS FROM THE BOSTON LEGAL WEBSITE:
Unspecified poster: I am a Mom to a PA DD 6 years old. I have spent the last 5 months meeting and working with my school to ensure my DD's safety at school, in addition to her progress in class. We are not a family of "means" like the family in your episode. We cannot afford a shadow nurse or private school. We rely on the cooperation of the school principal, nurse, councelor and teacher to keep our child safe in school. They make a commitment to parents of special needs students, that their individual needs will be meet. This includes their health. It is a commitment we received from all involved in our DD's school day. I watched your episode and was very disappointed that the teacher, who made that same commitment to the on air parents, to keep their child safe in school, and did not. She should have been found liable in part because of that commitment. If she felt she could not handle that obligation, she should have stated that at the start of the school year and the child assigned to another teacher who would take that responsibility seriously. A point of note, Epi Pens are NEVER to be kept in a locked cabinet. They must be readily and immediately accessible given the time sensitivity to the reaction that can and does occur. In the state of Massachusetts, where BL takes place, the Commissioner of Education in the Fall of 2002 issued a published report to all Superintendents and other interested parties, with a guide to "Managing Life Threatening Food Allergies in Schools". Your researchers should have done their research and noted that schools do have an obligation to "provide students with life-threatening food allergies with a quality education in a safe environment". If teachers do not want this responsibility, then I'm sorry, find another career. Today's teachers are more than simply educators, they are safekeepers of our children while our children are in their care during the course of a school day.
Message was edited by: indymom23Re: Peanut Episode 1/16/07
reply Posted: Jan 17 @ 08:16 AM
by: 30something_no_longer (51 Posts in the last 90 days) Registered: Jan 01, 2007
I see where you're coming from, but ultimately the responsibility for the kid(s) lies with the parents. Regardless of their "means." I have a first-grader with a health issue (not an allergy--but it is something that requires periodic attention) and I told the teacher on the first day that I take sole responsibility. And I do, I'm there on a regular basis because I don't think it's fair to dump that on the teacher, in addition to dealing with all the other kids. I realize that it's easier for someone like me who lives a half-mile from the school, plus I don't have the demands of a job or any small children at home (anymore ), but even if I did you can be sure that the health and well-being of my child would come FIRST. No question about it. Because as we saw in the episode last night, there are no do-overs. Placing blame on the teacher--or anyone else--after the fact, does not bring the child back.

Posted on: Wed, 01/17/2007 - 5:48am
Going Nuts's picture
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I'd never seen it before, and watched last night for the first time.
I didn't feel as negatively as most of you. Frankly, I thought they presented a realistic view of what life is like in a classroom of 30+ kids; it's not realistic to think that every item in every lunch box is going to be seen. It was also realistic in the sense that, as many of us already know, a nut-free policy, notes home, etc. don't guarantee a nut-free room. People mess up. In real life, things happen. Instead of being on her cell phone, she could have been attending to a sick or injured student, or called to the door by a fellow staff member. These things happen all the time. How many of us think our childrens' teachers eyes are locked on them every second they're in the classroom?
It also showed how quickly it can happen - and that was a good thing. I think it also pointed out nicely how essential time is.
Of course I wanted to shout at the TV, "Why was the epipen in a locked cabinet?". And of course I didn't like seeing the blame being turned on the parents, but after all, this is a legal drama.
Overall, I think it was just fine. Anything that can raise awareness is OK by me.
Amy

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