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Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 3:16am
Krusty Krab's picture
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Joined: 04/20/2007 - 09:00

Hark! Hang on to ye cupcake all ye teachers, 'tis a blessed thing and above ye student's safety.
Oh, fhagettit.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 3:25am
Krusty Krab's picture
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Quote: Ms. Amy Garcia, RN, MSN
NASN Executive Director
8484 Georgia Avenue
Suite 420
Silver Springs, MD 20910
Dear Ms. Garcia:
My name is XXX, and I

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 4:04am
SkyMom's picture
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Once again Krusty you have added very logical, imperative comments for the safety of all students. Stephklem I'm sorry to hear that your support has faltered but hoping the above comments remind you of the issues that arise when a disability is left for others to pick and choose what is discriminatory.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 4:31am
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I'm not dismissing the problem. There is a woeful lack of education and I stand by the letter that I wrote, even though I did write it before I got further education on 504 plans and what they are needed for. And yes. It does make me sad to see the us vs. them attitude. And before you climb back up on your high horse, let me remind you that I have a child with a disability. He has bipolar disorder, and to most people, he seems just like every other child. They don't see the black depressions that he can't pull himself up from. They don't hear him say that he wishes he was dead so he wouldn't have to suffer anymore. They also don't see the rages and destruction. So perhaps the threat of death isn't as prevalent in his every day, but let me tell you, the fear of him taking his own life is in the back of my mind constantly. And I have most certainly been at the receiving end of the looks and holier than thou attitudes, from the people who tell me that it's the way I parent, or my unwillingness to set boundaries. I've heard it all. I belong to a board for parents with bipolar children, and most of us have received that kind of attitude. I plow in with a smile, and educate, educate, educate. I don't demand anything. I ask and we collaborate. We talk it out until we all reach an understanding. It does not serve anyone, educator or parent, to have a contentious relationship. We all need to work together for the benefit of the kids who are at risk.
I feel for every one of the children who live with these allergies, and as I said, I stand by the letter I wrote.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 4:34am
stephklem's picture
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Name of attorneys:
Drummond and Woodsum, they are in NH. Please feel free to contact them, they can most certainly clarify what they stated in their presentation

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 5:02am
stephklem's picture
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[b]An IHP plan says 'Johnny's class is doing a peanut butter craft today, your child will be out in the hallway while we do it. See what we're doing for him? [i]He's safe[/i].' A 504 plan says 'Johnny standing out in the hallway is not OK. He may be safe, but he's being [i]discrimated against [/i]because he has a food allergy. We don't allow diabetics to stand in the hallway, or gay people, or people of a different color. Why would we allow 'disabled person' to stand in the hall. How can we make this environment safe so that Johnny is not [i][b]discriminated against[/b][/i], so that Johnny can participate safely in his education.'[/b]
An IHP can make the exact same accomodations as a 504. One of the food allergic children in our school was on an IHP prior to his mom requesting a 504 (this was the first FA child in our school when I became nurse). His 504 is identical to the IHP. Everybody was educated in the school with the IHP. Everybody in the school is educated under the 504. No difference.
I cannot even pretend to know what it is like to have a child with food allergies. I just know that I do the best I can, the staff I work with does the best that they can, and the school nurses I know do the best that they can. I also get that there are problems sometimes. I realize from reading here that some of you are up against some idiots. But we aren't all that way and sometimes, reading some of this stuff, makes me feel as though I am the enemy, simply because I work for the school system.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 5:26am
nutty1's picture
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Joined: 02/24/2008 - 12:46

This whole 504 issue gets very heated among these boards! My son is 5 and will be going to kindergarten in a year. I have to say that I am not looking forward to making the decision about whether or not to do a 504. Right now we are just working through daycare issues and keeping him safe there. I brought up the idea of a 504 with out allergist in the context of 'why do people get them" type of thing. He replied that it is "over-reactive parents, I have a few parents that insist on these 504's and they are not necessary". He also told me that it is ok to give my PA child 'may contains/shared on equipment' foods because according to him, "these companies are just trying to cover their butts by putting these labels on foods". Needless to say, I take what our allergist says with a grain of salt. I am getting side tracked here... I am just saying that the whole 504 plan issue I have very mixed feelings about. I have called the gradeschool where my child will be going and have spoken with the school nurse. I know that since my child has PA, his classroom will be peanut-free, and they have a peanut-free table in the cafeteria. Compared with what I am dealing with now, that sounds great, and I think maybe a 504 is unnecessary. What I deal with now is my son is in a daycare that is not peanut-free, and my son is their first peanut-free child they have ever had. I trained them on use of epi-pen, sx's, we have an allergy plan etc., and so far so good. I really am not looking forward to the 504 decision, but I appreciate all the perspectives people have on it from these boards.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 7:18am
Krusty Krab's picture
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[b]I plow in with a smile, and educate, educate, educate. I don't demand anything. I ask and we collaborate. We talk it out until we all reach an understanding. It does not serve anyone, educator or parent, to have a contentious relationship. We all need to work together for the benefit of the kids who are at risk.[/b]
Oh see you've got me all wrong. You're under the impression, given my passion for the subject, that I waltzed into our school and with no tact, demanded this or that with little regard for who I knocked over on the way in. No no no, if you walk into my school, they will be the first to tell you that I am a thoughtful advocate versed in the ways of compromise. But I'm smart enough to see the system for what it is and understand the thought process of others who view this issue from a liability point of view.
[b]I have to reply to this, having just come from a conference about 504's. The attorneys that held the conference are experts in the 504 and disability area, which was why our district hired them.[/b]
I don't call them experts and I bet your school district is [i]thrilled[/i] with their new 'lawyers'. There are prosecutors and there are defense attorneys -- your district hired defense attorneys, isn't that a bit telling? Do you understand why this is? I'm not sure you realize the huge step backwards this will do for children with life threatening food allergies. What a sad day for those families in your district.
So what will you do now? Will you advocate for 504's for those seeking them? Or will you fall in line? Maybe you now have no choice.

Posted on: Wed, 05/14/2008 - 12:11pm
stephklem's picture
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I will always give a 504 to a parent who really feels that they need one. As I said, I don't put anything different into a 504 than I would put into an IHP, but if they feel more comfortable with a 504, that is what I do.
Yes, you are definitely passionate, Krusty, and I do admire the fact that you are such an avid advocate. I know what it is like to have to advocate for your child, and I am not just talking about my oldest, I've had to do it in different situations for each of my kids. That's what parents do.
As far as our district hiring defense attorneys, well, what can I say? They still seemed to know what they were talking about.

Posted on: Thu, 05/15/2008 - 12:07am
Krusty Krab's picture
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[b]They still seemed to know what they were talking about.[/b]
"Seemed to" is the dangerous part here. My feeling is that they have told you what they wanted you to internalize, what is in line with the school district. Now my concern is that where you are still willing to do a 504 for a family who seeks one, you will suddenly find opposition within your own team. Because you see, granting a 504 only happens after an evaluation. And I assume if the school is following correct procedures, there is more than one person who deems a child as eligible. Call me crazy, but with the recent hirings by your district, the other administation that makes up that eligibility team, will suddenly feel emboldened to say (heck, maybe even [i]told[/i] to say) "No, 504's aren't for food allergies, because breathing isn't affected all day long." When a school hires lawyers, they're trying to [i]reduce[/i] liability, and will fight like hell to prevent gaining it.
I'm worried about the place you may one day find yourself in and how sad that will be for you. I believe you care greatly about your students, but can just see this coming. The day when you sit across the table from a family who's just be told no, 504's aren't for food allergies....even when the US Dept of Education feels so, even though the USDA feels so, AAAAI, FAAN, on and on ....and plenty of elementary schools, the day when your school decides they just don't want to be held legally accountable.

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