From Glen Burnie, Maryland, USA:
My granddaughter attends a public school, and supposedly we have a 504 plan in place, but I think her teacher needs lessons on how to deal a child who has diabetes. One afternoon last week (after lunch, and before snack), she told the teacher she did not feel well, the teacher let her go to the nurse alone, and another teacher, who happened to be coming down the hall, found my granddaughter sitting on the floor. Knowing she has diabetes, the teacher got the nurse, and they took her glucose reading which was 40 mg/dl [2.2 mmol/L]! My granddaughter said she was very tired, the nurse gave her orange juice and peanut butter crackers, and then she was felt better. When she had lunch at 12:00 noon, her glucose level was 350 mg/dl [19.4 mmol/L], and she ate 45 grams of carb for lunch. What would make her drop so low in such a short space of time?
Is there any proof that schoolwork is affected when a child has diabetes? She was doing so well before diagnosis, and is now struggling with first grade assignments. She also has a teacher who tends to ignore her in class. When she raises her hand to get her snack, the teacher has made a comment to her, "What is more important? Your eating or my teaching?" I think she needs lessons on how to deal with a diabetic child.
Children that may be low should not be sent alone to a nurse's office. That is a very dangerous situation which has contributed to many children having severe low blood sugars requiring care from an ambulance. They should have a snack available in the classroom and be allowed to test their blood sugar. I agree that this is a common problem with schools and should be addressed.
Your granddaughter's physician or diabetes educator may have the appropriate resources to intervene with the school as all too often, complaints from parents (or grandparents) fall on deaf ears when dealing with many schools.
Original posting 29 Mar 2003
Posted to School and Daycare
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:42
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