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[IP] Ryan's suspension
This is what I sent to 10 persons in the administration.
To whom it may concern,
I am a member of Parents of Children with Diabetes. And a father of a 9
year old diabetic, who carries all of her supplies with her at all times.
I am aware of some of the facts of Ryan Wellhoefer's predicament.
As I understand them, your policies regarding the possession and use of
diabetes related paraphernalia are inappropriate. A more appropriate
policy would be to encourage those afflicted with this devastating and
debilitating disease to intensify their efforts to control it, not to
thwart those efforts by stripping them of the very tools they need to cope
with the disability.
How can you justify a suspension for his act, while many other schools
allow such behavior and, in fact, reward it? Please re-evaluate. You have
done an injustice to Ryan. You have the ability to correct it.
Also, you should be aware that diabetes is a protected disability under the
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). My, somewhat studied, opinion is
that removing disabled students from the regular classroom, unnecessarily,
is a violation of this act. The law requires you to allow full
participation in all programs. This includes class time. In my opinion,
forcing students to leave the classroom to administer care for their
disability constitutes removal from the classroom and would be considered a
violation. Confiscating diabetic supplies is equivalent to confiscating
Any argument that the needles are dangerous to others is untenable. Check
the classroom for push-pins, staples, e.t.c.. They are just as dangerous
as unused insulin syringes and lancets.
While you may be able and responsible to require proper disposal/storage of
used needles and sharps, you will find it quite difficult to condemn blood
glucose testing in the classroom. A careful evaluation of the OSHA
standards, (I know you are not beholding to them) will show that the waste,
other than sharps, from such a test is in no way considered biohazard
material. The sharps can be stored in the lancet device and kit (meeting
OSHA standards) or a sharps container can be supplied to the classroom.
That would be considered an accommodation.
For Ryan Wellhoefer's sake and the school districts, you must reconsider
your harsh, close minded, and inappropriate actions and policies.
1563 Peacock Ave
Sunnyvale, Ca. 94087
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