Saturday, October 27, 2012

What Child Gets Priority?

Reader EllenK pointed me to this story:
A California boy has been ordered to transfer to another middle school because he carries the gene for cystic fibrosis, even though he doesn't actually have the incurable, life-threatening and non-infectious disease. His parents have gone to court to fight the move.

Their son, 11-year-old Colman Chadam, was told last week that he’d have to transfer from Jordan Middle School in Palo Alto, Calif., to a school three miles away because he posed a risk to another student at school who does have the disease, according to TODAY.

“I was sad but at the same time I was mad because I understood that I hadn’t done anything wrong,” Colman told TODAY. He added: “It feels like I’m being bullied in a way that is not right.”

An inherited condition, cystic fibrosis causes the body to create a thick mucus that clogs the lungs and can lead to life-threatening lung infections. About 30,000 American adults and children have the disease and patients have an average life expectancy in the late 30s.

While it is not contagious, doctors say people with cystic fibrosis can pose a danger to each other through bacterial cross-contamination if they are in close contact.

“In general, we would prefer that there not be more than one cystic fibrosis patient in a school,” Dr. Thomas Keens, the head of the cystic fibrosis center at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, told TODAY.

The district’s assistant superintendent, Charles Young, told NBC News that officials relied on medical authorities who said “a literal physical distance must be maintained” between patients and that the "zero risk option" was to transfer Colman.
I'm sorry, I'm dizzy because my head is spinning.

Ok, I'm better now.  So I gots to thinking:  if a child has an IEP that says he/she cannot be near anyone he/she doesn't like (say, because of accompanying anger issues), do you transfer all the other kids out of his/her class?  You know a court case could be made out of that....

Absolutely freakin' ridiculous.


Ellen K said...

Welcome to my world. We have a new, and openly liberal, head of SpEd who will leave no stone unturned in what she labels as "support" for her students. That support entails nine different forms per student. Of course SHE doesn't have to fill those out, we do. And if we don't do it, she runs right to the administrators and complains. Oh, and did I mention she's working on a grad degree and off campus at least one afternoon a week? Why is it that I get the feeling we are providing data for her thesis? Oh, and the kid with emotional issues was finally removed, but only after he put said head of SpEd in a headlock. Oh well.

Anonymous said...

There's a better solution; the kid with actual CF can be schooled at home. That will also decrease his exposure to his classmates' viruses and bacteria.