For the thousands of teenagers across the country who have diabetes, many are able to self-manage their diabetes care at school with no problems. Lance Paoli, of Maumelle, Arkansas, was one of those students. He had been successfully handling his own type 1 diabetes care at school for several years.
However, at the beginning of his sophomore year in high school, a new school principal started a policy that no longer allowed students to self-manage their medications or even carry their own medical supplies at school. All medicine had to be kept in the school nurse’s office.
Lance’s mother, Susan, knew that her son’s health would suffer under this new policy.
Susan met with school leaders, but the principal would not change the policy. She filed a complaint with the Pulaski County School District and, around the same time, Lance was also suspended from school for testing his blood glucose level while in class.
So, Susan contacted the American Diabetes Association for help!
She spoke with one of the Association’s Legal Advocates, who gave her information about the legal rights of students who have diabetes, and then she shared this information with the school principal.
The school principal reversed the new policy so students like Lance could once again self-manage their diabetes at school. The principal also dropped Lance’s suspension.
“I am so grateful for all the help I received from the American Diabetes Association’s legal advocate,” said Susan. “Because of this, Lance can continue to be medically safe while at school. Thank you for helping to keep all children with diabetes safe at school!”
The American Diabetes Association leads the effort to prevent and eliminate discrimination against people with diabetes at school, at work and in other parts of daily life. If you need help, call 1-800-DIABETES or visit http://diabetes.org/gethelp.
Through our nationwide Safe at School program, the Association is dedicated to making sure that all children with diabetes are medically safe at school and have the same educational opportunities as their peers. Visit our Safe at School website for information and resources.
Give the gift of fairness — donate now to help people with diabetes facing discrimination, just like Lance: