Protest against Prince William Co. Schools handling of students with diabetes
Several Prince William County parents and kids held a protest at the U.S. Department of Education on Monday.
"It got to the point where Prince William County was going to kill my kid," said Layla Truax. Her 10-year-old daughter Diana Truax has Type 1 Diabetes. Her mom pulled her out of school weeks ago.
"She has three different plans...They aren't following it," said Truax.
Diana's friend, 11-year-old Gavin Verhagen, who also has Type 1 Diabetes, has also been pulled out of school by his mom. Both kids are keeping up with their school work at home, but they miss their friends and teachers and want to go back to school. But only with changes in place.
"And while I'm saving his life, I've been threatened to be sent to jail," said Joni Blue, Gavin's mom. She said she's afraid to take him back to Parkside Middle School after documenting 40 incidents in which she says her son was harmed by poor treatment or no treatment at school.
"He was hospitalized, the pump fell off him, they refused to put it on. A nurse refused to give my son insulin injections," said Blue. She said one time her son's blood sugar was so low, he was unresponsive on the school bus and she had to carry him off.
"[The bus driver] didn't even call 911. She just drove him home," said Blue.
Blue has filed two complaints against Prince William County Schools with the Education Department's office of Civil Rights. The first was closed after PWCS took corrective measures.
The national leader of group called T-1-D Mod Squad that supports mothers of diabetic children flew form California to join the protest.
"People out there don't understand this disease. This disease takes our kids lives. It's a life-threatening disease. It is not Type II Diabetes...Obviously there's a problem when we're have families calling out to us to get these kids back in school," said Rebecca Hata with T-1-D ModSquad.
Hata said while many schools do a great job managing children's Type I diabetes, too many do not and think "they know best instead of the parents."
A spokesman for Prince Williams County Schools said they safeguard the health of students with diabetes by following all Virginia requirements and by adhering closely to the doctor's directives.
Click here for more information about the current regulation issue that WUSA9 received in an email from Prince William County Schools.
The following statement was released from Prince William County Public Schools:
"PWCS safeguards the health of students with diabetes by following all Virginia requirements and by adhering closely to the doctor’s directives in their personal Diabetes Medical Management Plans.
PWCS works closely with parents, still we must always defer to doctors’ orders and legal requirements.
We constantly review our plans, procedures, staff performance, and compliance to make certain that all are serving the health and best interest of every student."
In the interest of full disclosure, the father of the boy featured in our story is a WUSA9 employee in the sales department.