Three families pull diabetic children out of PWC Schools

Another parent of a child with Type One Diabetes has pulled her child out of Prince William County Schools... out of concern for her safety.

PRINCE WILLIAM CO., VA (WUSA9) - Another parent of a child with Type One Diabetes has pulled her child out of Prince William County Schools, out of concern for her safety. 

That makes three families lodging similar complaints about the School system's practices.

Twelve-year-old Gavin Verhagen and his best friend  Diana Truax want desperately to go back to school. 

They both have type one diabetes and have insulin pumps to give them life-sustaining insulin. But both of their mothers pulled them out of school months ago, because they say their lives were at risk.

RELATED: Families accuse PWC Schools of endangering diabetic children

"They failed to put on the pump. But they also weren't following doctor's orders for the emergency plan if the pump was to fall off," said Gavin's mothers Joni Blue.

She her son out of school after the third time he was hospitalized from school. 

"We asked them to get trained so that they could come back," said Blue.

She says the last time she heard back from the school system about Gavin's return was November.

"She stated that in order for them to come back, there would need to be a transition meeting. Since Nov. 23rd, I have emailed weekly asking for this transition meeting and they just ignore us," said Blue. 

Karen Boykin has also pulled her sixth grade daughter Briana out of her Prince William County middle school over care of her type one diabetes.

"We want them to be safe. I want to know that my daughter is safe. If I don't feel that she is safe, and being taken care of properly, then, no, I'm not going to allow her to come in," said Boykin.

Prince William County School's Director of Communications Phil Kavits said he doesn't know why the children are not in school.

"We follow the law in everything we do. We not only follow the law but as the law requires, we follow the requirements and the mandates of the doctors. And, sometimes those can be interpreted differently by different people.  But, the reality is we're looking out for the students, we're looking out for their health, and we want to make sure they stay in school and they get educated," said Kavits.

For the parents, they worry not only about their children falling behind but also for their emotional wellbeing. 

"I made a promise to Gavin that he would try out for basketball. And they took that," Blue said as she choked back tears.

Because of his many absences from school, the sports teams won't allow Gavin to play. 

Legislation that would require schools to properly care for children with Type One Diabetes is making it's way through Virginia's General Assembly. 

Also, to provide full transparency, Gavin's father is a employee of WUSA9. 

(© 2017 WUSA)


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