Saturday, January 24, 2009

Does the "All Children Must Be Potty Trained Before Attending School" Law Effect a Medically Incontinent Child?

“All children must be potty trained before attending school,” is the law. These are not the exact words, but nonetheless, it is the law. Then you may ask yourself, “What if my child has a medical problem? What if he is incontinent?” Don’t worry about it because in those cases, that law des not apply. Here is the procedure that you must follow to protect yourself and your child in the school system.

First, go to the doctor. If the incontinence is unknown, such as your child suddenly having problems, it is best to get to the bottom of it. But until you do, your child might need diapers for a time, depending on the severity of the issue at hand. If this is the case, have the doctor write you a note stating that there is a medical condition present and that absorbent protection is needed until the problem is found and solved. If you already know what the problem is, such as an overactive bladder, intestinal issues, or an undeveloped urinary tract, then have the doctor write a note stating that there is a permanent medical condition and that the need for diapers is permanent and absolute. It will be vital to emphasize that there is no cure so they will not harass you or your child. The note must also say that he is to go to the nurse for diaper changes. This way, he will not face trouble from any of the staff at the school since some like to give children and parents a tough way to go. Make sure the doctor does not miss a single detail in the note. All details need to be included for your protection.

Once you’ve obtained a medical note, you’ll need to give a copy to the nurse, the principle, and any staff that works with your child. Then, sit down and have a talk with the principle and the nurse. Don’t talk with just one. They both need to be present. You’ll need to discuss incontinence management and how things will be handled. Talk to the nurse about your child coming to her office for diaper changes. This way, it is being handled by a trained professional, and the state cannot be fined.

Don’t let them tell you it is not possible because it is. When a student is incontinent, no matter the age, he must go to the nurse for every diaper change. He is not to change his own diapers. It is policy since they are obligated to follow certain sanitation codes for state institutions. If they out right refuse, then the civil rights of your child have been violated, and you have a case under the American with Disabilities Act. An incontinent child has the right to attend a normal school and normal classes just as his peers. Don’t let them tell you any different.

So, parents, there is no need to worry. Now that you’ve been informed, take the necessary steps to ensure you and your child are protected.

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