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(Quad Cities Online)   School refuses to allow an epileptic 8 year-old girl's service dog to accompany her in class because "it could be a distraction" to other children and one teacher complained. So let's put her life at risk   (qconline.com) divider line 219
    More: Fail, Kellsey McGuire, Sherrard School District, Illinois State Board of Education, service dog, John Major, dispute  
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7161 clicks; posted to Main » on 01 Jun 2014 at 12:24 PM (34 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



219 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-06-01 10:34:27 AM  
Of course this is likely a violation of the ADA and the school's going to lose hard, but really, her life is at risk? From the article:
While 8-year-old Kellsey McGuire sleeps at night, her service dog and best friend, Jasper, watches and listens for any signs of the seizures that plague her. "He's very important to my daughter," said Kellsey's mother, Brandi McGuire. "Jasper can sense anxiety. If Kelsey's eyes open at night, he's trained to get us."

When she's in class, there's a teacher right there who can fulfill the same function. She's arguably safer there than she is at night, when the dog has to go to another room and wake the parents.
 
jbc [TotalFark]
2014-06-01 10:43:52 AM  
It's too bad they can't come to an agreement, then shake on it.
 
2014-06-01 10:45:56 AM  
I must read too much Fark. It's gotten to the point to me that if if were to meet someone for the first time, then found out they were running for the school board I'd immediately think they were a controlling douche.
 
2014-06-01 10:55:37 AM  

rwhamann: I must read too much Fark. It's gotten to the point to me that if if were to meet someone for the first time, then found out they were running for the school board I'd immediately think they were a controlling douche.


Well, if you were going to bet money, that might be the way to go.
 
2014-06-01 10:56:41 AM  

Theaetetus: Of course this is likely a violation of the ADA and the school's going to lose hard, but really, her life is at risk? From the article:
While 8-year-old Kellsey McGuire sleeps at night, her service dog and best friend, Jasper, watches and listens for any signs of the seizures that plague her. "He's very important to my daughter," said Kellsey's mother, Brandi McGuire. "Jasper can sense anxiety. If Kelsey's eyes open at night, he's trained to get us."

When she's in class, there's a teacher right there who can fulfill the same function. She's arguably safer there than she is at night, when the dog has to go to another room and wake the parents.


To be fair, the dog can probably detect her troubles considerably sooner.  I don't know how much that helps, and I doubt the kid's life is at stake, but having a dog around shouldn't send a class into anarchy.
 
2014-06-01 11:02:09 AM  
Seizure detection dogs usually give enough warning about an oncoming event to give the person time to be in a safe place. To get on the floor to prevent falls, maybe to leave the room so as not to terrify the other children. They are very cool animals
 
2014-06-01 11:03:40 AM  
The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2014-06-01 11:04:05 AM  

Relatively Obscure: rwhamann: I must read too much Fark. It's gotten to the point to me that if if were to meet someone for the first time, then found out they were running for the school board I'd immediately think they were a controlling douche.


Well, if you were going to bet money, that might would be the way to go.

 
2014-06-01 11:09:28 AM  
Too bad there isn't an epileptic sensor she could wear.

/Introducing the Fitbit Fit Mitt.
 
2014-06-01 11:18:20 AM  
And an epileptic seizure isn't a distrction?

You know what else is a distraction?  Having every instance of the word "dog" highlighted in the article.  Thanks subby!  :)
 
2014-06-01 11:20:50 AM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Because Think of the Children, and a teacher complained.

/only other explanation would be Zero Tolerance and the dog can trigger a peanut allergy
 
2014-06-01 11:32:46 AM  
And since this is an epilepsy thread
images-mediawiki-sites.thefullwiki.org


Oops, sorry, I should have warned people first.
 
MBK [TotalFark]
2014-06-01 11:36:59 AM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Because someone complained.

And someone on the school board has a power itch to scratch.
 
2014-06-01 12:06:24 PM  
One thing that everyone is overlooking is that the link has search terms "service" and "dog" in it.

Subby went looking for service dog stories to troll about.
 
2014-06-01 12:07:27 PM  

Snarfangel: And since this is an epilepsy thread
[images-mediawiki-sites.thefullwiki.org image 691x294]


Oops, sorry, I should have warned people first.


37.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-06-01 12:19:52 PM  
How about a service cat

hellogiggles.com
 
2014-06-01 12:26:55 PM  

jbc: It's too bad they can't come to an agreement, then shake on it.


Heh...
 
2014-06-01 12:27:14 PM  
If the other children are distracted, transfer them to a different classroom. If the teacher has an issue let them sit out the year or so that they would have this child in their class and let a substitute get some hours in. Everybody's taken care of, problem solved!

/teacher in a classroom of 20 or more isn't going to be spending too much time worrying about whether one student is about to have a seizure or not
 
2014-06-01 12:28:22 PM  
dl.dropboxusercontent.com
 
2014-06-01 12:30:18 PM  

Radak: And an epileptic seizure isn't a distrction?


The dog doesn't prevent them.

I mean, what were you imagening the dog would do?
 
2014-06-01 12:30:51 PM  
My high scool history teacher was blind. His dog was never a  distraction.
 
2014-06-01 12:32:07 PM  

Relatively Obscure: To be fair, the dog can probably detect her troubles considerably sooner. I don't know how much that helps, and I doubt the kid's life is at stake, but having a dog around shouldn't send a class into anarchy


Except for that whole : "When Kellsey stops breathing, Jasper is our furry angel" thing.  Grand mal seizures can absolutely be life-threatening in multiple ways.
 
2014-06-01 12:32:12 PM  
She should sign up at a charter/private school.  I hear they really like having kids with problems, and taking care of students comes first not money.
 
2014-06-01 12:33:47 PM  

spawn73: The dog doesn't prevent them.


i1.ytimg.com

If it was Wonder Kipper the Super Dog, he would.
 
2014-06-01 12:34:13 PM  
Um, I'm pretty sure not allowing her to bring her dog is against the law.
 
2014-06-01 12:34:50 PM  

Theaetetus: When she's in class, there's a teacher right there who can fulfill the same function. She's arguably safer there than she is at night, when the dog has to go to another room and wake the parents.


I disagree. When an 18 year old high school senior who is a month out of being certified as an CFR can recognize a seizure better than a ten year-veteran special education teacher who's yelling at a slumped over kid to pay attention, you lose faith in humanity in general.

Many seizures occur as absence or partial seizures which do not present with the dramatic tonic-clonic movement that is stereotypical for epileptic/seizure conditions. These are the children who get seizure dogs.
 
2014-06-01 12:38:08 PM  

"I HATE Epiliptic Service Dogs!"


d2tq98mqfjyz2l.cloudfront.net

 
2014-06-01 12:39:13 PM  

spawn73: Radak: And an epileptic seizure isn't a distrction?

The dog doesn't prevent them.

I mean, what were you imagening the dog would do?


CPR apparently.  Like a furry angel.

donthugcacti.com
 
2014-06-01 12:41:25 PM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Really? I've never seen that in the text of the ADA. The ADA only says that an organization has to provide reasonable accommodations. Despite all the Fark Outrage (tm) this is a difficult case. I'm not confident a service dog in the classroom is a reasonable accommodation for epilepsy. Epilepsy and blindness are two different disabilities. If the school has one reasonable accommodation and the person with a disability has a different reasonable accommodation, the school wins. That's also how the ADA works.
 
2014-06-01 12:41:39 PM  

Snarfangel: And since this is an epilepsy thread



Oops, sorry, I should have warned people first.


Thanks! Just got done flopping like a fish.
 
2014-06-01 12:41:49 PM  

vincentfox: She should sign up at a charter/private school.  I hear they really like having kids with problems, and taking care of students comes first not money.

 
2014-06-01 12:41:53 PM  

vincentfox: She should sign up at a charter/private school.  I hear they really like having kids with problems, and taking care of students comes first not money.


Forget to pay your bill at a private school and you'll see if student's needs or money comes first.
 
2014-06-01 12:42:21 PM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Not quite. IDEIA says if the dog is required by the kid's IEP as a "reasonable accommodation", it's a done deal and the school must allow it. End of story. If the dog isn't explicitly listed in the IEP, then the school can claim (if they're prepared to back this in court if necessary) that the dog is a disruptive influence and/or not a "reasonable accommodation".
 
2014-06-01 12:42:22 PM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Obviously, they're training their lawyers on how to deal with the school performing suicidal legal stunts.

jaylectricity: One thing that everyone is overlooking is that the link has search terms "service" and "dog" in it.

Subby went looking for service dog stories to troll about.


...So? What, we can't search for stories to submit now? What are you going on about?
 
2014-06-01 12:42:57 PM  
Damnit,try this again..TFA says she's in a catholic school now, doing much better.

vincentfox: She should sign up at a charter/private school.  I hear they really like having kids with problems, and taking care of students comes first not money.

 
2014-06-01 12:43:18 PM  
What's that, Lassie?  Fuggit.
 
2014-06-01 12:44:27 PM  

worlddan: Really? I've never seen that in the text of the ADA. The ADA only says that an organization has to provide reasonable accommodations. Despite all the Fark Outrage (tm) this is a difficult case. I'm not confident a service dog in the classroom is a reasonable accommodation for epilepsy. Epilepsy and blindness are two different disabilities. If the school has one reasonable accommodation and the person with a disability has a different reasonable accommodation, the school wins. That's also how the ADA works.


The ADA is very specific about service dogs. It allows hospitals to refuse to allow them into rooms where a reasonable level of asepsis and sterility must be maintained (i.e. ORs or ICU settings), or private businesses and industry that maintain a high level of asepsis - such as food preparation areas. Those are quite literally the only reasons a medical service dog can be refused or asked to leave, unless the dog is violent or uncontrollable. Which, knowing someone who uses and trains them, is unlikely.
 
2014-06-01 12:47:36 PM  
If I was a completely pragmatic asshole about this, I'd ask why are we spending money on her education if she'll die the minute she is separated from her service dog? Send her home where the sheltered snowflake can get instant attention when she has the inevitable seizures, ultimately succumbing to them.

/Seriously, though, the school should let her have the dog if it helps her minimize the problems associated with having seizures.
 
2014-06-01 12:48:00 PM  
Of course children who need service animals should be able to take them to school.  Of course.

...but maybe, if a dog is the only thing standing between you and death, you should die.
 
2014-06-01 12:49:48 PM  

Somacandra: Except for that whole : "When Kellsey stops breathing, Jasper is our furry angel" thing. Grand mal seizures can absolutely be life-threatening in multiple ways.


I'm familiar.  The dog won't be doing CPR.  That part, I'm sure the people will have to handle, either way.  Anyway, I don't see why the dog would/should be a problem.
 
2014-06-01 12:50:42 PM  
Couldn't they use this as a teaching moment to clue the kids into how to behave around a service animal?  Might only take an hour of the girl talking about the dog, how he's not a pet when he's working, how to not pet or play with him unless she allows it, etc.  Then, after that, enforce that rule with the other kids and life and classwork go on unchanged.

Or, you know, freak out and break a federal law then spend thousand of bucks defending your stupid decision.
 
2014-06-01 12:51:10 PM  

LesserEvil: Send her home where the sheltered snowflake can get instant attention when she has the inevitable seizures, ultimately succumbing to them.


Yeah, but then you end up with this:

www.bbc.co.uk

Nobody wants that.
 
2014-06-01 12:51:34 PM  

Gwendolyn: The ADA says service dogs can go anywhere with their humans. I'm not sure why the school feels that does not apply to them?


Because there are medical professionals at elementary schools that can help during an epileptic seizure, rather than relying on a dog.

Yes, a dog in a classroom full of children would be a distraction.  No, having an epileptic seizure is not putting her life at risk (most kids have them 30-40 times a day when they have epilepsy).

Maybe the school would rather the child use cannabis oil in class to quell the seizures?  Its something that has actually been proven to make a difference when it comes to saving lives from epilepsy.
 
2014-06-01 12:52:46 PM  
Like epileptic fits aren't distracting.

That said, how the heck is a dog going to prevent one?
 
2014-06-01 12:52:52 PM  
This distraction to other students has always been pure crap.  Its a bullshiat way for teacher and admins to push the blame for something they don't want onto the student population.

All the local schools around here pretty much mandate uniforms, which includes not having hair too long for boys, limited piercings for all, 'natural' hair colors only and other stuff. Because all of this is a distractions for the students allegedly.

The sole exception is the top performing magnet school in the area.  No uniform is required.  There are many kids running around with various shades of neon hair.  Many have multiple ear piercings and a few have gauges.  The result?  The kids don't give a flying fark.  The only distractions come about when the teachers or admins decide to make a big deal about something.
 
2014-06-01 12:53:13 PM  

Theaetetus: When she's in class, there's a teacher right there who can fulfill the same function.


The teacher has to attend to the entire class and may not notice a problem until a seizure is in progress. Plus, as other people have mentioned, the dog is likely more attuned to subtle clues that the teacher would not be aware of even under the best circumstances.

Bottom line is if it's a service dog used under the recommendation of a medical professional the school should accommodate. The kids will learn to cope and after a few days the dog will become part of the background. If the teacher has a documented medical or psychological issue with dogs (and the article isn't clear if it's even the kid's assigned teacher or some other staff member), offer to switch them to a different class or school.
 
2014-06-01 12:53:49 PM  

maxheck: That said, how the heck is a dog going to prevent one?


Doesn't.  Just gives you an early warning and/or lets people know something's up.
 
2014-06-01 12:53:52 PM  
Thought this was nuts to begin with, school's non-compliance with ADA.  Type just below where commenter said girl in Catholic school now, doing better, surely w svc dog.
Also FangQ to Because People in Power Are Stupid (mis-copied slightly) for service cat & Unauthorized Finger for epileptic svc dogs .gifs, saved & hope to fetch to Caturday just for the halibut.
 
2014-06-01 12:55:41 PM  

wingnut396: This distraction to other students has always been pure crap. Its a bullshiat way for teacher and admins to push the blame for something they don't want onto the student population.


Admins, mainly, and perhaps, but it's one that has plenty of precedent in US courts. It's the law of the land.
 
2014-06-01 12:55:46 PM  

maxheck: Like epileptic fits aren't distracting.

That said, how the heck is a dog going to prevent one?


You don't want to know.   It's visceral.
 
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