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debbie_doodles

Time For School....how Do I Choose One?

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My daughter who has celiac is 3 and a half. I want to get her in a preschool in the fall. then next year it will be time for pre-kindergarten and then kindergarten. I am PETRIFIED to put her in a public school. here in Arizona the kindergartens have about 30-35 kids to one teacher. No way could one teacher keep a close enough eye on my daughter. I looked into private schools but they run $350-600/month and we can't pay that. charter schools still have about 25-30 kids with one teacher and one assistant in each classroom. How many parents have school-age children? And are they in public or private schools? Does anyone homeschool their kids until they are older and can watch out better for themselves? Any ideas would be helpful. I'm at my wits end.

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I have never considered not putting my son in the school we had planned for him before he was diagnosed. It's the public school in our neighborhood. Teachers are used to dealing with all sorts of allergies, special needs, etc. Your daughter will be well aware by the time she is ready for kindergarten that she shouldnt eat anything that is not sent from home or approved by mommy. I honestly wouldnt let Celiac have anything to do with your school choice, unless there are other issues that come into your decision as well. (other disabilities, etc). Schools are required to make accomodations for kids with Celiac under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

I hope you find something you are comfortable with!

Annie (teacher and mommy to Jack) :)

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We researched public schools in the area. We bought a house in the preffered school district, and it was a nightmare! The No Child Left behind law is a loophole nightmare. The lunchroom setting is a gluten mess. My children know what they can and can not eat and cross contamination was a major issue. Behaviour problems because of some children being bored staying at the classroom pace and other children with special needs being "mainstreamed" when they need and deserve more attention is another problem we encountered. (FYI a "special needs" child, who will never be identified as such, will not be punished (for lack of a better word) for any type of unappropriate behavior if they do not understand what they have done is wrong.) {Don't believe me? Read the Law.}

If you want to go to a private school, start doing your research and get in contact with those schools. There are scholarships available. They may even let you donate your time to earn credit hours for tuition.

Homeschooling is becoming very popular. I will try and dig up my notes and web site addresses for you. In our state churches have become "MASTER" program sites for homeschoolers. They work as a meeting place for the children and hire professionals for areas of study and trade teaching resources with each other. (Interesting enough- I contacted this group because of Celiac. I think at least 8 of the children have Celiac and chose homeschooling partly because of the gluten free diet. They helped me start the gluten free diet and invited me to join the co-op. The co-op has an abundance of gluten free product lines and they steared me toward the better tasting foods.)

Good luck with your decision.

Laura

You might want to try www.greatschools.net

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With a public school i would suggest a 504 plan, this alerts the teacher about what the problem is, and under law is required to keep your daughter safe at all times, you can put whatever you need on it regarding the celiac, i am able to eat in class, even w/ teachers who ban it. and other stuff like that, that is the best way to have the teacher know what the celiac is, and that he/she has to take care of your daughter, under law.

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