Chesterfield parent says diabetic students are 'still in danger'

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A Chesterfield parent says her diabetic child and other diabetic students aren't safe at the county's public schools.

Thirteen-year-old Jordan Providence says she almost passed out at Matoaca Middle School when her blood sugar level dropped and the school clinic didn't know what to do. This is the second claim of its kind in just the last year.

A Chesterfield Schools spokesman says every school has at least two employees trained to help students with diabetes. However, some parents say that training is far from good enough.

One of those parents is Jordan's mom, Yuri. Last week, she says Jordan was in class when her blood sugar dropped and she began losing consciousness.

"I could see people but their voices were far away," said the teen. "I was thinking 'am I OK?' in my head and then I heard my friend in the background saying 'Jordan are you OK?'"

Jordan's blood sugar was at 37, while a normal reading is more than twice that.

Yuri Providence says before her daughter was given a glucose stick to stabilize her blood sugar, the school's Clinician Assistant called her twice for advice on what to do.

"I want to make sure that the people who are in the clinic who are responsible for being first responders for children with chronic diseases are clinically trained professionals," said Yuri Providence.

Clinician Assistants work in Chesterfield schools but aren't registered nurses. They receive training from the Virginia Department of Health.

The fight to have better trained Clinician Assistants inside Chesterfield County schools extends beyond Matoaca Middle. Another Chesterfield mom has been fighting this battle since last year.

Catherine Martin's daughter, Lily, was diagnosed with type-one diabetes when she was 19-months-old.

Martin has been fighting since she says her daughter was given the wrong dose of insulin twice at Swift Creek Elementary last year.

Martin has gone all the way to the General Assembly, but her bill hasn't been signed yet and she says Chesterfield children with diabetes can't wait.

"I know how terrifying it is to send a kid to school that can die in less than two hours in a school system that doesn't care," said Martin.

Chesterfield schools says it can't comment on either case specifically, but that every Chesterfield school has at least two employees trained in the administration of insulin and glucagon.

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