Family Of Boy With Spina Bifida Says School Can’t Accommodate Hi - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Family Of Boy With Spina Bifida Says School Can’t Accommodate His Needs

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MERCER COUNTY, N.J. - A battle over basic needs is developing for a student in Mercer County.

The family of a 5-year-old with spina bifida claims bathrooms at the kindergarten he's supposed to attend next fall can't accommodate him.

Fox 29’s Thalia Perez talked with that family Tuesday, and they say the bathrooms aren’t the only thing they’re worried about.

Jarrett Kane is a very active 5-year old and gets around using a walker that he calls "Iron Man" and crutches.

When he enters kindergarten at University Heights Elementary his mom wants him to use the bathroom like every other student, but she says there aren't any bathrooms at the school that Jarrett can use with his walker and maneuver around in.

"The bathroom does not provide for a low-level changing surface where he could lay down to be catheterized and enough room for him to toilet in there as well," said Jarrett’s mother, Kerri Kane.

According to Kerri, all of the bathrooms in the school either have toilets that are too high, or stalls too small for Jarrett’s walker.

Jarrett wears a diaper, but is on a training regimen that requires him to sit on the toilet almost every 30 minutes after a beverage to gain bladder muscle control. However, Kerri says the district is dismissing his needs and proposing to limit his ability do so.

“They're saying because he's catheterized, there's no need for him to sit on a toilet," said Kerri.

But that’s not all, Kerri says Jarrett may also miss out on playing with kids on the playground because it is not accessible to him as it lies on a hill and filled with mulch.

It’s a battle with the school district that Kerri feels she's fighting by herself.

According to Kerri, she offered to raise money to modify both the bathroom and playground, but she claims the school district knocked down her proposal.

“Having a child with special needs is hard enough, but when you look at everything involved in it. School should be the simplest aspect of it," she said.

Hamilton School District issued the following statement:

"Our school district is committed to ensuring an accessible environment for all children including those with mobility impairments," said Superintendent for Hamilton School District, Dr. James Parla.


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