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Students denied education because of disabilities

Thursday, October 06, 2011 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: seizures, students, health news

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(NaturalNews) If you have a disability that could be interpreted as disruptive or distracting to others -- and you lack the means to deal with it on your own -- you just might be denied an education. This is exactly what happened to Channing Seideman, a former student at Colorado Mountain College, when she had an unexpected seizure during an emergency medical technician class at the school.

CBS 4 in Denver, Colo., reports that Seideman's teacher and other faculty members asked her to drop the class following her seizure because she might experience more, and such incidents would negatively affect the other students ability to learn, they claim. Seideman has since filed a complaint against the school alleging that it has violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with its actions.

The ADA, of course, was designed specifically to address issues of discrimination against individuals with disabilities in mainstream society. Under most circumstances, it prohibits employers, public entities, public accommodations, telecommunications, and others from discriminating against individuals on the basis of their physical, mental, and cognitive disabilities.

Seideman's seizure incident is not technically even a "disability" to begin with, though, as having seizures, even fairly frequently, is a manageable condition. In Seideman's case, it does not necessarily even affect her overall ability to learn, and absolutely does not warrant her removal from school.

"They're allowed to have a seizure in class," said Seideman to CBS 4 concerning her complaint against the school, as well as concerning the right of other students who have seizures to remain enrolled. "They don't have to get kicked out. It's kind of just paving the way for other people with disabilities or epileptics to be kicked out of school."

In a similar incident, faculty at Metro State College in Denver recently removed Brandon Teter from their school because of his his inability to obtain an aide to help him with his disability while on campus. Teter, a Navy veteran, occasionally experiences severe back spasms after having been injured by a bomb in Iraq.

"I just want to live a normal life, I want the same rights that everybody else has." said Teter to NBC 9 News in Denver.

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