Polk County student says teacher tried to punish him for a side effect of disability


POLK COUNTY, Tenn. (WTVC) A local high school student says his teacher tried to punish him for a side effect of his disability.

Now, the school administration is stepping in, saying the incident is a misunderstanding.

The student says he has type one diabetes, which makes him have to go to the bathroom more than the average teenager.

"I've been dealing with diabetes for seven years now," Braeden Moses said.

Moses says his mother told Polk County High School his freshman year about his condition.

He says this year his senior English teacher allows him to bring a drink into class for that reason.

So, he was surprised when she handed him a note requiring a 350 word essay when he returned from one of many bathroom breaks Tuesday.

"She handed me the post it note that said I need to make better use of my time," Braeden said.

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation says diabetes can cause excess levels of sugar in the blood, which can lead to an increased need to go to the bathroom.

Moses posted about what happened on Facebook.

It's now been shared hundreds of times.

He says, "I've had people from different counties message me saying they've had problems with their teacher before."

Now, the school system says Moses doesn't have to write the essay his teacher requested as punishment for his restroom use.

Administrators say after talking to him and the teacher, they realized she misunderstood the extra trips to the bathroom are tied to his diabetes.

But now, all teachers will be required to review what to do for certain medical disabilities.

Moses says he just hopes this story helps brings awareness to the problem he can't help.

"I'm not really angry just still more disappointed," he said.

Administrators say the school nurse is going to talk to teachers about what to do in these types of situations.