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Moray schoolgirl told she can’t go on school trip because of her diabetes

Aaliyah Edwards
Aaliyah Edwards

A Moray youngster has been left at home after she was barred from a school trip because of her diabetes.

Jaye Thomson claims her 13-year-old daughter was only told “at the last minute” that she couldn’t join her pals on the excursion to a Highlands holiday park.

Aaliyah was supposed to set off on Sunday, but her guidance teacher phoned Ms Thomson on Friday at 4pm to advise her of the change of plan.

The furious mum says that left her no time to fight against the decision, and that her type one diabetic daughter was left “devastated”.

She has now blasted Elgin High School for “discriminating” against the teenager because of her health condition.

Yesterday, Moray Council insisted they could not “take the risk” of taking the pupil on the excursion after repeated requests for information about the teenager’s needs went unanswered.

But Ms Thomson insists she supplied the school with all the necessary details after meeting staff at the beginning of the month.

She said arrangements for the trip were made in January, when she signed a permission slip to allow Aaliyah to travel the Granny’s Heilan Hame resort at Embo with her S1 class.

Ms Thomson said: “The school was well-aware that she was diabetic back then, but it was only recently that they sent an e-mail asking about medical problems affecting any of the children that were going.

“I went to a meeting at the school earlier this month just to go over things and to make sure Aaliyah would be safe.

“At that point, I got the impression that the teachers didn’t want her to go because it would be a hassle for them.”

Ms Thomson said the timing of the call made it impossible for her to contest the decision with school bosses or Moray Council.

During the trip north, the children will enjoy dolphin-spotting sessions, shopping in Inverness, a day out in Dornoch and a trip to the Ben Bhraggie hill in Sutherland.

Ms Thomson added: “I had adjusted Aaliyah’s insulin so that she would be fine for all the activities, but she was on a similar trip last year with New Elgin Primary School and had no problems.

“She was really looking forward to it, but then spent all of Friday evening crying on and off when she found out she couldn’t go, she was really devastated.

She added: “It’s the way the school went about this that hurts the most, they made it so hard for her and I do consider it discrimination.

“Diabetes is classed as a disability and it’s the only reason she’s not been allowed to go.”

Ms Thomson has pulled her daughter from the school this week, as she fears having to attend classes while all her peers are on the trip would only further upset her.

A Moray Council spokesman said: “The school did everything possible to get the necessary information from Ms Thomson about Aaliyah’s condition and medication but, despite repeated efforts over a number of weeks, this was not forthcoming.

“In the absence of that information and following consultation with professionals from other sectors, the school decided that it could not take the risk of allowing Aaliyah to join the class trip to what is a relatively remote area.

“We can understand her disappointment but we’re satisfied that no fault lies with the school.”

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