As you might imagine, the Privilege Walk activity is about privilege, but what exactly does privilege mean in the context of diversity? Think about the policies (and possibly procedures) that your school has in place to accommodate diverse students. Do accommodations exist for students with allergies? For students of alternative sexual orientations? Should these accommodations exist? Why or why not? What psychological consequences might result from a lack of policy focused on these students? These are two scenarios that you encounter in this week’s Discussion. As you focus on psychological issues related to education and diversity, you begin exploring topics such as: Racial and sexual identity Group belonging Assimilation Acculturation Academic performance Learning styles Stereotyping Consider how educators might help students to identify and respond to these issues while providing psychological support in the classroom. In addition, think about diverse educators and the issues that they might also face. Chapter 7 in the Moule text broaches these topics, among others. For this Discussion, you select a case study related to (dis)ability or sexual orientation on which to focus and examine the role that school policy plays in the scenario. To prepare: Review Chapter 7 in the Moule course text. Select either Case 8.3 or 9.1 in the Gorski course text on which to focus for this Discussion. Be sure to consult Appendix B for the Points for Consideration related to the case study you select. By Day 3 Post the following: Identify the case study you selected. Describe the issues that arose, and explain the role that school and/or classroom policy played. Explain whether policies and/or practices exist in your classroom and/or school pertaining to the issue(s) in the case study you selected. Explain how you, as the educator, might have handled the issue(s) presented in the case study you selected. Include at least one strategy you might have used. Support your response with at least three scholarly sources. CASE 8.3: NUT ALLERGY Talia had a nut allergy that required extra precautions to ensure her safety while at school. Her teachers, including Mr. Hughes, willingly made accommodations so Talia never felt like she was missing out due to her medical concerns. Some of these accommodations included having all students wash their hands diligently before returning from lunch and making sure students did not bring snacks from home into the classroom. He clearly communicated his “nut-free” policy to all his students’ families, and also sought training from the school nurse on how to use an epinephrine auto-injector, which he could use to administer medication if necessary. p.73 At the beginning of the school year, Talia’s mom, Ms. Thomas, asked Mr. Hughes if she could chaperone all the class’s field trips so she would be present if Talia experienced an allergic reaction. Mr. Hughes agreed, but also mentioned that parents typically attended only one field trip during the year so other parents also would have an opportunity to chaperone. He warned her some might complain about her request, but said he would support her. “Talia’s safety is more important than people’s misperceptions,” Ms. Thomas replied. Mr. Hughes appreciated her advocacy for Talia. When Mr. Hughes sent home permission slips for field trips and requests for chaperones he was mindful to reduce the number of chaperones he needed by one to reserve a spot for Ms. Thomas. He received occasional complaints about why she was permitted to attend multiple trips, but he was quick to point out how helpful it was to have Ms. Thomas on the trips so he could focus on the rest of the students. Then he sent home permission slips and chaperone requests for the last field trip of the year: a visit to the state capitol building. The day he sent permission slips home, Mr. Hughes learned his class had been invited to watch their governor deliver a live press conference. They would even have time to ask her questions and take photos with her. Due to security restrictions at the governor’s office, only a few parents could chaperone. Mr. Hughes received several emails from interested parents who insisted they should chaperone because they hadn’t attended previous trips. Regretfully, Mr. Hughes had to deny most requests. The next day, as he took morning attendance, he noticed Talia looked unusually sad. “What’s wrong, Talia?” he asked. Talia responded that classmates were being mean to her because their parents could not chaperone. “They’re mad because my mom has to come.” “It’s just an excuse,” one of Talia’s classmates said. “We’ve never seen you get sick from nuts.” p.74 Mr. Hughes was shocked, and decided to address this issue with the whole class. This prompted candid responses from students, many of whom said their parents had been complaining at home. Mr. Hughes glanced at Talia, who looked embarrassed. I’m not going to change my policy, he thought, but I definitely need to do something differently. Questions 1 Were Mr. Hughes’ accommodations for Talia, such as allowing her mother to chaperone every field trip, necessary or just considerate? 2 Mr. Hughes was committed to maintaining an equitable environment in his classroom. Given his students’ comments about Talia and the fact that they might have been hearing negative things about Talia and her mother at home, how should he have addressed this situation in the classroom? 3 What policies exist in your class, school, or district, or in other districts, pertaining to nut allergies or similar medical conditions? What else could schools do to ensure the safety of students who are diagnosed with a food allergy?