Austin ISD will now allow review process for teachers denied medical accommodations

Education


AUSTIN (KXAN) — As Austin Independent School District gets ready to welcome more students on campus in the spring, they also will be expecting more teachers to return.

“I have no problem going back to work after a vaccine,” said Annie Dragoo, who teaches at Austin High School, but going back to in-person learning as cases are at an all-time high doesn’t make sense to her.

Dragoo suffers from a rare heart condition and is receiving cancer treatment, but for the upcoming spring semester, the district denied her medical accommodation to work from home. She isn’t the only teacher who was denied.

“I have been trying to figure out a way for me to be distanced and still be there,” Dragoo said.

Austin ISD initially told teachers there would be no appeal process if they were denied, but that has since changed. The district now says teachers can submit more detailed medical information for further consideration.

“So this allows those of us who have a condition that makes us immunocompromised be able to have a second look,” Dragoo said.

Dragoo says she is sending in her paperwork for another review.

She is happy with the change, but she’s still preparing to return.

“I am not going to count my chickens before they hatch,” Dragoo said. “I am not even going to consider that it is going to change until I have it in writing.”

If you are a teacher who was denied a medical accommodation in Austin ISD and need more information about resubmitting your accommodation, visit the district’s website.

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