Diabetes - school information
Diabetes - school information
It is important for families to work closely with school staff to create a safe environment for diabetes. A diabetes healthcare provider will generally work with your child/adolescent, your family and teachers.
Key points to remember about diabetes and school
- children with diabetes go to kindergarten, day care and school and participate in all normal educational and social activities
- every child living with diabetes has specific needs
- it is important for families to work closely with school staff to create a safe environment for diabetes
How is diabetes managed at kindergarten, early childhood and school?
You could share a video with staff at your child's school. Check the external links and downloads below for the link.
Children with diabetes go to kindergarten, day care and school and participate in all normal educational and social activities.
A diabetes healthcare provider will generally work with your child/adolescent, your family and teachers. This ensures that school and early childhood staff know about the safe management of diabetes and can involve your child fully in education based activities without discrimination.
Diabetes action and management plans for kindergarten, early childhood and school
It is important to recognise that every child living with diabetes has specific needs. The 'Clinical Network for Children and Young People's Diabetes Services' has developed a collection of school action and management plans. These aim to support families in creating a safe environment at school for diabetes care. Families need to complete the plans with the support of their local diabetes treating team before sharing them with relevant school staff.
What are some other diabetes resources for schools?
As well as an action and management plan, there are other resources which should be available to your child's school.
School resource flip chart
This is available from Diabetes Youth New Zealand and covers the following topics:
- what is diabetes?
- high blood glucose (hyperglycaemia)
- low blood glucose (hypoglycaemia)
- treatment of a mild to moderate 'hypo'
- treatment of a severe 'hypo'
- food and diabetes
- exercise and diabetes
- diabetes treatment at school/exams
- family, other topics and student's services
This includes items that would be used in the event of a 'hypo' or low blood sugar episode and clear instructions on how to administer. Items could include glucose tablets, juice drinks as well as carbohydrate snacks.
How can we create a safe environment for my child with diabetes at school?
It is important for families to work closely with school staff to create a safe environment for diabetes. Parents need to arrange a meeting with the school as early as possible to discuss the action and management plan and associated care requirements.
Important points to cover with school staff
- schools need to have up to date information resources and education about diabetes - the healthcare professionals who are suitably qualified and are involved in the care of your child should provide the education
- children with diabetes should always wear medic-alert identification at school
- children with diabetes should be allowed to test their blood glucose levels in the classroom if they wish
- children with diabetes should be allowed to inject insulin in public if they wish
- children with type 1 diabetes should never be left alone when hypo or be prevented from eating or drinking to treat or prevent a hypo
There are special conditions for young people living with type 1 diabetes sitting NCEA or Cambridge examinations. Negotiate these with your child's school at the beginning of each academic year. Your child's school needs to submit a 'specialist medical report' to NZQA, early each academic year, for each young person. This report confirms the special requirements for students with diabetes.