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DIABETES AND SCHOOL EXAMS

Discussion in 'Parents' started by stoney, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. stoney

    stoney Parent · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Everyone
    I am looking for some advice/information with regard to a situation that happened today in school with regard to my 14 year old Son who is a Type 1 Diabetic. He is at the moment doing course work for his forthcoming GCSE's and did not feel well in the middle of his English exam. Instead of telling the teacher how he was feeling ( he took some lucozade ) and just plodded on until the end of the exam then went to see the nurse to check his BG's. His reading was on the high side which was of course the lucozade kicking in. He told the nurse what had happened and she was going to email the teacher so that he can hopefully finish and look through his work again tomorrow (Tuesday).

    My question is are Diabetics allowed extra time for such situations and if so, do you know what the procedure would be as we are concerned for next year when he sits the main GCSE's.

    Thank You

    Yvonne
     
  2. dot

    dot · Well-Known Member

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    I am hoping for an answer to this as well as I am in exactly the same situation with a T1 son in year 10.

    I am virtually 100% sure that there is provision for T1 to leave the exam room to deal with a hypo and then return once sorted. Whether there is an extra time allowance for this I have no idea.

    My son's parent's evening in coming up in a week or so, so will speak to someone about it to see what can be sorted.
     
  3. stoney

    stoney Parent · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Dot

    James was sooooooooo stressed last night actually did not want to go into school today (he's never been like that before). Anyway I spoke to his Medical Person in school today and she said she has already spoken to the teacher concerned who will look over his work and give him time today to finish off and check over what he did yesterday and that he should have said he was not feeling right (now I think James realises the importance of telling someone). I asked what the procedure would be for next year when he is completing his GCSE's and she said that we can speak to the education board and also bring it up in our parent's evening which is the middle of March. I would interested to hear from you after you have had your meeting and I too will let you know our outcome.

    This is James's last day for exams today and hopefully he will be able to relax. He is to see Wales -v- Costa Rica tomorrow in Cardiff with friends so that should give him some relaxation (I hope). :thumbup:
     
  4. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
    Retired Moderator

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    Yvonne,

    Unsure of the answer but it's certainly worth discussing this with his Head of Year or Headteacher.
     
  5. dot

    dot · Well-Known Member

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    Stoney, I hope James has chilled out now.

    I will try to remember to raise this at parent's evening, although I might forget as my brain is like a sieve at the moment. I am sure there will be ways of making provision for potential hypos etc, but just need to clarify what needs to be done and who needs to be informed. Needs to be done as Iestyn has got his first year 10 gcse in mid May.
     
  6. Jen&Khaleb

    Jen&Khaleb · Well-Known Member

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    This wont help you that much but in Australia the kids with T1 are allowed to have bg tester and food in the exam with them. If for some reason they cannot do the exam due to T1 they are also able to take a make-up test. There is usually ample time to do the exam and test or eat (something quiet). Bathroom breaks are also permitted for T1's. I think this was put in as the stress of exams often made kids high and cause the bladder to fill to the eyeballs.
     
  7. Elc1112

    Elc1112 · Well-Known Member

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    It's been a while since I sat any exams, but I can tell what what I did. My teachers were aware that I was diabetic and I was allowed to take in Lucozade, insulin, BM etc. If I was unwell during the exam they would take my paper away from me and essentially stop the clock until I felt well enough to continue. Thankfully I only had to use this once, but it's good to know that the option is there. Speak to the school. I'm sure they will be able to sort something out :)
     
  8. SandraR

    SandraR · Active Member

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    Hi

    My son is in Year 10 and has started taking some of his GCSE papers. I spoke with his school prior to the exams and discussed what provisions they would make for him.

    Basically, my son is allowed to take in hypo-treatments and his meter - as long as the treatments are in plain, unmarked packaging. He was allowed to choose to sit either at the front of the exam room (where he could easily catch the eye of the invigilator) or at the back in case he needed to leave the room. He was also offered the option to take the exam in a small group room instead of the main exam hall. Any time he takes within the exam time to deal with his diabetes will be added on as extra time at the end of the exam. If he leaves the room, he will be accompanied. So, in essence they stop the clock for him to deal with any diabetes problems - either in the exam room or out of it.

    It has been recommended that he does his BM before and after the exam - so that potentially there is scope for moderating his results if badly affected by hypos/hypers. I don't actually know if this would be considered by an exam board, but no harm in recording the BM's just in case. Having said this, I doubt very much if my lad will take the trouble to do this - he will be focussing on the exams themselves and this won't be his priority.

    ...and so far he hasn't actually needed any of these measures and has completed a number of exam papers without any issues. He reckons the Biology one was a walk in the park - as almost a third of the paper was on diabetes & insulin!!
     
  9. shellyk

    shellyk · Member

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    Hi the situation is the same for my daughter as mentioned above by SandraR, also we have been told that if she were to suffer a major hypo in the middles of the paper, we could apply to the exam board for specil consideration with marking. this is mainly because most children may start to lose concentration before they become aware of hypo signs and this may effect the quality of they work
     
  10. stoney

    stoney Parent · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Everyone thanks for all the information. Will be bringing this up at our parent evening on 21 March. Will let you know what I find out from there too.

    Yvonne
     
  11. phoenix

    phoenix Type 1 · Expert

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  12. iHs

    iHs · Well-Known Member

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    Hi

    Something to think about a bit is to think of taking exams in a similar way to driving a car. Check bg before exam and make sure that if it is within range that it stays that way for the hour or so that the exam will last for. Easy thing to suck a boiled sweet or 2 and that will prevent a hypo coming on.
     
  13. Fiz Boulton

    Fiz Boulton · Newbie

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    hi, with regard to the exam questions. My 15yr old has been told by our fantastic nurse that diabetics are allowed extra time if they need to test blood, inject, have a snack etc.
    My son is sat at the back of the hall and then can leave without disturbing the others, a teacher goes with him. The teacher is supposed to "time" how long he is out of the room, then that "time" is added to the end of the exam for him to finish.
    Our nurse also told us that if his blood is too low or too high before an exam he can be "excused" as if can impact on the childs performance.
    I spoke to the lady in charge of the exams, she wasn't even aware that my son was diabetic!!!!
    Always speak to the school, examiner or teacher about this, it doesn't seem to be widely known!!
    Hope that helps
    Fiz
     
  14. tilda

    tilda · Newbie

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    Hiya I'm 16 and am a type 1 diabetic, I'm not going to lie exams were stressful enough without diabetes as well. But I was given 25% extra time in my exams when I was feeling poorly. Because unfortunately stress make blood glucose levels go up in one exam. In one of my exams my blood was extremely high, I told the examiner about my diabetes and that I couldn't think clearly because my blood was too high, I was allowed to leave the exam and retake the exam again by myself. My tips are to make sure I don't have a sugary breakfast, test before bed and at breakfast. At the beginning of the exam to test and if there are any problems discuss with the examiner. You should be entitled to extra time if feeling ill. Exams are tough with diabetes but talking to the school about it really helped me. Also bring jelly babies or any hypo treatment always into the exam!!
    tilda x
     
  15. Jelly Beans

    Jelly Beans · Member

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    I've had a few troubles not with teachers, or exam boards, but invigilators within the examination room.

    Notify one at the start that you have diabetes, you have sweets/BG kit/insulin pens with you and may need time to leave during the exam. This generally makes things run quicker if you do need to leave, and disrupts less of your time.

    Having an insulin pump, this is technically against the regulations of the exam boards (no electronic communication or storage devices may be brought into the exam room) so I always explain to the examiner what I have in the rare occasion it does beep during the exam. There are many stories of examiners refusing to let people sit exams because of it! Tell them as soon as you can, then they are generally fine with it though sometimes need a little explanation.
     
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