Diabetes is the one of long term health conditions that is not being given the attention it deserves within Scottish schools.
Tam Baillie, Commissioner for Children and Young People in Scotland, has published research showing there’s a lack of guidance over the level of care that is to be expected by those with long term health conditions.
Surveys and a number of Freedom of Information requests were used to build up a picture of the level of care currently available. Councils, schools, parents, carers and focus groups were all involved in the research.
The outcome of the research showed that there was considerable variation in the level of care provided within Scottish schools. Whilst a number of schools performed very well in their provision of care, good practice was not being shared well to other schools.
The problems that can occur are highlighted by a recent case in which seven year old Callum Wyper missed out on months of schooling as his school, Dykehead Primary School, lacked the support needed to help Callum manage his type 1 diabetes through the day.
Children with type 1 diabetes, particularly younger children, may require help and a certain amount of monitoring through the school day and may need assistance with blood glucose testing and the administering of insulin injections.
A number of schools were shown to be confused as to the legal side of what care that can and should provide, and that the confusion existed amongst many education authorities.
The research includes a number of recommendations which include the involvement of children in developing good care within schools and for sharing best practice across schools.
Mr Bailey stated with regard to future plans: “The guidance must be amended as soon as possible to reflect the law, so that children with health conditions get the education/ that is their right.”

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