Safe at School
For a student using insulin, diabetes must be managed 24/7, including the many hours spent at school, on field trips and in extra-curricular activities.
Some families can send their child with diabetes to school in the morning and feel confident that the school will be prepared to provide the diabetes care that meets their child's needs. Other families worry that their child won't have access to good diabetes management, that their child will be excluded from activities or have to take an exam when blood glucose levels are plummeting.
Safe at School: Safety and Fairness for Children with Diabetes (PDF)
An overview of the Association's Safe at School Campaign
Just for Parents/Guardians of School-aged Children with Diabetes!
The American Diabetes Association is pleased to offer a free webinar - to help you learn how to ensure that your child with diabetes is both medically safe, and has the same educational opportunities as peers without diabetes.
Learn more here.
Common School Challenges
The Association's legal advocates are contacted by families everyday about challenges like the following:
- Lack of diabetes-specific trained personnel to perform routine and emergency diabetes care during the school day, field trips and extra-curricular activities
- Prohibition of students who self-manage their diabetes from performing self-care in the classroom or wherever student happens to be
- Exclusion of students with diabetes from extra-curricular activities, sports teams, or even an entire school because of diabetes
- Lack of accommodations for students ranging from access to water and food to being able to make up work missed due to diabetes
Safe at School Campaign Goals
The American Diabetes Association's Safe at School Campaign has two primary goals, to ensure that
- All children with diabetes are medically safe at school and
- All children with diabetes have the same educational opportunities as their classmates.
The Safe at School Campaign helps families overcome barriers at school by building greater awareness about the kinds of challenges encountered by children with diabetes in schools and also by providing simple, safe solutions to these challenges.
We do this by developing the tools needed to provide diabetes care at school, and by helping families and school personnel to develop plans to prevent problems from occurring. When problems do occur, we have a team of dedicated advocates including lawyers and health care professionals ready to find solutions, providing support in a variety of ways:
- Providing families with information about students' rights and school discrimination.
- Providing in-person trainings to school personnel so they have the information and resources necessary to provide a safe school environment.
- Offering parent advocacy trainings.
- Providing individual families help via trained school advocates and attorneys.
- Working with lawyers around the country who are pursuing litigation in the school area
- Changing state laws that stand in the way of good diabetes management at school
Effective school-based diabetes management requires three things. Read the Safe at School Statement of Principles.
For effective diabetes management at school the family, health care provider, and school personnel must work together.
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