Getting ready to start school or transitioning from primary school to secondary school can be an exciting but sometimes confronting time for any young person and their parents. As a young person living with epilepsy there are a number of additional things to consider beyond “Will I like my teacher and are my friends going to be in the same class as me?”. To assist your family throughout this period, the Epilepsy Foundation has developed a range of web based resources to support a student living with epilepsy. These resources are available on the Epilepsy Smart Schools Website.
Each state and territory Education Department also provides comprehensive transition information for families. This is a great place to start to ensure that as a parent you understand your child’s rights and know which questions to ask to ensure that your child’s health and wellbeing needs are met throughout their schooling years.
The Epilepsy Foundation works closely with government to ensure that Seizure Policies for schools reflect best practice in the support of students living with epilepsy.
Education: the student and epilepsy
It is important that you work with your child’s teachers to develop an appropriate Health Support Plan which takes into consideration your child’s individual Epilepsy Management Plan or Emergency Medication Management Plan. The Epilepsy Foundation can provide training to teachers in how to administer emergency medication as per your child’s plan.
Have you looked at our Epilepsy Smart School Website? The Epilepsy Foundation can work with your child’s school, train staff and raise awareness of epilepsy in general and more specifically understanding on how best to support your child. This is a vital step in ensuring that your child achieves his/her academic potential and develops valuable peer relationships that will build a strong foundation for a successful future.
Clear communication between the child/young person with epilepsy, the family and the teachers is crucial in supporting successful transitions throughout the learning years.
Click here to go to our Youtube channel to hear from a young person living with epilepsy about their schooling experience.
Click here to listen to an interview that Marg, Epilepsy Nurse Educator, participated in via the NCCD Education Department podcast series. In the interview Marg talks about potential adjustments that can be made in the classroom and clear up some common misconceptions about epilepsy.