We know that more parents and schools are hearing about and accessing support thanks to the new guidance and our Make the Grade campaign. This means that more children with diabetes are feeling the benefits. And we’re seeing the results in our annual surveys which show consistent improvements every year in the care provided to children with diabetes in schools.
Diabetes care of children in school
But we’re not there yet. Our surveys also show that many parents and schools still need our help. Our commitments are:
1. Make sure more schools and parents have the tools they need to provide good care
School packs and online resources
Not all schools and parents know about our school packs and online resources so we will target more to give them access to the help they need.
Help for school trips and exams
Parents have told us that:
School trips and exams can be very stressful to plan for.
- Sometimes it’s hard to find the information they need easily such as good practice, rights and responsibilities.
- When planning for school trips and exams, lots of information needs to be exchanged between parents, the child and schools.
- Simple tools to help with all of these things is needed.
We asked parents and schools to tell us what they need in a tool to make it straightforward to manage school trips and exams successfully. They gave us lots of information and advice which has helped us produce tools to suit their needs. But this is still a work in progress.
In May 2016 we released two digital interactive tools: one for residential school trips and one for exams. We are now calling on schools and families to put these into use and to tell us what they think.
2. Give more children and young people with diabetes a say in what good care at school should look like
Children and young people with Type 1 diabetes have a lot to say and, we’ve seen how good they are at raising awareness through the fabulous films they made in the diabetes in school short film competition.
We’ll be exploring innovative ways to support young people to create their own content. Email us your ideas at email@example.com.
3. Reward more schools that look after children well, and connect them with others who can learn from their success.
In 2015 we saw over 1,000 schools nominated for the Good Diabetes Care in School Award. We know it is helping schools get the right procedures in place and giving them an incentive to deliver great diabetes care. It also means that parents can find out which schools in their area are delivering good care.
We’ll be making sure more schools get recognition for good work and we will help them share their good practice and successes with other schools. We’ll be continuing to add awarded schools to our Honour Wall.
4. Help more parents to advocate for their children where care isn’t good enough.
Our Care in School Helpline has helped over 230 families get the care their child deserves at school. We know there are more parents who need our support. Our trained volunteers are based all around the UK to provide rights-based information and support so that parents can resolve problems they are experiencing at school.
5. Ask OFSTED to include medical conditions in inspections to ensure schools in England implement the new duty.
Diabetes UK chairs the Health Conditions in School Alliance of 30 organisations together representing over 1 million children with health conditions in the UK. Thanks to this collaboration we changed the law in England.
We will continue to work through the alliance to ask OFSTED to include medical conditions in their school inspections. We believe this will help many more children get the medical care and support they need at school.
For information, go to the Health Conditions in School Alliance website.
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6. Work with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, who don’t have the law that England does, to ensure that best practice in schools is understood and implemented.
We can’t do any of this alone, so whether you are a school, a parent or a diabetes clinician, thank you for your support. We hope you continue to support and benefit from the Type 1 diabetes: Make the grade campaign. Together we can make good diabetes care in school a reality for all children and young people with Type 1 diabetes.