Many parents are quite rightly concerned with how their child is looked after at school once they have been diagnosed with epilepsy. In most cases, children with epilepsy will need very little support if their epilepsy is under control with medicine. However, a growing issue is that many schools and places of education are underprepared should the need to care for someone with epilepsy arise.
According to the Children and Families Act 2014 schools are required to put special measures in place for children who have a medical condition. It’s imperative that children with a medical condition, such as epilepsy, are afforded the same opportunities as all other children.
For a child with epilepsy this could mean a number of things:
Epilepsy as a disorder is incredibly varied and can affect each child differently. The degree and type of epilepsy will likely correspond with how it affects their school life.
Many children who have epilepsy will lead very normal school lives, with very few problems with learning and behaviour. However, it is true that children with epilepsy are more likely to have problems, which can range from mild to severe. These children will likely need extra support from their school to ensure they don’t fall behind. All too often these kinds of learning difficulties through epilepsy go unsupported or completely unnoticed.
There are a number of ways epilepsy can affect a child’s learning capabilities or behaviour, including:
There are a variety of other things that need to be taken into account if you have a child with epilepsy. For example, transport to school may be an issue, which is something your local authority may be able to help with. Another consideration is exams, which can be stressful situations for all children, but could be particularly for a child with epilepsy, especially if stress is a trigger.
If your school has a student who has epilepsy and you’re looking for guidance in how to best care for them, National Epilepsy Training can help. From staff training, right through to care planning we can ensure you are well prepared to manage students with epilepsy effectively.
For more information, please feel free to call us on 01706 373075 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.