Individual students who need help with health issues
Parents have the prime responsibility for the health of their children.
School staff have a duty to keep students safe while they are at school or are involved in school activities.
Schools welcome information from parents about their children's health, whether or not they are requesting specific support from the school.
Schools encourage parents to provide information about their children's health both on enrolment and on an ongoing basis. Schools can include an item in their newsletter (Ms word 24 kB) or possibly send a note home that reminds parents to notify the school of any new health conditions, as well as changes to existing health care needs.
When students need help with health issues at school, parents may need to consult with their medical practitioner about the implications of the child's health condition for their schooling. Parents need to convey relevant information from the medical practitioner to the school.
All children and young people are entitled to participate in education and training regardless of their health support needs. Planning needs to occur to determine the best way for the individual health support needs to be met in the context of the particular school. This may require the principal to seek additional support from the Department so that appropriate arrangements can be made for the student's participation at school.
Schools arrange support for students to have their health needs met so that they can participate in their learning program. In doing so, they make all efforts to ensure that these students have equal opportunities.
Refusing enrolment or continued access to education because of a need to administer prescribed medication and/or health care procedures other than in circumstances where there are unresolvable safety issues would be to unlawfully discriminate against the student on the ground of his or her disability.
Schools and parents work together to put arrangements in place for support.
The principal co-ordinates consultation with relevant staff.
Parents need to provide prescribed medication or other consumables as agreed with the school before the plan commences.
Schools provide support to individual students by:
The principal is the manager in each school. He or she co-ordinates plans for the provision of health and safety in the school environment and will seek an effective partnership with parents so that arrangements for support can be made.
While the overall management of a student's health support rests primarily with the parent, the Department of Education and Training has a general duty of care to take reasonable steps to keep students safe while they attend school.
This includes the administration of prescribed medication and health care procedures (see glossary) for students at school in circumstances where the medication or the procedures are medically necessary during school hours.
Where student's health support needs are more complex or sensitive, a written individual health care plan formalises the planning process.
Individual health care plans
An individual health care plan must be developed for:
- severe asthma, type 1 diabetes, epilepsy and anaphylaxis
- any student who is diagnosed as being at risk of an emergency reaction
- any student who requires the administration of health care procedures (see glossary)
Principals decide whether a written individual health care plan will be developed in other cases where it will assist (for example, where a number of staff have different roles that need to be co-ordinated or where for some other reason the support is complex to manage in the particular school).