Charlotte is a Year 9 student at a large district high school. Charlotte was diagnosed as having type 1 diabetes when she was 4 years old and has moved to a significant level of independent management of her medical condition.
Charlotte is insulin dependent and has a healthcare plan in place that is reviewed by the school nurse, her year coordinator, Charlotte and her parents at the beginning of each year. Her plan is reviewed and signed by her medical practitioner and additional meetings take place if changes need to be made throughout the year.
However, in the last six months Charlotte’s insulin levels have been unstable. Her medical team is working with the school to stabilise her levels. This requires hourly testing of her blood sugar levels, which are monitored and recorded by her teacher. The teaching staff have noticed the impact of this on her ability to concentrate in class, which in turn impacts on her participation and completion of classroom activities.
Currently, the strategies in place to support Charlotte include:
- professional learning from the Diabetes Education Officer provided staff with education regarding diabetes in adolescents and training in the implementation of Charlotte’s emergency response plan
- teachers ensure Charlotte attends to her hourly blood sugar testing
- teachers observe and identify possible changes to her behaviour which might indicate hyperglycemia or hypoglycaemia using their knowledge from the training by the Diabetes Education Officer
- teachers modify Charlotte’s workload based on how she is feeling
- classroom teachers report updates on Charlotte’s progress via email on a weekly basis to the year coordinator.
In particular, the Physical Education teacher has a care plan to address Charlotte’s needs when participating in physical activities, both on and off the school site.