Tips for Back to School with Diabetes

It’s back to school time here in TN, or at least where we live. Sara started 10th grade today. It’s easier now that she is in high school. She mainly goes to the nurse to check her blood sugar, but otherwise takes care of things herself.

She has snacks in her backpack which she carries with her. Her backpack isn’t good for her back, it weighs 50 pounds probably! So today I just sent a bag to the nurse in her backpack which had her meter, extra strips and lancets, alcohol wipes, two extra infusion sets and reservoirs for pumps, insulin, glucagon, ketone strips, and back up syringes. She also took a bag of “low” foods.

Check with your school about whether you can send medicines or supplies with your child or if you need to physically hand them in person to your nurse.

For those with little ones, it does get easier as they get older and can take care of themselves! Sending a kindergartener off to school is scary enough and diabetes adds to the worry!

Here’s a post I wrote back in 2012 when Sara was younger on things to remember when starting school with diabetes. Hope it helps to republish it!

Having a child with diabetes in school can be stressful, as if just getting back into the school routine isn’t stressful enough.  Here are some tips to ease the transition back to school:

  • Create a written plan for school.  This involves meeting with the school nurse, teachers, and other important figures at your school.  This usually requires getting signed doctor’s orders for specifics in how the school is to care for your child. Here’s a post on what to include in a school care plan.
  • Meet individually with the teachers and make sure they understand how to take care of your child.  Also discuss what to do if they have a substitute teacher.  One of Sara’s teachers had a booklet with her picture on it with specifics about her treatment in case a substitute was there.
  • Make sure all teachers, including PE coaches, music/art teachers, and anyone your child is with, knows the symptoms of low and high blood sugars and what to do.
  • Provide snacks for treating low blood sugars including whether extras need to be kept in the gym or other areas at school.
  • Meet with the cafeteria staff if your child is buying lunch.  They should have a menu with the carb counts already figured.
  • Have the school contact you for all school field trips or anything out of the ordinary.
  • Have the school be as discreet as possible and not cause extra attention that your child may not like or may feel singled out and different or embarrassed.

If you think your nurse needs more education on type 1 diabetes and kids, our  QuickStart Type 1 Diabetes for Kids education online course would be a great resource!

Here’s a great resource from Project Blue November with resources for school.

What are some of your tips for back to school?  Please share in the comments!

Be  sure and join our Facebook group Parenting Diabetes and join in on the discussions to help each other!

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Author: Carol

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