Charity launches new free diabetes guide for schools

Martin Hirst of the InDependent Diabetes Trust discusses the new booklet with a parent. Picture: Andrew Carpenter
Martin Hirst of the InDependent Diabetes Trust discusses the new booklet with a parent. Picture: Andrew Carpenter

A free booklet for schools containing essential information about diabetes has been published by a charity.

The InDependent Diabetes Trust (IDDT) has released the 16-page information document as part of a campaign to drive up standards of care for pupils with diabetes in light of recent legislation.

Martin Hirst, chief executive of the InDependent Diabetes Trust. Picture: Andrew Carpenter

Martin Hirst, chief executive of the InDependent Diabetes Trust. Picture: Andrew Carpenter

The publication, Diabetes – What Schools Need To Know, compliments the Parents Passport for Schools, which was also launched by the charity last year to help schools improve diabetes care.

The new booklet is a resource for teachers and school staff, providing them with general information about diabetes and tips about managing the condition in the school environment.

It covers key facts, including the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, as well as sections on using insulin, diet and carbohydrates, exercise and blood glucose testing.

Information on hypoglycaemia, hyperglycaemia, stress and communication are also included.

Martin Hirst, chief executive of the charity, said: “We have been asked to develop a resource for teachers and school staff, to give them information in general about diabetes and some tips about managing the condition in the school environment.

“This booklet looks at not just the practical side of managing diabetes but also the emotional effect it can have on everyone involved, with the aim of minimising the impact that living with the condition can have.

“We hope this booklet, alongside the passport, will prove to be valuable tools for teachers with a child with diabetes in their charge, school nurses and specialist educational needs (SEN) co-ordinators.”

A legal duty for schools in England to support youngsters with long-term health conditions, including Type 1 diabetes, was introduced at the beginning of the 2014-15 school year.

Under the Children and Families Act 2014, schools need to have a medical conditions policy in place, along with an individual healthcare plan for any children with Type 1 diabetes.

In response, the Parents Passport for Schools was launched in May 2015 and so far more than 7,000 copies have been sent out.

It provides a means by which parents can formally let schools know how to manage their child’s diabetes and in turn support schools to comply with SEN regulations, as well as informing teachers about the condition. The latest publication is designed to work alongside the passport.

IDDT, an International charity, has more than 17,000 members and works across the globe helping families and people with diabetes to manage their condition and live positive, healthy lives.

The charity provides a free, confidential helpline, has published dozens of helpful publications, stages events and lobbies the government on behalf of people with diabetes.

To order free copies of Diabetes – What Schools Need To Know and the Parents Passport for Schools, call 01604 622837 or email martin@iddtinternational.org.

You can download the publication at http://www.iddt.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/IDDT-Diabetes-What-Schools-Need-to-Know.pdf