Educational support for children with medical needs

Children may experience ill health at some point during their time at school and others may have an ongoing medical condition that potentially impairs their ability to access education in school. In the majority of cases, schools are able to support pupils in such circumstances effectively.

The following describes how in more exceptional cases support can be made available so as to minimise any serious disruption to a child's education and whose needs cannot normally be met by their school.

Pupils at school with medical conditions

The school governing body has a duty to make arrangements to support children at school with medical conditions.

Schools have the freedom to determine their own arrangements on the following guidance which will be overseen by a named person in the school:

  • Procedures to be followed when advised by a medical practitioner that a pupil has a medical condition
  • Individual healthcare plans
  • Staff training and support
  • Children's role in managing their own medical needs
  • Managing medicines on school premises
  • Emergency procedures
  • Day trips, residential visits and sporting activities
  • Home to school transport for pupils requiring special arrangements
  • Unacceptable practice
  • Liability and indemnity
  • Complaints

For full details see the Department for Education's supporting pupils at school with medical conditions statutory guidance.

Children who cannot attend school because of health and medical needs

The council has the overall responsibility for the education of children with health and medical needs who cannot attend school.

H3 (Hub, Home, Hospital) Teaching Team provides an education for children who are unable to attend school because of physical health or mental health needs. The service is commissioned by the host school and requires a referral from a Paediatric Consultant or a Consultant from Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHs).

View the draft policy on education for children with health needs.

For further details contact Les Knight on 01432 261724 or email lknight1@herefordshire.gov.uk

Additional funding for children with significant medical and health needs to access their education

For children with significant medical and heath needs in Herefordshire who attend mainstream schools, early years providers and further education colleges, additional funding can be requested to minimise the impact of these difficulties on their access to the curriculum. The application form should be completed by the education setting and the health professional who oversees the Care Plan to ensure that the provision within school is clinically appropriate in meeting the child's individual medical health needs; it is good practice to involve parents in this discussion.

On receipt of the request for additional funding, a member of the SEN Team will visit the school to discuss the details. A representative of the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and the responsible Local Authority officer will confirm the recommendations for the appropriate clinical provision and the funding agreed.

Each case is considered on its individual merits but in general funding is generally awarded for 12 months. The education setting will need to review the provision and reapply for further funding depending on the outcome of the review.

Children with diabetes

For children with diabetes there is a pathway of support leading to self-management of the condition. In the majority of cases it is expected that children with diabetes will follow this pathway. However, exceptional cases will be considered on their own merit. epilepsy

Children with epilepsy

Supporting young people with epilepsy - a guide for schools This guide is for people who work in schools or other educational settings. It provides information on supporting young people with epilepsy to ensure they are safe and included in all aspects of school life.

Specialist equipment for children with physical difficulties or significant health needs to access their education

All schools are expected to provide low cost aids such as a writing slope, posture pack, laptop, sound recording device or similar up to the value of £600. For more specialist equipment such as radio hearing aids, sound field systems and some specialist seats, the school should contact Les Knight on 01432 261724 or email lknight1@herefordshire.gov.uk or contact the Paediatric Occupational Therapist Team.

The Occupational Therapist (OT) will make an assessment of the child's equipment needs in the school setting and make a recommendation to the council. Once we agree to the recommendations it is our responsibility to ensure that the equipment is provided.

The council operates an equipment loan scheme to schools. When items are no longer required they should be returned to the equipment store for cleaning and storage.

For further information see the accessibility in schools for disabled pupils page.