Finding out your child has a medical condition or medical need can be a challenge. We do not underestimate the effect this can have on families.
Every parent wants the best for their child and to know that they receive support to meet their needs. Be assured that our city’s schools are knowledgeable, capable and experienced.
Southampton City Council (SCC) supports our city’s schools to meet the needs of children and young people with medical conditions. We want them to have the fullest possible access to education. This includes school trips and physical education, in line with government guidance.
How we work
We work to achieve this through collaboration and a multi organisational approach. As a parent, you should be a part of this. Please contact your child’s home school as early as possible to share anything about your child’s medical needs. The home school is the school at which they are on roll. Even if you do not yet have a diagnosis, discussions can begin to take place about how to support them.
We work with several groups. These include:
- NHS/healthcare partners
- Social Care
- Education Welfare Service
- Your child’s home school
Support aims to be timely and focused on each case. The views of both child and parents is important for all groups involved in planning. Our support may be through guidance, consultation and/or monitoring. It covers more common conditions through to complex cases.
Complex cases may result in a referral to the Medical Outreach Service. These cases need further consultation and a careful multi-agency approach. The service aim is reintegration and may link to ongoing therapeutic intervention from other partners.
Helping your child
Reintegration and a stable placement within a school will benefit your child. Children with a sense of community have improved recovery rates. Long stays in hospital can be lonely so we encourage schools and parents to maintain contact with their peers during these.
To provide children and young people with the best chance of future success we want to meet their needs. This means meeting social and emotional needs. It also means enabling access to good quality education.
Guidance for schools
SCC has produced local guidance for our schools and expects them to follow this. Children should get support and return to full time education as soon as possible. The guidance offers clarity over reintegrating and managing pupils with medical conditions. This includes ownership, flexibility and the responsiveness of schools.
Wherever possible the local authority expectation is a graduated response to medical needs through early intervention.