What is it about?

The debate about the return to schools within the COVID-19 pandemic has been intense. This viewpoint presents reflections on the return for children and young people who live with chronic illness like asthma or juvenile arthritis. This is a very diverse group of students and we offer a framework with three different situations: those who may need to continue learning at home; those who have well-controlled conditions and can return, and the support needed for children and young people who struggle to control their chronic illness. We believe that effective joint working between health and education professionals, students and families is essential for success. We also hope that the rapid advances made during the pandemic regarding online education and telemedicine will benefit students who normally miss schooldays through difficult symptoms or the need to travel to healthcare appointments.

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Why is it important?

It is very important for as many students as possible to go back to school, but those with chronic illness may be very concerned. This article hopes to help families trying to make difficult decisions. We recommend better relationships between medical teams and school teams to help students, and thoughtful use of technology.

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This page is a summary of: Returning to school: children and young people living with chronic illness, Journal of Children s Services, September 2020, Emerald, DOI: 10.1108/jcs-06-2020-0019.
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