Information for schools

 

School can be tough for any child but especially if that child has one of the myasthenias.

Here, you will find advice on how to help people with myasthenia through the school day and some helpful tips on how you can enhance their overall school experience.

Medication

Children affected by myasthenia may need medication up to seven times a day. It has to be punctual and regular or the child's health and mobility can be compromised.

With training, support and understanding, it is usually preferable for the school to administer the necessary medication. If the head teacher agrees to this, the child will enjoy a greater sense of inclusion in the day-to-day life of the school.

Accessible buildings

Living with myasthenia means that mobility can fluctuate throughout the day. This is why it is important that schools have accessible buildings.

Many things can present difficulties for children with myasthenia including; steps, heavy doors and uneven playgrounds.

To access a mainstream school, some pupils will need a supporting adult to help them access equipment; write for them; move around safely; visit the toilet; carrying bags and books and to assist with medication.

Flexibility during the school day

Due to the fluctuating nature of the condition, teachers find that children with myasthenia are sometimes too fatigued to take part in some activities.

PE is a particular challenge and if a child is too fatigued to take part, they should be listened to and excused.

We know that schools are under pressure to ensure that attendance and punctuality is high and for children with myasthenia, pressure can cause stress which in turn makes the myasthenia worse.

Helpful tips

Every child with myasthenia is different, however, here are some helpful tips that help most in the school environment.

  • Use a chair of suitable height - avoid sitting on the floor and having to get up and down frequently
  • Allow extra time for completing work and for tests, if necessary
  • Use computers instead of writing
  • Discuss their participation in PE and sport
  • Avoid them having to stand in queues
  • Be aware that droopy eyes, squint, slurred speech and low speech volume may incur teasing and criticism
  • Facilitating the taking of medication precisely on time in school without fail
  • Accept that children are not "making things up" at certain times or on some days as myasthenia symptoms typically vary from day-to-day

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