Start by finding and identifying the key members of your child’s medical care team and school care team.
Your Medical Team:
- While your child is in the hospital, ask who will be involved in helping plan their return to school. This may include a nurse, social worker, doctor, hospital teacher, psychologist, occupational, speech or physical therapist and others.
- Know that members of your child’s medical care team may change between hospital and outpatient care.
- You may need to sign release forms to share medical information with school staff.
- Find out who can provide letters and medical information when needed. Remember to include your child’s primary care provider. Ask about the best way to reach these team members when you need information.
- Consider asking for a letter from your child’s doctor to cover extended absences or multiple appointments. This will help the attendance office and registrar at your child’s school.
Your School Team:
- To find the key contact at your child’s school, try starting with the school nurse, school counselor, principal or vice-principal.
- Connect with your school’s nurse early on in the process as you can. The school nurse plays a key role in coordinating your child’s care and setting up support when they return. Connecting with them early on may help prevent your child from missing more school due to delays in organizing the services they will need.
- Involve your child’s teacher(s) in the team, but know that they may need support from other school staff and administrators.
- If your child needs medications at school, ask the school nurse for a medication authorization form. You will need to provide medication to the school in a labeled prescription bottle.