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I am new to all this but i'll try my best not to rabble on too much

My 6Yr old son came home yesterday saying his dinner lady gave him his inhaler which i thought was good as he knows when he needs it. i later looked in his book bag for a note or little letter saying that he has had his inhaler at school and had this many puffs.....I found none.

This morning i paid his teacher a visit before school and asked if there was a record of him having his inhaler......... No we just give it to him as and when he needs it..... was the reply i got. i started getting a little annoyed and said how am i suppose to keep track of how he is doing when i dont know whats been happening at school? he said we've not been told to write anything down. (oh and apparently its not the first time either!)

i later on rang the head teacher and he came up with the same excuse.....its not our policy to record when anyone has their inhalers but if i wanted he would talk to his teachers and get them to write it down for me.

Is this just me being picky or is it common sense that you let the parent know somehow if they have had medication?

i get a note or phone call if my son falls over in the playground why is it so different for them to do the same when its his breathing thats affected?

is there anyone who has been in this situation before and know how they can help me get though to the school?


1 Reply

I'm replying as an ex-teacher... I worked in a school that had a disproportionately high number of children with additional/medical/special needs so this may not be transferable to other settings particularly as we had much smaller classes and a higher staff:pupil ratio so it was easier to keep a close but discrete eye on the children.

Our aim was always to make the children as independent (provided it was safe to do so) as possible in managing their medications/conditions whether they carried them themselves or went to the nurse to get them. What was best was decided on an individual basis as all children are different.

If a child needed their inhaler as a single treatment after which they were fine and could join in all activities we wouldn't tend to follow up, so long as this wasn't a regular occurrence. After all, the (generally) older children who had their own inhalers wouldn't tell us if they had occasional need for them, so they would be reporting to their parents. But, as I've said, it depends, and in the case of some children you would still have a discrete word with the parents at the end of the day.

However, if there was any concern about lack of improvement, needing lots of treatment etc. I would refer to the school nurse who would contact the parents particularly if this was new/not according to the child's written medical records.

The trouble is that there is no requirement to do anything or any statutory guidelines about management of medical conditions. The school I taught at had a good reputation for pastoral care and as a result we attracted more children with particular needs which subsequently means more teachers were trained in first aid and then specific skills, for instance in relation to the growing number of children we had who used epi-pens - we got to spend a great morning jabbing each other with dummy pens!!

So, to sum up this waffle, it depends and there aren't any guidelines. I don't think the teacher has acted irresponsibly but if it would help you manage your son's asthma I think it would be a good idea to ask for a record. I hope that helps.


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