Asthma UK community forum

Is the school to blame?

My 6 yr old has had asthma since she was 2. She has a medical plan for school and we are really careful to avoid her triggers (cold weather etc) On Tuesday the heating was broken at school do she had to wear her coat in class. The temperature was 12 degrees. This was from 9am until 1pm. When she came home she said her chest was tight and she felt cold (she never feels the cold) later that night, around 5am she began coughing and had an attack. We controlled it but she is still off school as it wiped her out. I have a meeting with the head on Friday, am I right to be cross and concerned that she was allowed to be kept at school without heating? Thanks in advance.

2 Replies

its a bit tricky, does the plan deal with this specific situation (or even say anything about cold as a trigger, so is she not meant to play outside in cold weather) or is there anything in the plan they didn't do? so did teachers ignore symptoms in the action plan, or was she not allowed to take her inhaler? if so then you definitely have a good reason to be cross! if not its much harder, the school may well be able to argue that they didn't realize it would be a problem with her asthma, or that they thought it would be fixed more quickly than it was, so it might be quite hard to argue your point! its definitely worth discussing this with the head to make sure in similar situations the same does not happen again (it might be worth making the plan so that in unusual situations you are contacted so that you get to be the one to decide if it is going to affect her). good luck! hope your daughter feels better soon!


I guess the simple answer is you will never know since her attack was delayed. 12 degrees is quite mild, its often only that on a spring day - does she usually get unwell at those temperatures? Dont get me wrong, sitting still in that temperature will be chilly without a coat, but Im suprised it would cause an asthma attack. Im very sensitive to cold, but that kind of temperature wouldn't affect me.

I dont think its about right or wrong, just having a conversation with the head so you are both clear about her needs and are on the same page. If that kind of temp sets her off, then obviously they need to know.

Incidentally, it might interest you to know, that if you work in an office environment and the temp falls below 16 degrees, you are entitled to go home or work elsewhere....! ;)



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