College warning me of losing my place :( - Fibromyalgia Acti...

Fibromyalgia Action UK

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College warning me of losing my place :(


I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia for just a few months now. I am currently at college doing health and social care level 2, which is a 1 year course. Before I enjoyed on this course I mentioned to the head of this course that I have FMA which can make me unwell at any point, she seemed okay with it. So I was happy to enrol on the course.

I had my tutorial a few weeks ago and was told my attendance was 68% which I was surprised at as I have had 2 separate days off due to migraines and I was off with a bug/virus and was advised by the doctor to stay off college. I am only in college 2.5 days a week. My tutor then told me that I am at risk of being removed off the course, which I think it is unfair as I did tell the college before hand and I am also handing all my assignments on time even though I have had less time to do it in where the students in my class have had 2 weeks.

With having FMA I am also hearing impaired and I have a support worker to take notes for me. As I rely on lip-reading during lesson. So I'm usually warn out by the end of the day.

But my main question is can the college remove me from college knowing that I have a medical condition?

16 Replies

Sorry for the spelling mistakes stupid iPhone keeps changing my words :(

I wouldn't have thought so,try and get a Drs note if they continue to be difficult.Ask for a meeting with someone higher than the head of your course and explain everything to them.Were any notes put on your application form when you enrolled?

Yeah when I filled in my medical form for my course I put it down and told them the medication I'm on.


I think student support can help you and they have to make reasonable allowances for any student with a also seems you are doing everything you need to so I am not sure if they can remove it more that your support staff are not being used when provided do you think? l know lots of support staff have lost work through lack of funding and this is where the problem could lie....maybe ask the question


I am not 100% sure as each college has it's own set of policies and procedures, so they may vary, but they also have a duty of care for their students and also their staff.

If you fully discussed having Fibromyalgia and what this might entail regarding achievements and attendance, I cannot personally see how they can then say you will lose your place. Could you get your GP to send a letter to the Principal explaining the problems you have and that you have always attended when you were able to etc.

Your college should have either Pastoral Care of Welfare for their students and it would be worth speaking to them about your worries as they should approach your situation impartially.

I would be very surprised if the college could enforce taking your place off you, I think you would have a good case for discrimination but I wouldn't know how to pursue this. I would have a word with the CAB (Citizen's Advice Bureau), I am sure they could advise you further on this and your rights etc.

Please let us know how you get on. Wishing you all the best. Here's a hug for you (((hug))) xx

Thank you liberty I will let know how I get on.

Good night

Susan xx

Hidden in reply to Susan20067389

Bless you Susan, please do! Wishing you all the very best, I hope it all works out well for you. Stand your ground, you haven't done anything wrong, you can't help being poorly and if you made this clear at the beginning then the college should take this into account should you be absent etc. xx


Hi Susan, I think you should contact your student support team at college and ask if you have an 'individual learning plan' in place. If not, then you should ask for one ASAP. Any student in FE/HE with any kind of special needs is entitiled to one. Then you should approach your personal tutor and ask for your 'exceptional circumstances' to be taken into consideration at any meetings regarding your attendance or at exam boards. Please make it clear to your tutor that you have been worried about her comments regarding your attendance and that further stress could cause your condition to worsen. Hopefully they will then give you some reassurances. Good luck and keep us posted! Jane x

Susan20067389 in reply to Hidden

Thanks will differently look into it tomorrow when I am in college.

Thanks Jane will keep you all upto date xx

This blog really reminded me of myself I was in the same position 3 years ago studying AAT accountancy. My course was only 1 day a week thank goodness but I approached both my tutors and explained as best as I could about fibro & they were brilliant! They organised extra time for my exams which made a huge difference to me as I rely on wrist splints they also helped with other things & supported me emotionally.

I can't thank them enough as 3 years later & 17 exams I am now qualified and am due to Graduate on the 29th November this year not bad for a 44 yr old wife mum & nana with this horrid illness & others besides.

So please honey try explaining to them get a note from gp if needed I also took into literature which my tutors read with interest. We are all here to support you x

You can do it don't let anyone stop you xxxxx gentle (((((hugs))))) xxx

Hi i am currently doing a diploma level 4, just to let you know if you get a letter from your GP you may be able to have extra time in exams. I have a 2 hour exam in January. I hope everything goes well and you remain on your course.

Hi my college work is thru assessments not exams. I get extra time anyway as I am dyslexic. Thanks anyway. My college is making me get a doctors letter to prove I am hearing impaired as they don't accept my audio graph or that i have NHS hearing aids.

Susan xx

Hidden in reply to Susan20067389

I suppose these days Susan the college has to be extra careful and get medical clarification on all conditions, hearing and otherwise. By getting a letter from your GP this will prove that you do in fact use and need hearing aids as opposed to just wearing them. They have to be so careful. It is harsh though for you to have to go through all this.

Hopefully soon the college will realise how difficult it has been for you and offer you their full support.

Have you spoken to your tutor about the attendance issue, perhaps even having a word with the Principal might be a good idea. Hubby and I had a situation regarding our youngest son's health last year pending an operation, we got in touch with the Principal as we didn't have any joy with his tutor, the Principal was really helpful, understanding and fully supportive. Might be worth a try for you.

(((hug))) xxx

Wenjay in reply to Susan20067389

I work with the deaf and have done so for many years. i routinely come up against issues with Schools/colleges not accepting my students hearing Impairment. Make sure they have fully taken on board the implications that can have for you. I noticed that you have a note taker. As that provision is in place i am surprised they are querying your deafness, unless you got the note-taker because of your dyslexia. I dont know how old you are but it may be worth you contacting the National Deaf Childrens Society as they provide support for young people. On their website under Family support is a link to a factsheet you can download called 'Your deaf child from 16+ :A guide to educational and training support in England, Wales and Northern Ireland'. it covers many of the issues you may experience and gives you pointers of where and how to deal with them. You are also able to join the NDCS and maybe able to get in contact with others in a similar situation as you.

Hope this is of use and wishing you all the best


I also have a NHS hearing aid wonder if it has anything to do with Fibro I also have Glaucoma, maybe its my age though I,m 51, just seems odd everything was diagnosed around the same time including IBS! We have journals and essays and also exams, I am doing a Counselling diploma hoping to become a volunteer Counsellor as i can no longer work. I did Health & Social care GCSE a few years ago, found it really interesting, stick in and stand up for your rights. Good luck with everything.

Hi I'm just giving you an update to what is happening at college. I have taken Jane's advice and I saw student services yesterday. As I left college at lunch time due to a death in my family. I emailed college this morning to tell them I wasn't going to be in as I had a migraine and lower back pain. I have copied the email so you can see what I have put:-

Hi Susan, Kerry,

I am really sorry but I am unable to come into college today.

As I was up during the night with a migraine, this morning I have lower back pain.

I am really sorry!

The death of my aunty has brought back the memory's of my mam's death, as it has only been a year.

I understand you are concerned about my attendance and I have been panicking and getting upset about it over the half term. Which has caused small flare ups.

I don't want to keep getting upset about it as it may cause my fibromyalgia to worsen.

Here is some information on fibromyalgia.


What do you think? I already know they can't remove me from college as it would be classed as discrimination however I have not told them that.

I would like to thanks everyone for there comments its nice to know I can ask a question and someone knows problems we can come across with having FMA.

Thanks again xx

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