What is the Canadian Diabetes Association’s position on kids with diabetes in school?

Students living with diabetes have the right to be full and equal participants in school and all school-related activities without the fear of being excluded, stigmatized, or discriminated against.

School boards should develop and communicate a comprehensive diabetes management policy that includes the roles and responsibilities of the students living with diabetes, their parents/caregivers and school personnel according to the Canadian Diabetes Association’s Standards of Care for Students with Diabetes in School.

School principals should work with each student living with diabetes, their parents/caregivers and healthcare professionals to develop and communicate to school personnel and Individual Care Plan (ICP) that complies with the student’s prescribed diabetes management regimen.  Each ICP should be comprised of a daily management plan and a diabetes emergency plan.

Schools should permit students living with diabetes to monitor their blood glucose (sugar), administer insulin and treat low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) and high blood glucose (hyperglycemia) conveniently and safely wherever and whenever required.

School personnel should be trained to recognize emergency situations and to respond appropriately according to the student’s individual care plan (ICP). School personnel should be trained to administer glucagon in the event of a severe hypoglycemic reaction.

Read the CDA's full position statement on students living with diabetes at school, including background and rationale.

What resources does the Canadian Diabetes Association have related to the health and safety of kids with diabetes in school?

  • Diabetes@School is a national initiative developed by the Canadian Paediatric Society, in partnership with the Canadian Diabetes Association and the Canadian Pediatric Endocrine Group. The website features bilingual training resources for use by educators, school boards, and parents of children with diabetes. Topics include understanding blood sugars, food and insulin, physical activity and  type 1 diabetes, and communication between home and school. The site also features an Individual Care Plan template,  which details all aspects of a student’s diabetes care while at school.

Are there provinces in Canada with provincial policies or guidelines that set out minimum standards of care for students with diabetes?

The following provinces have provincial policies or guidelines which support children with type 1 diabetes:

Does the Canadian Diabetes Association’s support the administration of glucagon in school?

Severe hypoglycemia in the school setting is rare but it is important that staff understand how to respond quickly.  Severe hypoglycemia is an emergency situation and often requires the administration of glucagon.

The Canadian Diabetes Association believes that school personnel should be trained to administer glucagon according to a student’s Individual Care Plan (ICP).

Do you have any other questions?

Please send them to advocacy@diabetes.ca.