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Diabetes Canada recently welcomed the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education recent Policy Statement: Supporting Students with Potentially Life-Threatening Medical Conditions (e.g., allergies, asthma, diabetes, epilepsy) in Saskatchewan Schools.

“This has been an important advocacy priority for our organization and volunteers, and we are pleased to see the government take action with an official Policy Statement,” says Joan King, Director of Government Relations and Advocacy with Diabetes Canada.

Parents and guardians expect children to be full and equal participants in all aspects of school life. However, for many children with diabetes, they are sometimes left out of a full school experience or placed in vulnerable circumstances. To prevent long-term complications and emergency situations, students with diabetes must balance medication, including insulin, food, and activity throughout the school day. With support from school personnel, most students can manage their diabetes independently. However, some students are unable to perform diabetes management tasks and may require assistance to administer insulin, monitor blood sugar, or supervise food intake and activity.

“As a parent of a child living with type 1 diabetes, I’m thrilled to see our government take this step as it’s important that all children with diabetes are afforded the same protections and given the same opportunities to succeed, no matter where they live or attend school,” says Kellie Biden, Saskatchewan-based mom of a child living with type 1 diabetes.

The new policy recognizes that schools have a duty to accommodate the health and safety needs of students living with diabetes and includes Diabetes Canada’s Guidelines for the Care of Students Living with Diabetes at School as a guide for school divisions when developing or updating their administrative procedures. 

“This is an important milestone in the ongoing advocacy work in this area as it now means all provinces in Canada have a formal standard of care for students with type 1 diabetes at school, including several jurisdictions that are aligned with our recommended guidelines,” says King.

A  comparison of each policy, standards, or guidelines across the provinces can be found here.

Category Tags: Advocacy & Policy;

Region: National