News and Updates

Understanding Sickle Cell: Essential Guide for Teachers


For the SCD Warriors starting school:

School is about to begin and along with your medical make sure teachers are aware about sickle cell awareness. Students with sickle cell disease may:

1) Need to go to the school nurse’s office and take medication to help manage pain.

2) Need to drink water throughout the day to avoid dehydration, which increases sickling of red blood cells.

3) Can be tired in class and need occasional

 rests from classroom activities.

4) Need to have classroom air temperature adjusted to avoid becoming overheated or too #cold, which can trigger episodes of pain.

5. Experience symptoms that require immediate medical attention such as severe pain, chest pain, breathing difficulties, fever, jaundice or paleness, extreme fatigue, swelling of hands and feet, severe headaches, seizures, and other neurologic symptoms (such as sudden vision changes, slurred speech, weakness, or inability to move any part of the body, or loss of consciousness.)


What Teachers Can Do:

1) Students with sickle cell disease may miss class time or be absent for doctor visits or hospital stays. Give these students special consideration regarding missed instruction, assignments, and testing.

2) Chronic fatigue or pain can make some students appear that they are not motivated to learn. Knowing the #student well can help you make a proper assessment.

3) Kids and teens with sickle cell disease may not be able to play contact sports or participate in strenuous exercise — check with their parents. Otherwise, encourage your students with sickle cell disease to participate in moderate physical exercise and other school activities.

4) Allow your student to carry a bottle of water and take bathroom breaks.

5) Allow breaks from instruction and activities when necessary.

6) Avoid outdoor activities when it’s very hot or very cold.

7) Have a plan in place in case your students experience any symptoms that require immediate medical attention.

Let’s work together to ensure inclusivity, support, and equal opportunities for all students, including those living with sickle cell disease.


#SickleCellAwareness #InclusionMatters #SupportForAllStudents



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