What duties does a school have to support pupils with medical conditions?

Under the Children and Families Act 2014 schools and education settings have a statutory duty to make arrangements to support pupils with medical conditions. The aim is to ensure that children and young people with medical conditions affecting their physical or mental health or both are properly supported in school so that they can play a full and active role in school life and achieve their potential.

When the change in legislation was introduced statutory guidance was published for the governing bodies of all schools, whether they are maintained by the local authority, academies or free schools. The statutory guidance applies to all education settings for children and young people up to the age of sixteen and is good practice guidance for post-16 settings.

Schools must be able to offer appropriate support for pupils to minimise the impact that their condition has on their school life and be aware and respond to the impact school life has on a pupils’ health.

Schools should ensure that pupils with medical conditions have an individual healthcare plan, which is felt appropriate and proportionate to their medical condition.

You can find the statutory guidance by clicking here Supporting pupils with medical conditions

In the majority of cases, schools can support pupils in these circumstances effectively. However, in some situations, the pupil’s medical condition is such that a medical professional may identify that their condition is going to impact their ability to attend school. Department For Education (DFE) guidance outlines how in more exceptional cases support can be made available to minimise disruption to a child’s education where their medical needs cannot be met by the school

Last updated: 1/12/2023