Alma Morgan, M.Ed., an Educational Consultant for ASK and the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Department at the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, hears questions like these every day, and she understands parents’ concerns. “Many children with chronic illness often have late effects of treatment that include: attention difficulties, short term memory challenges, and slower processing speed,” she explains. “In addition, we are seeing more anxiety than ever, for children, teens and even their parents.”
While Morgan is hopeful that teachers and administrators have been working hard to create an effective and meaningful curriculum for online learning, she acknowledges that there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all program, especially for students with chronic and complex medical challenges.
Parents may feel a sense of powerlessness about this new mode of teaching and learning, and wonder whether it will work for their child. However, there are things they can do to help support their child’s unique needs:
“Parents are going to have to be proactive and work closely with the teachers and school personnel to see that their child’s unique needs will be met in this new instructional setting,” says Morgan. “Now, more than ever, parents need to be actively involved.”