In accordance with Ryan’s Law (Ensuring Asthma Friendly Schools), 2015 and Policy/Program Memorandum (PPM) No. 161: Supporting Children and Students with Prevalent Medical Conditions (Anaphylaxis, Asthma, Diabetes, and/or Epilepsy) in Schools, 2018 school boards must establish and maintain a policy to support students with asthma. The purpose of this resource is to outline activities and implementation tips to create asthma friendly schools at the board level.
Establish a process to identify students with asthma.
Add a question to all registration forms that elicits whether or not the student has been told by a health provider that they have asthma and/or uses asthma medication.
Identifying and supporting a student with asthma is a collaborative effort
The Plan of Care is a form that helps empower and support students with prevalent medical conditions. This form requires participation from the school boards, school staff, educators, parents/guardians and students. Policy/Program Memorandum (PPM) No. 161: Supporting Children and Students with Prevalent Medical Conditions (Anaphylaxis, Asthma, Diabetes, and/or Epilepsy) in Schools, 2018 requires that school boards develop a Plan of Care to help identify students with asthma.
Easy access to asthma medication for students with asthma.
Ensuring students with asthma have quick and easy access their reliever asthma inhaler (usually a blue inhaler) allows them to treat and relieve their asthma symptoms promptly. Most students age seven years or older are capable of deciding when medication is required and have the skills to administer the medication properly.
For students who are unable to carry their own inhaler, the medication should be available within easy reach, such as the classroom or main office.
A process for handling worsening asthma.
Ensure that the school board has a policy that clearly outlines the process for handling worsening asthma and asthma attacks within your schools.
A mechanism to identify and reduce common asthma triggers within the schools.
Advocate and provide support to identify and reduce common asthma triggers in your schools.
Support for students with asthma to participate in physical activity and play.
Advocate and support students with asthma to participate in all activities, including physical activities and outdoor play.
Opportunities for asthma education (i.e., school staff, parents/guardians, students and volunteers).
Advocate and provide support for all members of the school community to participate in asthma education initiatives and asthma awareness activities.
Collaborate with others (i.e., health care providers, public health, parents/guardians and community partners) to create asthma friendly settings.
Board delegates should meet with administrators and health care professionals to discuss policy changes, current practices and updates on asthma information annually.