Provincial government advocacy
On October 24, 2017, Ontario issued new requirements for all school boards to have policies and procedures in place to support students with certain medical conditions, including diabetes. Policy and Program Memorandum (PPM) 161 came into effect in September 2018.
While PPM 161 requires school board to ensure that all students with diabetes have a care plan, there is no requirement for staff support where children need help with tasks associated with daily management (for example, blood sugar checks or insulin administration). That means parents and students will continue to rely on staff volunteers. If you think this should change, make your voice heard:
- Write a letter to Ontario’s Minister of Education. Let her know why designated staff is an essential component of a policy on medical conditions in schools. Tell your story: What support does your child need? Who provides it now? What would happen if your child did not have this support at school?
- Be sure to copy your MPP. You may also want to copy the head of your diabetes clinic, your local children’s hospital, and/or your school board.
The Canadian Paediatric Society and Diabetes Canada produced this Advocacy Tip Sheet to help parents advocate for full implementation of PPM 161.
Provincial government contacts
- Contact information for Ontario’s MPPs
- Hon. Lisa Thompson, Minister of Education: Minister.firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ontario school board policies on type 1 diabetes: School board policies on type 1 diabetes vary widely across the country—from fairly well-developed policies to none at all. A good starting point is to find out whether your school board has a policy, and what it covers.
- Diabetes at School (2016): Comprehensive website with training resources for all level of school support. Includes a template Individual Care Plan. Produced by the Canadian Paediatric Society, Diabetes Canada and the Canadian Pediatric Endocrine Group.
- Managing type 1 diabetes in school: Recommendations for policy and practice, Canadian Paediatric Society, October 2014, position statement
- Students Living with Diabetes in School, Diabetes Canada, July 2013, position statement
- How to Make Canadian Schools Diabetes-Safe, by Elizabeth Moreau, Insulin Nation, December 2015
Share your story
What has the school experience been like for your child or teen? What changes would you like to see in the support your child or teen receives? By sharing your story, you will demonstrate the need for comprehensive policy and help strengthen our advocacy efforts. Please take a few moments to complete our survey(s). Your comments may be used on this website, but will not be attributed. While we wish we could hear from everyone, because this is a provincial advocacy effort, these surveys are only for people in Ontario.
- Survey for parents of Ontario elementary school students (aged 3 to 12 years)
- Survey for parents of Ontario intermediate/high school students (aged 12 through 18 years)
Last updated: November 2018