COPING WITH SEIZURES AND EPILEPSY: WHAT DO YOU TELL THE SCHOOL?

In the best of all possible worlds, clearly you should tell the school about the seizure. Unfortunately, this is not the best of worlds. Prejudice, misconceptions, overconcern, and fear of seizures still exist. Therefore, there is no simple correct answer to the question. In general, there is no need to tell the school about a single seizure. There is nothing school officials can do, or should do, about your child. They need not watch him more carefully unless he is participating in gymnastics that would place him at heights or is swimming unsupervised. They should not restrict him from playing on sports teams or at recess. He should be allowed to go on field trips and to do everything the other children do. Since there is nothing special school personnel need to do after a single seizure, it’s probably not necessary to let them know about it. What or whether you tell the school about the seizure may depend on your assessment of the teacher, the principal, and the school nurse and how you think they will react to the information. If your son or daughter does have another seizure, and if it occurs in school, you will wish that you had told them if you did not. After a second or third tonic-clonic seizure, or with epilepsy, it’s a different matter, to be discussed later.
This same philosophy applies to day care and to babysitters. Individuals acting as surrogate parents should have the same information and philosophy about overprotection as you have.
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