Do services to support education of children and teenagers with chronic health conditions help to engage them in more school activities

School kids

Chronic health conditions in children and adolescents can have profound impacts on education, well‐being and health. They are described as non‐communicable illnesses that are prolonged in duration, do not resolve spontaneously, and rarely cured completely. Due to variations in the definition of chronic health conditions and how they are measured prevalence estimates vary considerably and have been reported to be as high as 44% in children and adolescents. Of young people with a chronic health condition, an estimated 5% are affected by severe conditions characterised by limitations to daily activities impacting their ability to attend school. School attendance is important for academic and social skill development as well as well‐being. When children and adolescents are absent from school due to a chronic health condition, school engagement can be affected. Disengagement from school is associated with poorer academic achievement, social‐emotional functioning and career choices. Education support services for children and adolescents with chronic health conditions aim to prevent disengagement from school, education and learning during periods where their illness caused them to miss school. However, there is limited evidence on the effectiveness of educational support interventions at improving school engagement and educational/learning outcomes for children and adolescents with chronic health conditions.

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