School Support for Students with Chronic Medical Conditions



A CEC/DPHMD Collaborative Webinar

Tuesday, Sept. 24
4-5 p.m. ET


As many as 43% of students in the United States are affected by chronic illness, according to current prevalence data. It is likely that a number of children with a long-term illness or lasting effects of an illness may be present in any given classroom.  Education policies designed for students with disabilities are often used in supporting students with chronic illness, but this approach frequently falls short of meeting their unique needs. In this webinar, you will learn about the implications of pediatric chronic illnesses for educational achievement and psychosocial development, both short-term and long-term, and explore how to modify classroom practices to meet the needs of these students. This webinar is intended for preservice and inservice teachers, clinicians, administrators, school counselors, and others  who work with students with chronic illness.

Learning Outcomes:

After completing this program, you will be able to:

  • Describe the educational and psychosocial implications of various pediatric chronic  illnesses
  • Discuss how classroom practices may be modified to better support children with chronic medical conditions
  • Use suggested frameworks to gather educationally relevant information about chronic health issues of children in your classroom

Presented By:

Megan Elam HeadshotMegan Elam is a School Intervention Specialist in the Cancer and Blood Diseases Institute at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) and serves as an instructor at the University of Cincinnati. Dr. Elam is an executive board member of CEC’s Division of Physical, Health, and Multiple Disabilities (DPHMD), chairperson for DPHMD’s Chronic Medical Conditions Committee, and co-chair for the Legislative Committee for the Association of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Educational Specialists (APHOES). Dr. Elam is currently engaged in various research projects and related initiatives to support quality of life for children who are chronically ill, specifically as it relates to school issues and education.

MaryKay IrwinMary Kay Irwin is the Manager of the School Intervention Program in the Cancer and Blood Diseases Institute and in the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC). Dr. Irwin is also an instructor at the University of Cincinnati. Her employment history includes advocacy for adults with disabilities (ARC in Baltimore, Maryland), teaching general and special education, and working for CCHMC as a school intervention coordinator.  Dr. Irwin is the Chair of the Association of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Educational Specialists. Dr. Irwin’s professional contributions focus on quality of life issues for patient with chronic illness with a particular emphasis on educational issues for those with chronic medical conditions.