8 resources for when your child goes back to school after treatment

If your child has finished their cancer treatment, you might be wondering how they will transition back into full time study.

Your child may be looking forward to the social aspect of school … although, they may be nervous too.  Perhaps you’re keen for a new sense of routine, and school seems like a good way to add some structure post-treatment.  You might also be wondering what information or support your child’s teacher will need.

Here are some helpful resources if your child is about to start back at school, or just needs some extra support adjusting.

A teacher’s perspective

Format: A personal story and a fact sheet with a care plan.

About: Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Foundation in the UK share personal experiences by teachers of having a child with cancer in their class and the issues they faced along the way. Afterwards they suggest a care plan for schools to implement.


Returning to school after cancer treatment

Format: A detailed webpage by the American Cancer Society

About: Covers what the school should know, common challenges when your child returns to school, talking with other children about cancer, managing physical problems at school and what to do if your child is having trouble with schoolwork.


Thinking ahead: Your guide to school, study and work/ A guide for young people who have had cancer

Format: A 43-page eBook by the Peter MacCullum Cancer Centre

About: Parents of teenagers or young adults can share this resource with them. This engaging guide full of humorous animations aims to help young adults re-engage with their school and study.

The Ronald McDonald learning program

Format: Website with various pages featuring a range of programs

About: The Ronald McDonald Learning Program for parents, students and teachers helps children with serious illness catch up on their missed education, following lengthy hospital stays and absence from school.


Health conditions chronic illness and school

Format: A detailed factsheet by The Royal Hospital for Melbourne.

About: Covers areas such as: effects of chronic illness on schooling, how schools can support students, sharing information, student health support plan and making modifications and reasonable adjustments.


 Moving forward: school

Format: YouTube videos from medical experts and young adult survivors

About: If you are a parent to a teenager or young adult, these videos by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the LIVESTRONG Foundation can give them tools for handling their schoolwork and staying connecting classmates.

Orla’s Story – I didn’t fit in

Format: A one-page personal story written by a teenager

About: Orla was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia aged 10. Now 14, she shares her experience with returning to school and the challenges she faced with friends, homework and exams.


Returning to school or study

Format YouTube clips of personal stories with advice and tips from CanTeen

About: This webpage features two YouTube videos as well as advice such as how to get prepared for your return to school or study, adjusting your expectations and where to get face-to-face advice.

Cancer Advisor has a range of resources on school, but we are always looking for more content. Register now to contribute content, recommend a resource, or share your personal story.

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