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Informing Child's Class of Cancer DX

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  • Informing Child's Class of Cancer DX

    My daughter is in active treatment for ALL. She's a preschooler who has been okay'ed to attend pre-K this year. We would like to write a letter to the parents in her class informing them of her diagnosis, that she's in active treatment and asking for their assistance in keeping her healthy by taking a moment to inform us of any communicable diseases in their house, even if my daughter's classmate may not have contracted it. Are there any parents who have done something similar and might have a sample letter they can share? Any tips or advice on how to best share the news?

    Thanks.

  • #2
    Hi there, I'm so sorry to hear about your daughter's diagnosis.

    I found this sample letter on www.cancercouncil.com.au which was pretty helpful with various letters to school communities. This is written from a school representative, but I'm sure you can easily edit it from your perspective. Have you been in contact with your daughter's teachers about her diagnosis? It may be helpful to work with them on this to inform the classmates' parents.

    "Dear parent/guardian,
    I am writing to advise you that our school currently has a student who is receiving medical treatment for cancer. The student is actively involved in the school community and recovering from treatments and their side effects.
    As this student has a compromised immune system and is more vulnerable to disease, it is important that you do not send your children to school if they are unwell. For example, if your child has an infectious disease (such as the measles, chickenpox or flu), your child should stay at home until no longer contagious.
    I would also appreciate it if you would notify me immediately if your child has an infectious disease. This will allow me to notify the parents of our student with cancer, if necessary.
    We appreciate your cooperation. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.
    Yours sincerely,
    School principal/teacher"

    I've heard from a lot of schools and parents that it's helpful to discuss with the students about the diagnosis and what cancer is (in an age appropriate way). It helps a lot with supporting the patient while they're in school during or after treatment and helps to avoid confusion and misunderstandings about illness that the other students may have. That could also be something that you could work with your daughter's teachers or the school nurse or counselor to talk to the students.

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