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Daycare and Preschool

There are many things to think about and plan for when your young child has asthma. It is important to learn as much as you can about asthma, and how your daycare or preschool fits into your child's healthy life.

Learn more about asthma in general.

Working With Your Child's School

In order to keep your child's asthma under control at school, parents need to prepare themselves, their child and school staff. Here's what you MUST do before school starts:

1. Make sure you child's daycare or preschool environment is as asthma-friendly as possible. This includes making sure that it is a non-smoking facility 24 hours a day, and that other common asthma triggers are avoided. Child care providers can use the following assessment tool and training to make their room/building safe and healthy for children with asthma and allergies.

2. Make a written Asthma Action Plan with your doctor or asthma educator, and give a copy to your child's daycare/school. If the plan changes, be sure to give the daycare/school staff a new one, and review the changes with them.

3. Make sure the daycare/school has two emergency numbers to reach you.

4. Schedule a conference with your child's teacher/other staff to talk about your child's asthma.

By working with school staff, you can help make sure your child stays healthy at daycare/school. Here is a checklist you can use to make sure you don't forget things that can be important.

  • Visit your child's doctor or health care professional, and fill out a new Asthma Action Plan. Give a copy to each of the child's teachers, school nurse, school secretary and after school activity staff. At the doctor's visit, be sure to talk about your child's:
  • Get all medication/health forms from the school – don't forget the ones for sports or other activities. Fill them out completely and turn them in to the school.
  • Make sure all medicines, including inhalers and nebulizers, are full and/or in working order. Label all medications and asthma tools with child's name and classroom.
  • Arrange a meeting with child's teacher and other school staff, including child's after school day care teachers, if needed. Include the child in the meeting if possible. At the meeting with the school/daycare staff, discuss:
    • Basics of asthma
    • Your child's Asthma Management/Action Plan. Make sure staff knows what to do and how to do it.
    • Warning signs for your child's asthma
    • Your child's triggers, such as animals in the classroom, playing hard at gym class
    • Medications and access to medications. There is a law in Michigan that allows older students to carry their inhalers with them at all times
    • Asthma tools, such as peak flow meters, spacers, and nebulizers
    • Missing school and making up school work

If it is hard for you to talk about asthma with your child's teachers and other school staff, ask the school nurse or your doctor or asthma educator for help. If possible:

Some parts adapted from "How Asthma-Friendly is Your School?" National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Asthma Education and Prevention Program School Asthma Education Subcommittee