Children with complex medical needs have the same right to participate in early learning experiences as their peers. Lifestart has developed a pathway for learning for all children.
What does the evidence tell us?
Children learn best when doing everyday things, in everyday places. Please read the section Best Practice Guidelines – Quality Area 2: Inclusion for more information.
Children with complex medical needs have the same right to participate in learning as their peers.
What does medically complex mean?
Medically complex is a term used to describe a child requiring ongoing specialist care. This might include a child who:
- Requires frequent medical support, beyond routine checkups.
- Requires specialist equipment, e.g., wheelchair, tube feeding, walkers or standing frames.
- Requires prolonged or frequent hospitalisation.
- Requires intensive medical home care.
- Has experienced prolonged trauma.
Convention on the Rights of the Child (pdf)
All children have the right to an education.
Setting up for success – A “can” versus “can’t” approach.
Children with complex medical needs can thrive within learning environments with appropriate planning and support.
Planning for success.
- Understanding what is important to the child and family, including, family goals.
- Development of person-centred tools (e.g., one-page-profile) to communicate strengths, interests and supports.
- A collaborative approach to promote consistency across all natural environments.
A whole team approach.
- Collaboration with therapists to understand reasonable and suitable adjustments that reflect the child and family goals.
- Development of an Individual Education Plan.
- Collaboration with medical specialists to development an individualised medical care plan.
Pathways to Early Childhood Education.
- Attending centre tours.
- Transition planning including collaboration with families, and the team around the child.
- Identify barriers to access.
- Supporting flexible pathways to learning.
Promote child engagement and participation within learning.
- A collaborative approach to promote educator capacity.
- Collaboration with the NSW/ACT Inclusion Support Agency or DIP Sector Capacity Building
- Development of a Working Together Agreement.
Ongoing success in learning environments.
- Family check-in to explore the child’s engagement within learning environments.
- Collaborate with educators to address any individual needs.