Children with cancer are bullied and left behind at school

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Kieran, pictured with sister Lauren, missed eight months of school due to cancer treatment.

Many children with cancer feel they are being left out when they return to primary school following treatment, according to a new survey by children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent.

More than a third of parents of those with cancer said that their child is bullied or teased at school because of the effects of treatment, such as hair loss or weight gain from steroid treatment. Parents also expressed fears about the support their children receive when they return to school, with 36 per cent saying that their child did not get the extra help they needed.

36 per cent of parents thought their child did not receive the extra help they needed to keep up with school during their treatment, the research found. More than a third of parents also felt that they did not get enough say in how their child’s illness was communicated to other pupils.

The charity’s Chief Executive, Lorraine Clifton, has called on the Government, local authorities and schools to put in place the support children with cancer need in hospital, at home and at school. “No child should have to miss out on their education because they’ve had cancer – and it’s distressing to hear that some are teased and even bullied on their return to school”, she said.

The report into the impact of cancer on children’s primary school education is published today to coincide with Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. It can be downloaded at:
http://www.clicsargent.org.uk/nochildwithcancerleftout

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