Communicating with your child's school about their lupus

Lupus Foundation of America

Resource Content

Building a good working relationship with the school and your child's teachers is a good start. If lupus is affecting your child's academic performance, the school may be required by federal law to create a 504 plan or an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). These are formal documents used by school systems to ensure that children can succeed educationally despite the challenges of disability or disease. You can ask your school's principal if the school has an IEP coordinator or talk to your child's teacher to discuss the best options for your child.

Your child’s teachers and leaders of organized activities should be made aware of the effects of lupus. 

The most common issues that may need to be addressed include:
  • Changes in concentration or memory
  • Missed assignments due to absences for care or illness
  • Reduced ability to take part in physical education classes
  • The need to limit sun exposure
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Altered appearance from medication side effects and/or disease symptoms
  • Infections, particularly if the child does not respond well to vaccinations

Be your child’s advocate at school by helping teachers and staff understand the complications of lupus, and what is needed for your child to keep up with school assignments. An excellent resource to share with your child’s teachers and classmates is Loopy Lupus Helps Tell Scott’s Story About a Disease Called Lupus. This children’s picture book was written by a third-grade class and their teacher, and is available through the LFA’s online lupus shop.

Medically reviewed on