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Johns Hopkins University

Kids with Cancer Still Need School: The Providers Role

Johns Hopkins University via Coursera

Overview

This course will help you understand and address the challenges parents and families face regarding schooling after a cancer diagnosis. .

When a child is diagnosed with cancer, families can be overwhelmed learning about and managing this new and frightening reality. As they adjust to the new normal of ongoing treatment, school may be the farthest thing from their mind. However, as their oncology health care provider, you have a critical role in starting conversations about schooling. Even for your youngest patients, it is important to talk with parents and caregivers about schooling issues early and often.

This course gives you easy access to Roadmaps that help parents learn and take action so their child can access schooling supports for which they are eligible.

The modules will give you the skills and resources needed in order to support parents to use the information provided in the parent-informed Roadmaps. We hope that completing this course will help you make small changes in your everyday practice that can make a bit change in how well parents can advocate for their child's schooling needs.

Syllabus

  • Introduction and Pre-Assessment
    • Your first step in this course is to take the required pre-test. At the conclusion of the pre-test you'll receive a code that you will input in order to move on to the first content module. Note - the pretest is delivered via qualtrics survey software. Some users may have a spam filter setting that blocks qualtrics. If you do not see the test please check your spam filter settings.
  • Understanding the Need: Uncovering the Misconceptions
    • A surprising finding in our research with families affected by pediatric cancer is that providers and parents have quite different perceptions about communication around school related topics such as neurocognitive impacts of cancer or its treatment. This module will introduce you to misconceptions about parent/provider communication and share identified knowledge gaps associated with the school related challenges of children affected by pediatric cancer. This information will help you understand this under-recognized need and why improving parent-provider communication about schooling related issues is critical.
  • Understanding and Communicating about Educationally Relevant Effects: Listening to Parents
    • As a provider you are aware that cancer or its treatment can confer risks for neurocognitive impacts. Such impacts and other late effects can contribute to immediate and long-term schooling challenges. This module describes some less-well-known relationships between specific treatments and late-effect risks. It provides detailed recommendations for how to foster frequent, brief conversations with parents to help ensure they are aware of school related risks. This is important because parents are a critical advocate for their child and a necessary first step is that they become aware that they may need to play this role. Your communication with parents about these issues is vital to the process.
  • Understanding Schooling – Available Supports: The Education Landscape
    • You didn’t go to medical school to teach parents about schooling challenges – but it can still be valuable to have a basic understanding of the vocabulary and processes that parents need to help support their children to succeed in school. This module provides an overview of the accommodations and services children affected by cancer are most likely to need. It clarifies what actions you can take to help as parents work with schools to determine if their child is eligible to receive them.
  • Using Roadmaps to Support Families: Becoming Familiar and Planning Dissemination
    • The previous modules have laid out the arguments for why parents need more support and they have given you important background information about schooling challenges, eligibility for services, and how to talk with parents about these issues. In this module, we provide detail the Back-to-School Roadmaps our team has created. The Roadmaps were created collaboratively with input from affected families and other stakeholders. You know from Module 2 how to have brief conversations with parents about schooling concerns – pairing those conversations with these Roadmaps can prepare parents to support their children to succeed in school. As you complete the Modules, we hope you take time to review the Roadmaps on your own and plan for how to begin having brief conversations with parents as you provide them with these tools.
  • Post-assessment
    • Your final step in this course is to take the required post-test. At the conclusion of the post-test you'll receive a code that you will input in order to complete this CME. Note - the posttest is delivered via qualtrics survey software. Some users may have a spam filter setting that blocks qualtrics. If you do not see the test please check your spam filter settings.

Taught by

Kathy Ruble and Lisa Jacobson

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