A qualitative investigation into the management of diabetic learners in South African schools

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dc.contributor.author Moore, Mark Johnathan
dc.date.accessioned 2014-11-03T08:47:58Z
dc.date.available 2014-11-03T08:47:58Z
dc.date.issued 2014-11-03
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10539/15818
dc.description Submitted in fulfillment for the requirement of the degree of Master of Education in the School of Education, Faculty of Humanities, University of the Witwatersrand 3 March 2014 en_ZA
dc.description.abstract This research was sparked by a personal encounter with diabetes. My middle child was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes mellitus (diabetes) four years ago. None of his teachers had any idea of how to assist us as parents in the daily management of this disease. The purpose of this investigation then, began initially with this background in mind in an attempt to discover how the management of diabetes occurs in public schools across South Africa. Literature indicates that there is apparent widespread screening to detect the symptoms and the onset of diabetes in other countries across the world which reveals that both type 1 and type 2diabetes are on the increase. The respondents in the research process consisted of principals, teachers, peers of the diabetic learners and the diabetics themselves. The investigative process required the respondents to complete a questionnaire as well as being part of an interview process to determine the major outcomes of the study. These interviews were audiotaped. The outcomes of the investigative process included examining the daily routines of the diabetic. The results of the investigation revealed that in the context of the South African situation concerning learners suffering from diabetes, basic knowledge about the disease is limited to the extent that teachers and peers of the diabetic learner are ill-informed and this is as a result of a lack of communication in the entirety of the management process of diabetic learners at schools in this country. Diabetes is generally a “mystery” to most people not in contact with it on a daily basis and many people are confused by the glucose monitoring and the insulin injecting process as a “foreign method” of medicine. The results of the investigative study indicate that diabetic children need to have a management plan for school but significantly more important is the assistance, understanding and communication that is required on a daily basis by a team of caregivers consisting of parents, educators and their peers if diabetics are to feel and form part of an integrated South African education system. Also, the study reveals that the training of certain individuals to take specific care of diabetics would assist these children. Camps that diabetics can attend also assist their child in taking most of the responsibility for their own lives and the diabetic groups that parents can join to share similar experiences with other adults also proved effective in the practice of sound management. For diabetics, friendships fostered and the “buddy” system in the classroom where a friend could identify dangerous situations proved invaluable. Policy makers need also to heed the call of re-visiting policy decisions of the past in order to serve the plight of the diabetic learner and increase the awareness of diabetes in our schools. en_ZA
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.title A qualitative investigation into the management of diabetic learners in South African schools en_ZA
dc.type Thesis en_ZA


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