Type I diabetes CBSE students to get break while writing their board exams

Type I diabetes CBSE students to get break while writing their board exams

Chennai, Feb 17:When students with Type 1 diabetes in CBSE stream write their board exams, they will be eligible to take a snack break an hour or ninety minutes into the test to prevent low sugar reactions. While a notification to this effect would be released shortly, the move has been welcomed by educators and healthcare professionals.

There are an estimated two lakh people with Type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile diabetes, in the country, of which about half would be children, said V. Mohan, chairman, Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialities Centre.

“Children with Type 1 diabetes take about three to four injections of insulin per day — and taking one injection half an hour before breakfast, and a mid-morning snack is very important to prevent low-sugar reactions. Low sugar could cause sweating, trembling, confusion, giddiness and in extreme cases, even coma. This could lead to huge difficulties while writing exams,” he said. Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which there is total insulin deficiency — the pancreas produce little or no insulin.

According to the International Diabetes Federation’s Atlas 2015, India has the second-highest number of children with diabetes in the world. The Atlas estimated the country had 70,200 children in the 0 – 14 age group. In Chennai, in the ICMR Registry of People with Diabetes with Young Age at Onset there are 1,660 young people (less than 25 years) with type 1 diabetes, Dr. Mohan said. “This is a fantastic decision and should be extended to all Boards and colleges as well,” he said.

The CBSE already has in place several measures for students with disabilities. While students who have learning disabilities, including dyslexia, are given exemption from subjects such as Language and Mathematics, while students who are visually-impaired are given a separate question paper and are allowed scribes.

The evaluation process, too, is tweaked for these students. The parent of a 10-year-old girl in Class V at a city CBSE school said this was a welcome decision.

“If she misses having her snack, her sugar becomes low. Mostly, she manages by herself, but we constantly have to tell teachers about her condition and ask for a little time. With this move, she will be able to eat properly and study better too,” said the resident of Kolathur.

 Students are usually registered for the Class XII board examinations when they are in Class XI by CBSE schools in the city.

“We mention in the list if the student is a slow learner or has a physical disability and when this allowance for diabetic students comes into place, this will be included in the list as well so that the board can make arrangements for the break they are eligible for at their examination centres,” said a principal from a city school.