HIV and AIDS are not in themselves illnesses with their own set of symptoms, but rather they facilitate the development of infections and tumours because of the lack of immunity. the rate at which HIV/AIDS develops and the ways in which it affects the individual will differ from case to case.

It is important to understand that HIV cannot be transmitted by coughing, sneezing, touching or hugging. Children are far more at risk from catching a range of infectious diseased from each other. It is important for schools to minimise the risk of spreading infectious diseases by using agreed precautions and attending to proper hygiene for all staff and pupils.

Key Characteristics:
+ Have frequent and severe bacterial infections
+ Be particularly susceptible to all childhood illnesses and infections
+ Experience loss of weight
+ Have a slow rate of growth
+ Develop rashes and other skin conditions
+ Lack energy and appear pale and lethargic

Support Strategies

  • If you know a child has HIV/ AIDS you may need to:
  • Ensure the child lives as normal a school life as possible
  • Liaise closely with the parents or carers about their knowledge of the disease and possible outcomes
  • Provide training in appropriate procedures and related advice for staff
  • Inform parents immediately of any infectious disease in the school
  • Suggest activities and provide work for children off school for periods of time to retain their engagement with schooling