Managing Asthma in Elementary and Middle Schools: Adherence to Federal Laws and National Guidelines

Ethan J. Schilling, Ph.D.

Western Carolina University


Stacey Neuharth-Pritchett, Ph.D.

University of Georgia


Yvette Q. Getch, Ph.D.

Western Kentucky University


A Michele Lease, Ph.D.

University of Georgia


The current study examined teacher-reported asthma management practices in school and adherence to federal guidelines for students with asthma.  593 kindergarten-eighth grade teachers completed surveys regarding compliance with federal laws and policies, information-seeking behavior, asthma-related professional development, and asthma management practices. The extent to which asthma services varied as a function of adherence to federal policy statements or teacher characteristics was also examined.  Results indicated a small percentage of teachers reported students with asthma had Individualized Education Plans or 504 plans.  Teachers reported medication policies were in place for students with asthma, consistent with national guidelines, but a limited number of students with asthma were reportedly allowed to self-administer medications. Teachers generally reported low compliance to federal policies.  Finally, provision of asthma-related professional development, teachers’ own history of chronic illness, and information-seeking behaviors were significant predictors of whether students with asthma were served by an IEP or 504 plan.

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