For teachers

A chronic, debilitating illness like Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) can severely impact a student’s school experience and ability to participate. It is important not to mistake symptoms of the illness for laziness or avoidance of social interaction. Students with ME/CFS want to attend school and want to continue their education. Teachers can help by understanding the illness and supporting the student with accommodations like extra time on exams and assignments, or combining in-classroom instruction with home-based tutoring. One key is to work as a team with school administrators and parents to develop an approach that works for the individual student. Please see the documents below for more information.

ME/CFS in Children: Fact Sheet for Education Professionals (CDC, 2017).

Letter to educators & agencies regarding younger people with ME/CFS, pages 27 to 28 of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis—Adult & Paediatric: International Consensus Primer for Medical Practitioners (Carruthers et al, 2012).

Recognizing and assisting students with CFS,New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) Review (Friedman and Underhill, 2007).

"Teach-Me: A Sourcebook for Teachers of Young People with ME/CFS or FM 2nd ed.," A helpful online booklet. (Carruthers and Bell, 2005, reprinted 2012).

Tips for Classroom Teachers of Young People with CFIDS” from the CFIDS Association of America (now called Solve ME/CFS Initiative) (Anderson, 2009).

Note: CFIDS (Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome) is an older name for ME/CFS.