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Hospital School

WHAT IS THE HOSPITAL SCHOOL?
The Hospital School is one of the schools in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools district and is located within the UNC Hospitals complex. Founded in 1965, the school has grown from a staff of 2 serving approximately 50 patients to a staff of 16 serving over 2000 annually. Funding for staff, facilities, and materials is provided by the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, UNC Hospitals, and the Department of Public Instruction.  Private support for the school is also provided by the Addie Armfield Education Endowment Fund, established with The Medical Foundation of N.C., Inc.

WHY IS IT NEEDED?

The school provides year-round, educational services to school-age children and adolescents while they are patients so they will be able to continue their studies with as little interruption as possible. In a medical setting, school activities can also provide a degree of normalcy and offer distraction from pain or anxiety.

WHAT SERVICES ARE PROVIDED?
Services that can be provided include:

  • Direct instruction for K-12 students, young adults through 21 who have not yet graduated from high school, and pre-school children with disabilities.
  • Instruction is based on assignments from the student's local school, the North Carolina Standard Course of Study, and the student's individual ability.
  • Liaison with the local school to:
    • Ensure that the hospitalized student is not counted absent during enrollment at the Hospital School;
    • Obtain information about assignments, when appropriate;
    • Obtain school history;
    • Make suggestions and recommendations for services and/or transition planning upon the student's return to the community.
  • Academic testing.
  • Preschool screening for 3 and 4 year olds.

Although hospital teachers make referrals and provide assessment information, the identification process for Exceptional Children's services is usually completed by the student's local school.

DO STUDENTS GET CREDIT?

Since the Hospital School is part of the public school system, credit must be given by the local school for assignments completed at the Hospital School and for the number of school days in attendance.

IS THERE A CHARGE FOR ATTENDANCE?
There is no charge for the Hospital School program. It is funded by the taxpayers of North Carolina, just like any other public school.

WHERE IS THE SCHOOL LOCATED?
There are two separate locations for the school within the UNC Hospitals complex. The pediatric component of the school is located on the seventh floor of the Children's Hospital, and the psychiatric component is located on the second floor of the Neurosciences Hospital. At both locations, there are classrooms, offices, and a media center or computer lab. Although there are classrooms and physical space designated as "school" where students "go to school," school often goes to them. When needed, teachers work with students at bedside or on the patients' units where they are being treated.

HOW IS THE SCHOOL STAFFED?

The school staff consists of a principal, a resource coordinator, a diagnostician, a media specialist, a school secretary, and 12 classroom teachers. All faculty members are state certified and most hold advanced degrees. Employment is through the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools.

HOW CAN PARENTS HELP?

Parental input is always encouraged. By giving permission to contact the student's school, parents allow teachers to begin the vital process of liaison and advocacy with the local school. In addition, parents can bring books and assignments for planned hospital admissions. For special education students, providing copies of the Individualized Education Plan (I.E.P.) and any testing is helpful.

HOW CAN THE LOCAL SCHOOL HELP?
Collaboration between the student's local school and the Hospital School is essential to plan an appropriate educational program during hospitalization and to facilitate the student's transition back to the community.

The local school can help by:

  • Providing information on the student's cognitive and academic levels of functioning, peer relationships, attendance and observations;
  • Working with hospital teachers as they plan instruction;
  • When appropriate, keeping in touch with the student through cards, phone calls, or videotapes.


WHERE CAN I GET MORE INFORMATION?
Click here to visit our Web page at:
http://unchs.chccs.k12.nc.us

Contact the staff of the Hospital School at (919) 966-1288 or through e-mail.

EMPLOYMENT AND VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
There are 16 faculty positions and one secretarial position. All teachers must hold certification in some area of Exceptional Education. Although not required, a master's degree is preferred.  No vacancies are anticipated for the upcoming school year.   However, if you would like to place an application on file with the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools, please click here: http://www.chccs.k12.nc.us/

If you are interested in volunteer opportunities with the Hospital School, please contact UNC Hospitals’ Volunteer Office at (919) 966-4793.

E-mail addresses are assigned within UNC Hospitals in the following format:
first letter of first name followed by last name and the following tag: @unch.unc.edu
John Doe would look like this: Jdoe@unch.unc.edu (Hyphenation can be included in name)

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