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Starting Elementary School

Starting elementary school is such an exciting time for children and caregivers alike. But as a caregiver, it’s also understandable to feel nervous about this big step in your child’s life. 

Talk about CF with your loved one

As your child begins elementary school, he or she may start asking questions about cystic fibrosis (CF). They may notice that other children at school don’t do the same treatments. They may even be asked about CF by children or teachers. 

You can talk to your child about CF at any stage, when you feel comfortable. It’s good to teach them about it when they’re young to help them understand the importance of avoiding germs, eating right, and doing treatments. Talking about CF can also help prepare your child to take on more responsibility in the future. 

School Employee

Meet with school employees

As a caregiver, you want your child to be safe and cared for at school. So, if you feel comfortable in doing so, talk with the teacher and school nurse about CF and what it means for your child.


Talk about classroom illnesses. Let the teacher know that your child may get sick more easily if others are sick, so it’s important for you to know about any illnesses going around. You may also want to discuss the importance of frequent hand washing as a way to minimize the risk of infection for your child.


Set expectations. Let the teacher know if your child needs any accommodations, such as carrying tissues or a water bottle, leaving a few minutes early for lunch to pick up medicine from the nurse’s office, or having more frequent bathroom breaks.

Work with the school nurse. Develop a plan for how your child will take medications during the school day, if necessary, and where the medications will be kept.

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It may make your child more comfortable on the first day of school if he or she has met the teacher and school nurse beforehand.

Academic assistance

Get academic assistance

If your child needs extra assistance in school, there are a few different programs that could help. Here are some examples:

  • A school 504 plan provides academic accommodations for children with disabilities. It can help your child get access to their learning environment and help set them up for academic success
  • An individualized education plan (IEP) provides special education and related services that meet the unique needs of the child