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Eating disorders and mental health - will I lose my PGCE place?

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by SleepingGrumpy, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. Hi everyone. I'm not sure whether this should be in the health and wellbeing section but I suppose it is releveant here. I've been given a conditional place by my provider and have been asked to fill in medical forms and it is a condition that I pass the medical check as to whether or not I get an unconditional place. Anyways, long story short, I've suffered with an eating disorder on and off for the past 3 years but only just told my doctor this summer. I've seen a therapist who said she was quite convinced that food wasn't the issue and that it wasn't a danger. Since then I haven't seen anyone. I'm a lot better than I was but now and again I do lapse back into some of those behaviours, during times of stress for example.

    There's a question on the form that asks whether I've ever been diagnosed with an eating disorder. I've spoken to my doctor and she said that I should 'play it down' so to speak but not lie and just put 'problem with eating, only needed seeing once.' But I'm scared of what my provider will think and whether I will pass the test if I put that in. I know I can't lie, but at the same time, I am not completely immersed in an eating disorder. I do worry though that it could be an issue during my PGCE as I know it's very stressful. Basically I'm asking what people think I should do? And do providers tend to reject people based on something like that? I'm really nervous about this.
  2. Bless you. In all honesty I think it may depend on your provider and how thoroughly they might want to look into it. But you are right, you shouldn't keep it from them. I'm sure you're not the only student teacher who has had some health issues in the past and probably lots of teachers and student teachers have them whilst they're working/training. If they do want to look into it I'm sure your doctor can explain to them that you aren't an extreme case. I can't imagine they would reject you, that is completely going against equal rights and oppertunities. Not to mention completely inconsiderate. You could probably challenge them for that. Just be honest. Hope everything goes ok for you.
    Congratulations on getting your place btw [​IMG]
  3. My training provider has also said I've got to have one of those... I wondered what it was, so thank you!
    Like CrunchyMcFlurry says, all you can do is be honest. I am sure it won't go against you as long as it's under control and not taking over your life. So to speak, that it shouldnt affect your ability to teach.
  4. You must disclose all medical information. This is not seen by your training provider lecturers/academic staff or admin staff. The information goes in confidence to the Occupational Health department of your provider - in the first instance usually a nurse. If there are any concerns about your health, it is possible (albeit rare) that you will be asked to come in for a chat with a nurse or doctor retained by your provider. All of this is for your protection/safety - not to be used as a tool for getting rid of you. Occupational Health may (with your permission) give advice to the academic staff if necessary.
    As an example, I have a student teacher who is diabetic. That does not stop her being an excellent teacher, but it is important that her placement school should know of her condition so that if she had problems at school (suppose she passed out) they might have some idea of the likely cause and how to support her.
  5. Thank you for all the replies. I did put it down in my form. Occupational health rang me about 2 weeks ago asking me questions. The person I spoke to wasn't very reassuring about me still getting a place. In fact they have told me they are going to write to my doctor despite having asked me everything and given them honest answers. I feel as though I am being checked up on and undermined I guess. I'm quite worried in all honesty that I won't get in.

  6. Hi I know this is a really old message but I was wondering what happened with this, did you get onto the course okay?

  7. I did get onto the course yes but it took a long time to get my medical form cleared. My doctor had to make it explicit that she was not concerned about a relapse and that I had recovered.
  8. fraudeutsch

    fraudeutsch New commenter

    SleepingGrumpy - what a relief - I am going through something similar now - put on my form about depression that was ten years ago. It was quite bad at the time to be honest, but no symptoms for 10 years and I've taken a degree since then and held down full time jobs for six years! I am waiting for doctor to send the letter over to the uni. So reassuring to know that even though it was a bit of a nuisance - and a faff - you got on the course ok. Good luck for September!

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