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Students may be eligible for free home hospital

Harlan County students facing an extended absence from school due to medical reasons are eligible for free home hospital instruction.

Any Harlan County student with an injury or illness preventing or expected to prevent school attendance for more than five days should inquire about this program, said Scott Pace, the home hospital program’s director.

“Home Hospital Instruction allows us to continue serving our students, even though they are unable to come to school,” said Pace. “It is a win for the student, the family, the school and our district.”

A medical form must be completed by a student’s medical provider, thereby allowing services by a teacher at the student’s home, he said.

A teacher will be assigned to the student to provide two visits per week, with one hour of instruction per visit. Students are not counted absent when assigned to the home hospital program.

Pace said an incentive to pursue this route of instruction is that assigned teachers will gather assignments and books from the students’ regular scheduled teachers and bring to the home.

“Then, when the student returns to school, he or she won’t feel so overwhelmed with makeup work and be up to date on assignments with their peers,” he said.

Examples of qualifying events include bone and muscle injuries, surgeries, illnesses that require extended periods for healing, and numerous others.

“We encourage any parent or guardian to contact us if their child is facing more than five days out of the regular classroom,” said Linda Hendrickson, attendance auditor. “We are here to help you in setting this up. Forms are available at the central office, at each school in the district and on the district website.”

Guidance counselors, attendance clerks and principals can assist you in securing the proper forms for the physician to complete. The forms are available on the Harlan County School District’s webpage and in local medical facilities.

“It is good to prepare by picking up the forms in advance of doctor visits if you know situations are coming up. We understand there are those that occur unexpectedly and will work with when requested.”

Pace emphasized again that there is no cost to the student or family for this service.

“We simply want you to know and be aware of the Home Hospital Instruction and encourage you to take advantage of it,” he said. “We ask for your assistance in sharing this information with family and friends. We want these students to receive the services for which they are eligible.”

Contact Linda Hendrickson at 606-573-4330, extension 2048, or the office personnel at your child’s school to obtain a form or learn more information.

You may visit www.harlan.kyschools.us and click on the home hospital link at the top of the page to view and download the home hospital application.