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Premature pupils 'struggle'

12th March 2009

Premature babies are struggling when they reach mainstream schools, according to a new study.

Premature Baby

The EPICure study, which focused on 219 children aged 11, indicated that more than half of children born before 26 weeks need extra help at school, particularly with maths and reading.

The team led by University College London found that 13% of the children involved - all born prematurely in 1995 - needed full-time specialist education.

For the study, published in the Archives of Diseases in Childhood, Fetal and Neonatal journal, the research team analysed the IQ and academic ability of these children at age 11 and compared it with that of 153 classmates born after a normal length pregnancy.

One in three of the children born extremely prematurely found reading difficult, while 44% had difficulty with maths.

The children born prematurely also had a lower IQ.

Lead researcher Professor Neil Marlow said: "Extremely preterm birth places children at high risk for cognitive and learning deficits affecting schooling in middle childhood."

He also suggested parents of extremely premature children born in the summer may want to hold back their start dates a year to give them a chance to catch up.

Premature baby charity Bliss said it was important that children born extremely prematurely were given good support but said since the study began there had been improvements in neonatal care, better survival rates and better outcomes for premature babies.

The Department for Children, Schools and Families said more money was being provided direct to schools to tackle the needs of such children.

 

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Anonymous

Saturday 7th November 2009 @ 10:02

i am a 29 week baby....born in 1970 ....i am longsighted eyesight with stigmatism and my skull is not a round shape...i have a flat head at the top...i have a nerve hearing loss in both ears and i wear a hearing aid in my left ear....i sat at the front of the classroom in lessons..employment has been hard i didnt tell some companies that i had a hearing loss until after i was given a job...now i am a civil servant and i registered with disability.act..i have been hammered using the phones past 3 years ..they did give me less targets than other people..but they did not understand how tired i get in my situation.....now i dont use the phones every second..and my energy level is higner......i have suffered a miscarraige..and i have just recently lost my daugher born at 27 weeks..no one would believe me when i said i would have a premature baby..premature baby girls struggle to hold pregnancies...no medical staff would discuss this with me....i left school with one o level in english...but went onto night school has the last two years at school was very hard and i ended up with one friend i was angry about wearing a hearing aid and some girls did not want to be associated with me...looking back i was depressed my parents had no money and my mother had strong relegious views which effected my personality. At nightschool i got gcse maths and english..a level art..a level business and finance..computer skills.i tried sign language to change my job but found when i wasnt working with deaf people i lost the skills.....i met my 1st boyfriend at 17 and i have found that past boyfriends do not understand hearling losses...i am married now to a man who is still learning...i dont sing songs....i cant pick up all the wordss so therefore i dont remember.i have tinnitus..i struggle to hear peep talking away from me at work.....which at times they laugh....i get very annoyed...i struggled with the training but in the end managed to pass......i do not know what to do with my future i do not want to carry on in my career field...more awareness is need for premature babies when they turn to adults.......i am not good at maths i have to work at it...my english is brillant....i do not use a modem on the phone as the volume button is used. I find wearing a hearing aid very uncomfortable which i make alot visits to the local hospital..sadly my ears are too small to accomodate a comfortable digital hearing aid....at exams time at school my mother had to fight with the headmaster to give me extra time....again i found it humilating and embarrassing it certainly isolated me from the other pupils....and i did not get any extra help from school teachers...french was hard. physics was hard...chemistry hard but the other subjects were good. I did not attend further education asi was lost at the time..it has been very hard turing into a adult..i will never be rich or work places will n ever understand.....i am a year from 40 and it doesnt seem to be getting easier.....


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