Telling a class about a recent bereavement

I am a teacher in a primary school. A child in my class' parent is in the last few days of life. Do you have any advice about how I can tell my class and advice about how they can support each other? 

  • Hello


    Thank you for getting in touch with us. I’m sorry to hear about this. How are the child and their family coping? Have school been able to put any support in place for them? I can imagine this might be upsetting for you seeing one of your pupils go through this. How are you coping?

    In addition to the online community, we also have a freephone support line 0808 808 00 00, and an online webchat service which are both open 8am – 8pm seven days a week. You’d be welcome to stay in touch with us in any of the above ways.

    I guess it’s understandably not easy in knowing how best to approach these conversations with your class. In general, we encourage people to be open and honest about what has been happening, but we understand this isn’t straightforward when talking with young children. We have a couple of booklets which might help. One of them is called, ‘Talking to children and teenagers when an adult has cancer.’ You can access it here. In addition to providing you with guidance, the booklet also lists other resources and support for children who have a parent with cancer. The other booklet is called, ‘Preparing a child for loss’ and you can access that here. Again, this booklet lists other resources and support which may also be useful.

    Please do stay in touch with us Livelaughlove.

    David, Information and Support Adviser

    Remember you can also speak with the Macmillan Support Line team of experts. Phone free on 0808 808 0000 (7 days a week, 8am-8pm) or by email.