Kisumu school expels student for having rare disease the school nurse “can’t handle”


A Kisumu girls high school has expelled a student after what she describes as a disease that cannot be handled by the school nurse.

Lydia Odero was expelled from Ng’iya Girls High in Siaya due to an illness which the school administration says can only be handled by receiving “motherly attention”.

The school recommended that the Form Two student transfers to a day school.

The 16 year old student suffers from Cord Ischemia, a rare condition that causes pain in body joints.

Lydia’s mother, Ms Jane Odero however has accused the school principal Florence Okut of treating her daughter unfairly saying the disease can be managed at school.

She said that her daughter told her that the school principal ordered her belongings to be packed without her knowledge.

“The decision to send me away came when I was recuperating after suffering from a malaria attack. I had even consulted the school nurse who assured me that I was getting better,” she said.

“I have a medical condition called Cord Ischemia. At times I have pain in the joints. During such times, I go to the sick bay and take a rest,” she added.


The principal however maintains that Lydia is suffering from sickle cell anemia and needs close attention and care.

“It will be good for the girl to be near the mother. Her illness is the type that needs very close care and attention,” she told the Daily Nation.

“When the attack comes, it lasts four to five days. Our worry is, who is going to be with her all these days and nights?” she asked.

She also adds that the school only has one nurse who attends to about a thousand students and cannot be able to fully attend to Lydia.

However, Dr Peter Owour, a consultant physician at Aga Khan Hospital in Kisumu, says Lydia suffers from Ischemia, which mainly affects the joints and causes occasional fever.


“She is a sickle-cell carrier that is compatible with normal health. She should therefore be allowed to continue with her education normally,” Dr Owour advised.