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First aid policy in primary schools

(7 Posts)
northernlass2 Tue 22-May-18 21:47:15

Is there a standard policy for first aid in primary schools?
I would like to know if it’s acceptable for a year 4 child to be sent to get a plaster for a bleeding finger without a member of staff present. She was allowed unsupervised access to the first aid kit and ended up drinking some saline solution. Her teacher then told her off and sent a stern email to her parents telling them her behaviour was unacceptable to take a bottle out of the first aid kit.
Is it me or does that strike you as rather odd? I would have thought they had a duty of care to ensure the safety of all children and that bottles of saline solution should not be freely available for a child to pick up and drink...... this particular child has known behaviour issues and is known to chew her fingers until they bleed as a way of dealing with stressful situations. I would therefore expect extra care to be taken if this child needed any kind of first aid.
Can anyone advise if there are specified rules or is each school entitled to make its own judgments on this sort of thing?
Thank you.

OP’s posts: |
ShawshanksRedemption Tue 22-May-18 22:05:18

Where I work there is a (small) First Aid kit in every classroom, which is also taken out with the class for PE. Therefore no need for child to be unsupervised! If child needs more than can be done in class (wound bathing for example or ice compress for bruising) then they are escorted to the medical room.

I would ask the school for their policy and check it there.
Gov guidance here: assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/306370/guidance_on_first_aid_for_schools.pdf

ShawshanksRedemption Tue 22-May-18 22:09:42

I would just add however, unless the child has SEN where they can't control their impulses, the child is responsible for their behaviour. Therefore drinking saline is unacceptable, and the teacher is not being unreasonable in expecting the child to just get a plaster and not drink saline.

The reason kids are escorted to the medical room in our school is so that the more serious injuries can be recorded by an adult in the First Aid book and the designated First Aider can be consulted if needed.

northernlass2 Tue 22-May-18 23:00:02

Thank you. Yes she does have known special needs and regularly self harms so that is why I found it very odd to have let her go unattended.

OP’s posts: |
littleducks Tue 22-May-18 23:02:01

Thank goodness it was only saline

gigglingHyena Thu 24-May-18 15:07:20

Sound odd to me, I would not expect a child of primary age to have access to the school first aid kit.

I wonder if the idea was not to give any additional attention to the self harm. My son has issues picking his skin and has his own supply of bandages in a box in class where he can get them if he needs too without anyone else needing to be involved. However, that's something that has been discussed at length and agreed between us and school.

I would not be at all happy for him to be sent off somewhere to get items out of a first aid kit himself. Possibly for a small cut being sent alone to the office/medical room for someone to check them over and apply a plaster.

Foe my particular child I would even then expect him to be accompanied, he's not likely to know what to do next if there isn't someone in the office, I could certainly see him heading in and finding the kit himself.

I would definitely contact the head and ask how this happened.

soapboxqueen Thu 24-May-18 17:43:02

I don't think there is anything in particular about first aid kits. More about access to harmful substances and lack of supervision in general.

Would I have sent a child alone to access the first aid kit, no. Would I send a child alone to go to the member of staff with first aid training, yes.

The thing is, most children, particularly by year 4,wouldn't drink random bottles of liquid they found. In the same way that they wouldn't drink paint that was in the classroom. I think maybe you need to focus on what needs to be in place for this child in particular rather than children in general.

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