First Aid Requirements for Schools
This article provides a summary of information to help people working in schools and nurseries when making suitable first aid arrangements for your organisation.
There are two things to consider when deciding on the appropriate first aid provision for your school or nursery:
1. As a workplace, your school or nursery is a business and therefore must meet its legal requirements of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
2. As a school or nursery, you must comply with the EYFS and Ofsted guidelines
Schools and nurseries are therefore responsible for providing appropriate first aid provision to comply with the HSE as a business and employer as well as meeting the EYFS and Ofsted (or equivalent in private schools) requirements. This is to ensure that children and staff are safe and have the right level of provision in place to deal with a first aid incident.
What is appropriate provision?
As a workplace the HSE states that you have a duty of care as an employer and you are responsible for the safety and well-being of your staff. Generally, the ratio is 1 trained first aider to every 25 - 50 members of staff that must be available to deal with a first aid incident. You also need to ensure that there is cover in place should the first aider be absent from work.
In order for primary schools and nurseries to meet their requirements for the EYFS and Ofsted, it is also necessary that they have at least one member of staff trained in Paediatric First Aid on site at all times. Provision must also be put in place to cover holidays and absences as well as cover on school trips. This member of staff must also be able to attend to first aid incidents immediately.
Many schools that I work with now have tiered teams of first aiders. These are usually a team of fully trained first aiders in First Aid at Work and Paediatric First Aid and then have a wider team trained in the one day Emergency First Aid at Work and Emergency Paediatric First Aid to assist the main first aiders trained to ensure adequate provision is in place at all times.
For full details on your responsibilities as an employer take a look at the PDF file in the link below file. Details on ratios of number of first aiders to staff are on pages 6 and 7.
Cover required and additional things to consider
this may be based on the grounds and number of school buildings on the site. Is there more than one site and are both sites suitably equipped? Is there adequate provision on multiple floors in larger buildings?
here must be at least one trained first aider accompanying all school trips
it may be necessary for some staff to complete an outdoor first aid course who are then able to deal with potential injuries in the environments you are visiting and staying in
outdoor learning and forest school activities may also require an outdoor first aid course that can be contextualised to forest schools and the potential injuries from the equipment you will be using.
In summary, your primary school or nursery must have:
A trained first aider for every 50 members of staff at all times (Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work/Level 3 First Aid at Work)
A Level 3 trained first aider in Paediatric First Aid on site at all times and accompanying school trips
A designated medical room and appropriate first aid kits
Provision for recording of accidents
It is also strongly recommended that your school has a defibrillator onsite.
The first aid protocols for year 7 and above are the same as the adult protocols so the first aid provision will be calculated on numbers of pupils and staff within the school.
Many schools are now opting for courses that cover and meet both requirements in a tiered team system as above.
Level 3 First Aid at Work (Team 1) and
Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work (Team 2) depending on numbers of pupils and staff
If you require any assistance and support, please contact us directly.