The number of nurses in schools has fallen in recent years, prompting fears that pupils’ lives are being put “at risk”.
Teaching assistants are being asked to carry out medical interventions, such as injections, without adequate training or support, the GMB union, which represents school staff, has said.
Data, obtained by the GMB union through a Freedom of Information request, shows the number of school nurses has fallen by 11 per cent in four years – from 472 in 2015 to 420 in 2018.
Karen Leonard, National Schools Officer at the GMB union, said: “The uncomfortable truth is that in too many schools children are not getting the medical support they need.”
Ms Leonard added: “School staff should not administer medicine unless they feel fully confident in their training and lines of accountability, but often they are placed in uncomfortable situations."
“This is a highly stressful state of affairs for children, parents, and staff, who fear they will be blamed if something goes wrong. It is not alarmist to say that lives are at risk.”
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Source: The Independent, 23 February 2020