Should CPR Be Taught In Schools?

CPR in Schools

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is the emergency procedure that combines chest compressions and in some circumstances the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) to a person in cardiac arrest. 

At Penstripe, we believe that CPR and other life-saving skills should be taught in all secondary schools. Since 2019 in England, this has been part of the Health Education curriculum and is recommended for all students aged 12+. Schools in Wales are due to follow suit, with a new Bill that passed into law in 2021 – CPR will be taught in Welsh schools from 2022. 

For more information on the different laws in the UK, you can visit the Resuscitation Council UK website.

Why CPR Should Be Taught In Schools?

Schools are where children spend a lot of their childhood and they offer one of the best opportunities for larger-scale learning. Students from the ages of 11-16 (secondary schools), of all backgrounds and demographics all in one place to learn life-saving skills wouldn’t happen anywhere else.

When you see the statistics of cardiac arrest related issues in the UK, it soon becomes clear why teaching CPR in schools is of the utmost importance. 

  • NHS Ambulance Services attempt resuscitation on approximately 30,000 people each year
  • Most cardiac arrests (72%) occur in the home or a workplace (15%)
  • Half of all out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCA) are witnessed by a bystander
  • You have less than a one in 10 chance of survival if you suffer an OHCA

To help schools with the process of teaching CPR to pupils, every October, hundreds of thousands of people across the UK take part in the International Restart a Heart campaign. 

If you want to find out more about this campaign, you can see our blog on this year’s latest Restart a Heart day.

How Can I Teach CPR To Students?

Secondary school pupils should be taught in CPR training as per the Health Education curriculum and if you need help with any equipment or the sessions themselves, you may eligible for help from the British Heart Foundation.

As students may not fully understand the reasoning in learning how to perform CPR, teachers must try and make the sessions as engaging as possible. CPR should be taught in a practical manner – showing pupils how to administer CPR, inviting them to try the action on a medical dummy along with engaging posters/checklists. 

What Is Penstripe Doing To Help Schools?

As previously mentioned in this blog, we are passionate and driven in the reasons why we think CPR should be taught in schools. Over the years, we have teamed up with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service to help drive both our messages in local schools. 

An example of this is that for our 2021/22 planners, we donated space in over 350,000 student planners and 10,000 teacher planners to the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust to provide lifesaving CPR and defibrillator information to schools across the UK and beyond. These planners have been very positively received by students, teachers and parents alike and we plan to continue our strong relationship with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service and local schools.

If you’re interested in providing your students and teachers with life-saving knowledge, you can implement this into your school planner. Get in contact with us and one of our friendly team will be more than happy to help you.

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