After 10 years of campaigning by the British Red Cross, school children across England will learn lifesaving skills as part of the school curriculum from next year.
Pupils in state-funded schools will learn first aid from September 2020. Primary children will be taught basic first aid such as how to call the emergency services or how to help someone with a head injury while secondary pupils will learn lifesaving skills such as helping someone who is having a cardiac arrest.
Research by the British Red Cross found that nine out of 10 children agreed knowing first aid skills would make them feel more confident to help in a first aid emergency and that it was one of the most important lessons they could learn at school.
Another study revealed up to 59 per cent of deaths from injuries could be prevented if first aid had been given before medical services arrived.
One of those who has been championing the campaign is Marina Fogle, co-founder of the Bump Class and host of The ParentHood podcast. She is married to British Red Cross ambassador and adventurer Ben Fogle.
She said: “I’m delighted that first aid lessons are now part of the national curriculum. So many women I know, especially those weaning their babies, are terrified of the possibility of their child choking.
“You never know how you might act in an emergency, but children learning first aid could make all the difference if one of their younger siblings were choking at home.
“Now we have to make sure school children in the rest of the country – outside England – get the same chance to learn how to save a life.”
The British Red Cross is also relaunching its first aid mobile app so everyone can have lifesaving skills at their fingertips.
Teachers wishing to sign up to receive free British Red Cross resources that will support them to teach first aid can do so at www.redcross.org.uk/teach-first-aid