Healthcare needs in schools guidance consultation: response analysis report

Analysis report summarising those responses received to our consultation on guidance on healthcare needs in schools.

Chapter 2 - Rights and responsibilities

Question 5: Are there any areas missing, requiring strengthening, or which are not required and could be removed?

Answer No. of respondents % of all respondents
Yes 53 65
No 13 16
Don’t Know 3 4
No Answer 12 15
Total 81 100

27. A majority of respondents felt that amendments could be made to this chapter. Of those respondents who didn’t think amendments were necessary, none provided any additional comments although there were 58 responses providing suggested amendments.

28. There were several references to specific paragraphs in Chapter 2. Paragraph 37 should include references to the role of pharmacists as the point of contact for medication queries and questions over use of the word “may” in the first sentence and paragraph 38 should specify the responsibilities and accountabilities of each agency. Another response also noted the absence of a reference school nurses. Paragraph 39, clarification about whose responsibility it is to monitor partnership working effectiveness. Paragraph 40, whether Education Authorities have a duty to liaise with healthcare teams Paragraph 42 and the reference to the role of named person in relation to the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 [14] . Paragraph 51, clarify who is main contact point and paragraph 64 should allow flexibility for cases where children require regular medication and clarify the role the head teacher has in duty of care for children when medicines are administered.

29. Responses in respect of specific health conditions, highlighted obesity and supporting diabetics. Healthcare in the pre-school setting was also highlighted, including the rights and responsibilities regarding children in early years settings and who pre-school providers engage with when they don’t have a school health team. In the case of school health teams, some responses felt the term was ambiguous and further definition is required whilst another response stated the legal duties of education authorities and schools should be referenced, including the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004 and the Equality Act 2010.

30. In the case of school staff, parents asked about guidance for what happens when best practice is not followed; what happens in larger schools if children are not getting the help they need; and what schools can do where a parent does not provide information, or provides incorrect information. When this happens, the responses ask if the guidance could state whether the school can approach health professionals for the correct information themselves.

31. The final main theme in respect of comments about this chapter refers to the roles and responsibilities of parents. In paragraph 57, one response noted it should be strengthened. Although registering a child with a GP is not compulsory, guidance exists to say that recommend adults do register their child. These included the disclosure of health conditions perceived as “stigmatised”, such as HIV, where only 11% of families had informed schools due to concerns about confidentiality. Other issues raised include making more explicit the responsibility of parents to ensure medication is within its expiry date and a clearer explanation of the importance of co-operation between parents, schools and the NHS including points of contact where parents have questions healthcare.


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