Too Safe School

    June 30th 2010, 9:15am - Posted by Administrator

  • Since the end of the world war II, the British society has strived to create a clean and healthy environment for its people. Many practices were introduced in schools to keep the children safe from contracting infections from the air and pupils when they are in school. Surprisingly, in a recent survey, teachers expressed their concerns over how over conscious health and safety culture in schools is hurting children's learning and development.

    The survey was conducted by Teacher TV brought a number of findings into lime light which previously had not been unknown to educators and parents. They said pupils were allowed to enjoy the sun and snow only after taking health and safety precautions. Around 45% of the participants out of 585 viewers of the Teacher TV considered health and safety precautions as a negative effect on teachers' and students' development and learning. However, 45% showed no apprehension and said the safety regulations were not too protective. Only 10% of the participating teachers thought that there was increased number of accidents in school.

    The participants revealed many examples of the extreme such practices have gone. When asked about general safety of their own and their pupil, more than half of those said they had to deal with a situation where they suspected a child was being abused. At least 2 out of 5 said they were afraid of being alone in a room with a pupil in case they were falsely accused of questionable demeanor. Teachers also disclosed about the 5 page briefing on wearing goggle and using glue stick to put up posters.

    Andrew Bethell, chief executive of Teachers TV, said: The more extreme examples [of health and safety] are thankfully not the norm but schools still need to take into consideration the workforce's concerns when trying to protect pupils.

    "It is worrying that almost a third of the education workforce feels under-prepared to deal with the very complicated issues surrounding abuse and potential abuse."

    The Health and Safety Executive has termed some of the examples mentioned in the survey “frankly ridiculous”. HSE chair was of opinion that children need to learn to handle risk by getting involved in more outdoor activities and going on visits. She said “"Stop worrying about the 'conkers stories' and help children learn how to handle risk by doing things and going on visits.

    "Concentrate on the real risks - not the trivia - by putting measures in place to manage them as far as is reasonable, but don't try to eliminate all risk and don't stop the activity."

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