The Government believes in the value of teaching young people the basic knowledge they need to carry out first aid and emergency response procedures.
Schools are free to teach first aid, and many schools already choose to teach lifesaving as part of personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE), building on the relevant statutory content in the National Curriculum, such as the science programmes of study at Key Stages 3 and 4.
Schools are free to draw on materials from expert organisations. For example, the non-statutory programme of study produced by the PSHE Association, encourages schools to teach young people how to recognise and follow health and safety procedures, ways of reducing risk and minimising harm in risky situations, and how to use emergency and basic first aid.
The Children and Social Work Act provides powers for the Secretary of State to make PSHE, or elements therein, mandatory in all schools, subject to careful consideration.
We will set out shortly more details about the engagement process and the work to consider age appropriate subject content. This will result in draft regulations and guidance on which we will consult. Following consultation, regulations will be laid in the House allowing for a full and considered debate.