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Person responsible: Miss S Pelter (SENCo)
Ridgeway High School is an all-ability mixed school for students aged 11 to 16. At Ridgeway High School we recognise our statutory duty to make arrangements to support students with medical conditions, including during activities that take place off-site as part of normal educational activities. We recognise the importance of consulting with health care professionals, students and parents to ensure that the needs of our students with medical conditions are met.
Students’ medical needs may be broadly summarised as being of two types:
- Short-term, affecting their participation in school activities or for which they are on a course of medication
- Long-term, potentially limiting their access to education and requiring extra care and support
This policy complies with the statutory requirement laid out in “Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions” (DfE, April 2014) issued under Section 100 of the Children and Families Act 2014 and has been written with reference to the following guidance and documents:
- Children and Families Act (2014)
- Equality Act 2010: advice for schools DfE (Feb 2013)
- SEND Code of Practice: 0 – 25 (June 2014)
- Data Protection Act (1998)
- Misuse of Drugs Act (1971)
- Admissions Policy
- Accessibility Plan
- Anti-bullying Policy
- Concerns and Complaints Policy
- Safeguarding Policy
- Teachers Standards 2012
- Educational Visits guidance
Aims and Objectives
At Ridgeway High School, we are committed to ensuring that all students with medical conditions are properly supported so that they have full access to our curriculum, including Physical Education and school trips, remain healthy, feel safe and achieve their academic potential.
- To ensure parents of students with medical conditions have confidence in the school to effectively manage their child’s condition by:
- establishing excellent lines of communication between the school and parents of students with medical conditions and health care professionals
- establishing clear procedures for dealing with emergency situations that may arise as a result of a medical condition
- providing a named person who is responsible for implementing the school’s policy and will address parental concerns regarding their child’s needs
- To provide a flexible but systematic approach to securing good attendance of pupils with long-term medical conditions
- To provide support for students who are unable to attend school for extended periods so that they do not fall behind
- To support the re-integration of students who have had long-term absences due to medical conditions so that they fully engage with learning and social aspects of school, ensuring their progress and emotional well-being
- To promote student understanding of the educational, social and emotional impacts of medical conditions through the Learning for Life programme and the implementation of the school’s Anti-bullying policy
- To work within the guidance provided in “Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions” (DfE, 2014)
- To raise awareness of the wide range of medical conditions via whole school training, pen portraits and individual health care plans
- To provide support and advice for all staff working with students with medical conditions, ensuring access to external training where required
Roles and Responsibilities
The Governing Body
The Governing Body are legally responsible and accountable for ensuring that the school fulfils its statutory duty laid out in the Children and Families Act 2014.
The Governing Body will:
- ensure that students with medical conditions have the same rights of admission as other students
- ensure that students with medical conditions can access and enjoy the same opportunities at school as any other child
- ensure that clear procedures are in place for dealing with medical conditions that affect the quality of a student’s life or may be life-threatening
- ensure that staff are properly trained to provide the support that students need
- ensure that procedures and systems are properly and effectively implemented
- ensure that students’ health is not put at unnecessary risk, in line with their safeguarding duties
- review this policy regularly and ensure that it is readily accessible to parents and staff
The Governing Body has identified a governor who will oversee the provision for students with medical conditions and keep the full governing body informed of how the school is meeting the statutory requirements. At Ridgeway High School, this role is undertaken by Mrs Jacqui Kearney (Vice Chair).
The Headteacher, Mr Tony Taylor, is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the school’s policy and procedures.
The Headteacher will:
- ensure the school’s policy is developed in consultation with stakeholders and is effectively implemented
- ensure that all staff are made aware of students’ medical conditions and their role in the implementation of the policy
- ensure that sufficient numbers of staff are trained to implement the policy and deliver the support outlined in Individual Health Care Plans, including in emergency situations
- ensure that school staff are appropriately ensured
The SENCo, Miss S Pelter, is the school’s named person for coordinating the provision for students with medical conditions.
The SENCo will:
- oversee the day-to-day implementation of the school’s policy and procedures regarding the support of students with medical conditions
- identify the training needs of those who support students with medical conditions and ensure appropriate training is undertaken before supporting a student
- liaise with primary schools and post-16 providers to ensure that all of the necessary information is shared at transition phases
- work with parents, students and healthcare providers to develop Individual Health Care Plans
- work with the Sensory Support Service to ensure a safe environment for pupils with sensory impairments
- monitor and evaluate the implementation of Individual Health Care Plans
- oversee the administering of prescribed medicines in school
- liaise with the designated teacher for Health and Safety to complete risk assessments for students with physical disabilities to ensure their safe movement around the school
The Designated Teacher for Health and Safety
The Designated Teacher for Health and Safety, Mr D Griffiths, is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day implementation of the school’s policies and procedures for Health and Safety.
The Designated Teacher for Health and Safety will:
- liaise with LA Health and Safety Officers, the Premises Manager and the SENCo to complete risk assessments for students with physical disabilities to ensure their safe movement around the school
- oversee the work of the Premises Manager to ensure that Health and Safety regulations are met
The Premises Manager
The Premises Manager, Mr D Kelly, is responsible for overseeing the general maintenance of the site, ensuring Health and Safety regulations are met and that Accessibility Plans are implemented.
The Premises Manager will:
- complete regular site audits to ensure that the site is safe and accessible
- organise training for staff who are responsible for the emergency evacuation of pupils with physical disabilities
“Any member of school staff can be asked to provide support to students with medical conditions, including the administering of medicines, but they cannot be required to do so.” (Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions, DfE April 2014)
School staff will:
- engage in suitable training and meet the necessary level of competency before taking on the responsibility for supporting a student with a medical condition
- ensure they have read all information provided in relation to individual students’ medical conditions
- know what to do and respond accordingly when a student with a medical condition needs help
The School Nurse
The school nurse is responsible for notifying the school when a student has been identified as having a medical condition which will require support in school.
The school nurse will:
- liaise with primary schools and their school nurses to ensure that information regarding medical conditions is shared at the transition phase
- support the school’s staff in implementing a student’s Individual Health Care Plan
- liaise with lead clinicians and specialist nursing teams to provide appropriate support for the student and training for staff
Other Healthcare Professionals, including GPs and Paediatricians
Other healthcare professionals should notify the school nurse when a student has been identified as having a medical condition that will require support at school.
The school works with closely with specialist nurses, paediatricians and other healthcare professionals to develop Individual Health Care Plans.
The Local Authority
The Local Authority is the commissioner of school nurses. The LA provides support, advice and guidance, including training for school staff, to ensure that the support specified in Individual Health Care Plans is delivered effectively.
The LA has a duty to make alternative provision for students with medical conditions who would not receive a suitable education in a mainstream school because of their health needs. This may be at Joseph Paxton Campus (Wirral Hospitals School) or through their outreach services.
Staff training and support
Any member of staff required to provide support to a student with a medical condition receives suitable training before support begins or within 2 weeks of support beginning. Where a member of staff has prior experience of supporting a student with a particular medical condition, this expertise will be used, if possible. Additional training needs are identified during the development or review of individual health care plans or at the transition phase from KS2 to KS3. Advice is sought from health care professionals to identify the type of training needed. Specialist nurses often deliver training to key staff.
Whole school awareness of the medical conditions of our students is addressed at least once per year through staff INSET. This takes place in September, before the return of the students, to ensure that all new staff are aware of the needs of key students and emergency procedures.
School staff will NOT:
- prevent students from accessing their medication
- assume every student with the same condition requires the same treatment
- ignore the views of the students or their parents/carers
- ignore medical advice
- prevent students with medical conditions accessing the full curriculum, unless specified in their Individual Health Care Plan
- penalise students for their attendance record where this is related to a medical condition
- prevent students from eating, drinking or taking toilet breaks where this is part of effective management of their condition
- require parents to administer medicine where this interrupts their working day
- require parents to accompany their child with a medical condition on a school trip as a condition of that child taking part
Procedure when notification is received that a student has a medical condition
When the school receives notification that a student has a medical condition, a meeting is arranged with the parents/carers to discuss the support required and plan for emergency intervention. Where further medical advice is needed, the SENCo liaises with specialist nurses and paediatricians to determine the level of support necessary.
Two members of staff are identified to provide support for the student and appropriate training is undertaken at the earliest opportunity. A pen portrait is written and circulated to all staff within two weeks.
During the transition phase from KS2 to KS3, the SENCo and Pastoral Support Leader for Year 7 and Transition meet with key staff from primary schools to share information about students with medical conditions. Pen portraits and individual health care plans are passed on. Staff are identified to provide support in advance of Induction Day and, in most cases, additional visits to the school are arranged to support transition. Pen Portraits are compiled for students with medical conditions and they are circulated to all staff. Parents/carers of students with medical conditions will be offered the opportunity to meet with the SENCo and Pastoral Support Leader for Year 7 and Transition within the first half term to review the support provided.
Individual Health Care Plans
The SENCo is responsible for developing individual health care plans for students with medical conditions that fluctuate, that are long-term and complex or for those where there is a high risk that emergency intervention will be needed.
Individual health care plans are written in conjunction with the student, parents/carers, health care professionals, e.g. specialist nurses or the school nurse and teaching assistants who are providing support for an individual. Plans are personal to each student.
An individual health care plan identifies:
- areas of difficulty experienced by the student
- barriers to learning
- triggers and preventative measures
- signs/symptoms of the student’s medical condition
- treatment required, including medication (dose, side effects, storage), specialist equipment, testing, access to food and drink, dietary requirements and movement around the school
- emergency procedures and parent contact numbers
- level of support – what needs to be done to support the student, by who and when
- advice for specific subject areas, especially practical subjects and PE
- additional SEN (Special Educational Needs) of the student
- access arrangements for public examinations
- arrangements for educational visits and risk assessment procedures
All individual health care plans are reviewed at least annually with the student, parents/carers and relevant health care professionals. A plan will be reviewed earlier if the needs of the student change before the end of the review period.
Students managing their own medical needs
Where it is agreed with parents/carers and health care professionals, students who are competent to manage their own health needs and medicines are encouraged to do so.
Students may carry their own medicines and health care devices (e.g. blood monitors, diabetic kits, Epipens, inhalers, etc.), if they are deemed competent, so that they can access them quickly in an emergency. Students may not, however, carry controlled drugs such as those prescribed for ADHD/ADD. Where a student is not considered competent or if the student is prescribed a controlled drug, designated staff who have received appropriate training administer medicines.
If a student refuses to take medication or carry out necessary medical procedures, the SENCo will contact parents/carers.
Managing medicines on school premises
Medicines will only be administered in school if it would be detrimental to a student’s health or attendance not to do so. It is preferred if medicines are prescribed in dose frequencies which enables them to be taken outside school hours, wherever possible.
No student will be given medication, either prescription or non-prescription without the consent of their parent/carer, except in exceptional circumstances**. Where students are required to take medication in school on a long-term basis, parents/carers are required to complete and sign a Parental Agreement, giving permission for medicines to be administered in school along with details of dose and frequency. The agreement states that parents/carers MUST inform the school immediately if medication is stopped or the dose is changed.
**Exceptional circumstances are those where the medication has been prescribed to the student without the knowledge of the parents. (All students will be encouraged to involve parents in decisions about medication but confidentiality is respected when agreed by a health care professional.)
It is our policy to manage prescribed medicines (e.g. antibiotics, inhalers, pain relief) where appropriate, following consultation and agreement with, and in receipt of written consent from, the parents/carers.
The school only accepts prescribed medicines that are in date and provided in the original container as dispensed by the pharmacist, clearly labelled with the student’s name, instructions for administration, dosage and storage. The only exception to this is insulin which is provided in an insulin pen or pump, but must still be in date.
It is our general policy not to take responsibility for the administration of non-prescribed medicines, e.g. cough mixtures, treatment for hay fever, creams or paracetamol provided by the parents/carers as this responsibility rests with the parents/carers.
However, if this medication is deemed necessary to prevent absence from school, parents/carers should clearly label the medication with their child’s name and form and send this into school to the Pastoral Support Leader with a covering letter stating the dose and frequency of the medication.
Controlled drugs are administered in school according to the instructions of a medical professional. They are checked by two members of staff and written records of medicines received and administered are completed daily. It is preferred that parents/carers bring controlled drugs into school but where this is not possible, students must bring medicines to school immediately upon arrival so that they can be stored securely.
The following safety measures are followed by all staff:
- No student is given medicines by staff members who are not authorised to do so.
- No student is given medicines containing aspirin or ibuprofen, unless prescribed by a doctor.
- When administering medication for pain relief, designated staff MUST check maximum dosage and when the previous dose was taken. Parents/carers are informed.
- All medicines administered by designated staff are logged in student files – the date, amount administered, time, member of staff, any side effects.
- Medicines that are out of date or no longer needed are returned to parents for safe disposal.
- A sharps box is available in Learning Support for the safe disposal of needles.
Storage of medicines in school
All medicines are stored safely and centrally and students are made aware of the location of their medicines so that they can access them immediately.
Students carry their own asthma inhalers, blood monitors and insulin and Epipens (if competent to administer) and know where their spare medicines and equipment are kept (in Learning Support). The key to the storage facility is a master and can be accessed by any member of staff. The Learning Support area is staffed throughout the day, including during breaks.
A refrigerator is available in Learning Support for the storage of insulin and any other medicines that must be kept refrigerated.
Storage of controlled drugs
These drugs, which include Ritalin and Concerta, are governed by the Misuse of Drugs Act (1971) and are kept in a locked steel cabinet, securely bolted to the floor. It is kept locked at all times except when being accessed for storage or administration of medicine. The cabinet conforms to the Misuse of Drugs Act (Regulations). The key to this cabinet is stored in a key safe and can only be accessed by the designated staff (Miss Pelter, Mrs Keaney, Ms Good).
Managing medicines during school visits
More information regarding procedures for administering medicines on school visits are outlined in the Educational Visits guidance.
Students carry their own medicines and equipment if they are deemed competent to do so, in agreement with parents/carers and health care professionals. Where prescription and non-prescription medicines are administered by a member of staff, this is a designated adult who has received suitable training. All medicines are logged, including time and dose. Controlled drugs are cross-checked by a second member of staff.
Spare medicines and equipment are carried by a designated member of staff during school visits. The designated member of staff remains with the student(s) he/she is supporting or remains in a central location where medicines and equipment can be quickly and easily accessed. Risk assessments are carried out at the planning stage, taking account of how students will access medication and equipment in an emergency situation. Individual health care plans are carried by the lead teacher and any member of staff supporting a student with a medical condition to ensure emergency procedures are followed.
Controlled drugs are carried in a lockable container and the key and spare are carried by 2 designated members of staff.
The school only accepts prescription medicines that are in date and provided in the original container as dispensed by the pharmacist, clearly labelled with the student’s name, instructions for administration, dosage and storage. The only exception to this is insulin which is provided in an insulin pen or pump, but must still be in date.
Non-prescription medicines are only administered with written consent from parents. This is included in the parental consent paperwork for school visits which must be completed by parents/carers of all students taking part. Medicines must be clearly labelled with the student’s name and form, along with the dose and frequency of medication.
Written records are kept of all medicines administered in school. Records include the date and time medicine was administered, dose given and the signature of the member of staff who administered the medicine. Parents/carers are always informed of any medicines that are administered that are additional to regular, prescribed medicines.
Written records of controlled drugs received from parents/carers and administered in school are produced and checked by two designated members of staff.
Emergency procedures for students with medical conditions that involve a high risk of emergency intervention being required are outlined in individual health care plans. This information is issued to all members of staff. Students with diabetes and severe allergies are issued with emergency “red cards” to show staff if they are feeling unwell and are unable to communicate this verbally.
Supply/temporary staff are issued with a laminated sheet outlining emergency procedures for key students, along with their photographs, which is handed back to reception at the end of the school day.
Whole school awareness of medical conditions that affect our students is addressed through academic review to ensure that all students know when they should get help.
When a medical condition causes a student to become ill and/or require emergency administration of medicines, an ambulance will be summoned at the earliest opportunity. Parents will be informed so that they can accompany their child to the hospital if at all possible. If this is not possible, a member of the school staff will accompany the student and meet the parents at the hospital.
Specialist transport is organised through the LA. Students in receipt of transport from the LA are accompanied by LA staff. Details of specialist transport can be found in the Wirral LA HOME TO SCHOOL TRANSPORT POLICY FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE AGE 5-16 PEOPLE AGE 5-16.
The school recognises that students with medical conditions may be vulnerable to bullying. At Ridgeway High School, our aim is to provide an environment where every student is safe and happy and where everyone understands that bullying is never acceptable.
All students are encouraged to tell a member of staff if they are feeling vulnerable and the Learning Support area provides a safe and supportive environment for students with medical conditions at break and lunchtime.
Our Anti-bullying Policy can be found on the school’s website (www.ridgeway.wirral.sch.uk).
Insurance arrangements – Liability and Indemnity
The school is insured through the LA for public liability and personal indemnity insurance.
We hope that a discussion with the SENCO and/or the Pastoral Support Leader will resolve most issues of concern relating to support for students with medical conditions. Where, however, such concerns are not resolved, the Headteacher and other senior staff are readily available to discuss any matter with parents or carers.
The school’s Concerns and Complaints Policy, which involves the school’s Governing Body and/or the Local Authority can be found on the school website (www.ridgeway.wirral.sch.uk) or may be obtained from the Headteacher’s PA, Mrs J Lloyd.