Medication in School
With the cold and flu season seeming to have started early this year, we have had many parents asking us to administer pain relief for temperatures and sore throats. We would like to clarify the school’s position on medication in school. Please also note children are not normally allowed to stay inside during break or lunch unless there is a good medical reason for why they should not be out on the playground. Thank you for you cooperation with this.
Our Medical Needs Policy states that we will ‘support pupils at school with medical conditions so that they have full access to education, including school trips and physical education….with procedures to deal with emergency medical needs’. Where longer-term medical conditions arise, the school will work with other professionals to support pupils. This may mean creating an Individual Health Care Plan. Full details can be found in our Medical Needs Policy on our website.
Long-Term Medication - Medication, such as inhalers, Epi-pens etc. are kept in school to ensure that pupils with long-term medical conditions can manage their conditions, without missing school unnecessarily. The procedures for this are:-
- The medication is submitted to the office with a parental consent form, giving instructions on dosage and frequency.
- It is the responsibility of the parent to ensure that the medication is in date – we can refuse to administer the medication if it is not, as we would not be happy giving out of date medication.
- The medication must come in the original box with the pharmacist’s label, which will state the dosage to be administered. We will not give any other dosage unless there is a letter from the doctor. For example, we are often told they can have 10 puffs of an inhaler, when the box states 2 puffs.
- The school will keep a record of all medicines administered to individual children stating what, how and how much was administered, when and by whom. This also applies to parents/carers administering medication on the school premises.
Antibiotics – we will administer antibiotics if your child is well enough to be in school. The procedures above will apply. Where antibiotics are only required three times a day, we ask that where possible, this is taken at home (we have been advised that before school, after school and at bedtime is sufficient time). It is the responsibility of the parent to collect the medication at the end of the day. Pupils should be reminded of the time to come to the office at the appropriate time (we will remind younger pupils).
Pain Relief medication for infectious and non-infectious illnesses
There will be few circumstances where we will consider that non prescribed medication will be administered by staff. This would only be in exceptional or specific circumstances, such as pain relief for non-infectious illnesses or injuries, where the pupil is deemed well enough to be in school.
Infectious illnesses – we know that coughs and colds are not pleasant but we will not administer medicine for sore throats, blocked noses or temperatures. It is not appropriate for staff to judge whether pupils still require this sort of medication at the time they are asked to administer it. Parents are able to come into school to give this medication themselves, if they wish.
Although attendance is important, if a child has an infectious illness and cannot go the length of the school day without medication, it may be that they are not well enough to be in school.
Non-infectious illnesses/injuries – there are times where pupils will need pain relief to allow them to stay in school, such as broken bones or ear infections. These are assessed on an individual basis and, if it is agreed that we administer pain relief, it will follow the procedures above.
Finally, please do not give your child medication to keep in their bag. We are often finding that pupils have throat sweets, nasal sprays etc with them. If lost, these could be taken by other children. If you feel it is important that your child has such items, please see the office. This will be agreed on an individual basis.
Thank you for your co-operation. If you have queries, please contact the school office.