Send for nanny

Despite the results of a UK Government-funded report last year which concluded that ‘perceived health and safety regulations were felt to have systematically undermined communities and the quality of their children’s education’, creeping nannyism still seems to be rife, and still on the increase.

Schools are the subject of some very strange ‘guidelines’ when it comes to the subject of ‘health and safety’, or as it should more truthfully be known, ‘alleviating the risk of being sued’. Many of the strange regulations bear any reasonable relation to either health or safety.

In a survey of schools, 18% of those polled believed that the number of accidents had been reduced during the past five years, 11% reported that the number of accidents had risen, and the majority said the regulations made little or no difference whatsoever.

Teachers, in particular, believe that pupils should have the opportunity to experience controlled adventure and take risks as a vital part of a child’s education and personal development. It is not possible to protect a child twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

Health and safety concerns have become a great excuse for anyone trying to avoid a potential lawsuit in what is is rapidly becoming a claims culture. If the prime motive was actually the health or safety of the child or other person then it would be a little more acceptable. Not much, just a little. But at least it would be hones.

Children are already required to wear body armour to play the traditional game of ‘conkers’, school excursions are being cut back or even cancelled, sand pits are disappearing…the list is endless. A few of the latest, and bizarre, regulations in various schools include:

  • Pupils and teachers using  Blu-Tack must wear goggles.
  • No more three-legged races as they are considered too dangerous.
  • A ban on pupils being sent out of class to ‘cool off’ as this represents a fire risk. (However hot under the collar a child may get, the chances of spontaneous combustion must be in the region of ‘nil’!!!)
  • No PE lessons if the grass is wet.
  • No using the swimming pool if it is raining!
  • No using spray foam to mark out spaces in case a child slips and drowns (??) in it.

Surely it would be simpler, and cheaper, just to ask parents to wrap their children in wads of cotton wool before sending them to school. Or a cotton wool uniform, even better. The Government would, of course, have to introduce ‘thickness standards’, but then that shouldn’t present a problem!!

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