The Government has published its response to its consultation on paediatric first aid, which proposed to strengthen first aid requirements for group settings following the tragic 2012 death of Millie Thompson in a nursery class. You can read PACEY’s response to the consultation here.
It has confirmed that there will be a new requirement in the EYFS for newly qualified early years staff (with full and relevant level 2 or level 3 childcare qualification) to also hold a current Paediatric First Aid (PFA) or emergency PFA certificate in order to be included in the required staff: child ratios in an early years setting.
The changes still require parliamentary approval, but the Department for Education is planning for them to come into force on 1 September 2016. A revised EYFS will be published at the same time to reflect the changes.
Childcare providers will be allowed a three month ‘grace’ period to complete PFA training after starting work with a new employer.
The new requirements will not affect childminders, who are already required to have a full PFA certificate.
There will be exception on equal opportunities grounds for new staff with a disability. However, disabled staff members will, where possible, be required to attend PFA training, to learn what they can and receive a certificate of attendance.
Early years providers will be encouraged to display (or make available) staff PFA certificates or a list of staff with PFA training.
Liz Bayram, Chief Executive of PACEY, said:
"This is fantastic news for the sector and for all children in early years settings and their families. PACEY has been working alongside others in the sector to call for the requirements for Paediatric First Aid (PFA) training in group settings to match childminding settings, where all childminders and their assistants must hold a full PFA certificate. A recent member survey found that 94% of PACEY members were in favour of more first aid trained staff in group settings. The tragic Millie Thompson case in 2012 brought into sharp focus the fact that paediatric first aid training can mean the difference between the life and death of a child. We are delighted that government has listened and made this change that could ultimately save a child's life."