Teachers ‘afraid to touch students’

School teachers are afraid to touch their students to administer first aid, a new report has revealed.

Teachers believe they will be sued if they attempt to touch their students to give first aid and fear abuse allegations, though no teacher has ever been taken to court in response to a reaction to a medical emergency, the TES Connect report said.

“There is perhaps an unfounded fear of litigation, which may be fuelled by inaccurate and sensationalist media stories,” Carolyn Crouchman, senior lecturer at Thames Valley University, said.

About 400,000 children experience injuries or accidents on school grounds annually and over the past 20 years the number of students diagnosed with asthma, epilepsy, severe allergies and heart conditions has risen.

It is not mandatory for all teachers and school staff to receive first aid training and many schools opt out in order to save costs.