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Schools Health Service

Volume 163: debated on Monday 4 December 1989

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on preventive health education measures in terms of the schools health visitor service.

Health education will be a cross-curricula theme in the national curriculum and the responsibility for its teaching in any school lies ultimately with the head teacher and governors. School nurses however can make a very useful contribution to the development of teaching programmes and also, in the course of their regular duties, they use their contacts with individual pupils to promote health education and encourage healthy life styles.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the future of the schools health service once local management of schools is in place as (a) medical support to staff and pupils and (b) health education support to staff.

Legislation has been amended so that district health authorities will have a responsibility to continue to provide a school health service for pupils al both schools maintained by local education authorities and at grant maintained schools. The range and organisation of services will still be determined by individual health authorities in consultation with local education authorities.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the role of the schools health visitor service in all age schools.

School health services make a very useful contribution to preventive medicine through child health surveillance and health promotion among school children. We have recently carried out a brief fact finding survey of a sample of school health services and will be considering if further guidance on the management of the service is appropriate.