MORE than three-quarters of parents in Wales think first aid and lifesaving skills should be a compulsory element of the new school curriculum, according to a new survey.

Those taking part rated these skills as more important than information about puberty, diet and nutrition, exercise and drug and alcohol awareness.

When parents were asked about their children’s knowledge of first aid and life-saving skills (such as knowing how to do CPR, or what to do if someone is bleeding heavily), 59 per cent of the children were described by their parents as having “very poor” or “fairly poor” knowledge of first aid.

The poll, commissioned by the British Red Cross and British Heart Foundation Cymru, supports the joint call with St John Cymru for the topics to be a compulsory part of the school curriculum from 2022 for all primary and secondary school pupils.

Under current Welsh Government proposals, first aid and life-saving skills are only mentioned as a suggested topic. We are calling on the Welsh Government to make these skills compulsory, and ensure the new curriculum guarantees primary and secondary pupils learn first aid and life-saving skills throughout their school life – one hour a year, every year, as is already the case in schools in England, following the charities’ successful campaign with the UK Government.

Parents in Wales still have the chance to have their say in the consultation, which ends on Friday, July 19.

Go to and help put first aid teaching on the new curriculum to create a new generation of life-savers.


Education Manager for the British Red Cross in Wales