Thoughts about the Catholic Faith, family, education, disability and probably more.
Thursday, 4 March 2010
School based Confidential Health Service
Much of our time, this week, has been taken up by the need to consider our response to a letter from the school nurse at our childrens' (non-Catholic) school.
The letter explains that the Primary Care Trust wishes to set up a Confidential Drop in Health Service on the school premises, operating during a school lunch hour and staffed by the school nurse.
" These services are already running successfully in county secondary schools, and are recommended by key local and national documents that aim to improve young peoples' health.
The School Nurse will be able to offer advice and guidance, refer to other services where appropriate and offer some limited sexual health services including condoms, chlamydia screening, pregnancy testing and emergency contraception." (my emphasis)
There is no attempt to explain the meaning of the word 'confidential',in this context.We believe that it means pupils could be offered any or all of the above services without the knowlege or consent of their parents. We also think that 'refer to other services' must mean so called 'sexual health services', including abortion, since for every other health service provision for a minor, the written and signed consent of a parent is required.
Attached to this letter is a parental response form with two questions:
"Do you welcome the proposal for a health drop in at the college?" -which invites responses of yes, no, or don't know
Do you think young people would be happy to access this service? " -Responses as above.
There is a space for comments/suggestions.
And this, it would appear, constitutes a consultation with parents.
The response form is to be returned to the Chair of Governors by 11/3/10.
I think I can safely promise that we will beat that deadline, and that our reponse will be rather more substantial than circling one of the 'yes, no, or don't know's.
I'll post again on how things are developing, in the meantime your prayers for us, and all parents fighting similar battles would be gratefully appreciated.