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  1. ITV Report

Schoolchildren to learn first aid and lifesaving skills

From next year there will be a new subject on the school curriculum as lifesaving will be taught.

Schoolchildren across England will learn first aid skills which could help save a life, following a 10-year campaign by the British Red Cross.

Research found 23 per cent of children have been in a situation where someone required first aid, with 62 per cent saying they would not know what to do if a person required treatment.

Nine out of ten children concluded that knowing some degree of first aid would be practical, as part of the research released on World First Aid Day.

Fourteen-year-old Thomas is proof of the impact having the requisite training can have, as he jumped to assist a man having a cardiac arrest at a bus stop.

Thomas Nolan, right, in conversation with Marina Fogle. Credit: PA

Thomas had learned first aid a few months prior to the incident and his actions helped to save the man's life, as kept him alive until an ambulance arrived.

“I think everyone should have the chance to learn first aid," Thomas said. "It gives you the ability to help out properly. Think about it, it could be your parents or grandparents. If you were stuck in a situation and didn’t know how to help – how would you feel?”

At primary school, pupils will be taught basic first aid, such as how to call the emergency services or aiding someone with a head injury.

Gavin Williamson says the initiative is 'fantastic'. Credit: PA

Older students will have classes on lifesaving skills, which includes helping a person having a cardiac arrest.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “It’s fantastic that young people are so enthusiastic about learning first aid – a really important skill that means they will be ready to help in an emergency and could even save someone’s life one day.

“Our new health education curriculum, to be rolled out nationally in 2020, will mean every child will have the chance to learn lifesaving skills at school along with how to look after their own mental and physical health, ensuring they have the knowledge they need to grow up safe and happy.”