Student Injuries

Preventing Student Injuries

Safety tips are different for elementary and secondary-age students because injuries occur in different settings.

For elementary school students

  • Establish playground safety rules (such as no pushing, crowding, or shoving) with consequences for breaking rules.
  • Always have trained adult supervisors present who:
    • Spread out and avoid congregating in groups.
    • Walk around the entire perimeter of the playground.
    • Find areas that allow sight from one end of the playground to the other.
  • Develop a playground inspection and equipment maintenance checklist.
  • Schedule regular inspections and promptly repair broken playground equipment.
  • Establish a school climate that demonstrates respect, support, and caring and does not tolerate harassment or bullying.
  • Provide first aid training for school staff as outlined by state guidelines.

"Our school’s recess rules are exactly what they should be. The rules are in place to keep us out of harm’s way."

Darrell, a 5th grade student

For secondary school students

  • Provide regular injury prevention training for staff and students.
  • P.E. teachers and coaches should be certified in CPR and first aid.
  • Develop safety rules for gyms and train students to use equipment properly.
  • Equipment should be in good condition and appropriate for the child’s age and size.
  • Every athlete should receive a pre-season physical exam by a qualified health care provider.
  • Ensure that sports programs include conditioning, personal protective gear, and adult supervision.
  • Have a trainer, physician, or EMT present at all athletic practices and competitions.
  • Every athletic program should have an emergency plan to address medical care of injured athletics.
  • Athletes should never play a sport when injured unless cleared by a health care provider.
  • Conduct regular safety and hazard assessments in gyms and on sports fields.

If your child is being bullied, check out the Children's Safety Network Bullying Prevention 2015 Resource Guide for help.