Sheffield students trial school resources to raise awareness of breast cancer among young people
A group of Sheffield students have been trialling school resources aimed at raising awareness of breast cancer.
The group of around 80 students from Hinde House Secondary School, in Shiregreen, have been testing out the resources from cancer charity CoppaFeel as part of a project to help them look after and manage their health.
Kris Hallenga, founder of CoppaFeel has been campaigning for cancer education to be part of the national curriculum since 2013 when the charity projected UK cancer statistics onto the Houses of Parliament.
Now, in a monumental move the Department for Education have announced that from September 2020, it will be compulsory to teach health education as a subject in all government-funded schools in England.
This means that as well as teaching the benefits of healthy eating and keeping fit, the new compulsory health education will include information on the prevention of health problems such as self examination to identify the signs of cancer.
In a bid to prepare both students and teachers for the change, CoppaFeel have been arming schools with resources to trial so they can give their feedback before the launch.
The Year 10 students from Hinde House Secondary were given detailed lessons on how to spot the symptoms using resources such as quizzes, crosswords and posters, before they were able to test and share their new found knowledge with others.
Head of PE Hannah Smith, said: “When the children started the sessions lots of them had no idea of the signs or the symptoms of cancer. It’s amazing really because at the end they were really confident in spotting the signs.
“They made a card which they delivered to staff, detailing the symptoms and what to look out for. They all also pledged to tell a family member – male or female as they’re both at risk – about the symptoms and how they should check themselves regularly.”
It is hoped creative approach to cancer education will influence the young people to be self aware so they can spot the signs of cancer early and gain access to treatment.