Grief Encounter lends their support to a campaign spearheaded by the National Association of Funeral Directors to add bereavement to the national curriculum. The petition calls for schools to be required to provide age-appropriate education to help children understand death as a part of life, as part of compulsory Relationships education.
New statistics released last Children’s Grief Awareness Week, an initiative founded by Grief Encounter to raise awareness of childhood bereavement, reveal that 127 children experience the death of a parent or sibling every day in the UK.
In recent findings, primary school pupils acknowledge that loss and bereavement is hard to talk about (59.5%) and 58.1% of pupils questioned, voted to have lessons about how to cope with loss and bereavement on the curriculum*. Interestingly, secondary school students disagreed with their younger counterparts, with only 38.4% voting ‘yes’. But college students agreed with their primary school colleagues, with 65.2% of students voting ‘yes’ for inclusion of loss and bereavement as a learning topic.
Integrating death and bereavement education into the curriculum can help children to develop a realistic and healthy attitude towards death and loss, be more sensitive to the grief of others and develop more effective coping strategies of their own.
You can sign the petition here. Are you a teacher or a student? What do you think about grief education? Should all children learn about coping with bereavement at school? What support do you think is needed?
* Source; Childhood Bereavement Network