SMT Updates

Code of Practice for Jewellery in Physical Education

Code of Practice for Jewellery in Physical Education


Aberdeen City Council (ACC) recognises its duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of employees and those affected by its activities. The wearing of personal effects, such as jewellery and watches, can present risks of injury to the person and / or others involved in an activity. Exposure to the risk of injury from such items can principally occur in Physical Education.

Code of Practice Aim

To ensure that employees and others, such as school pupils, taking part in Physical Education lessons are aware

• of the hazards of wearing jewellery & watches

• that control measures are in place to avoid the risk of injury

• that to enable individuals to understand that, as well as the right to protection, they also have to exercise responsibility

Code of Practice Scope

This policy applies to all Council schools where persons who are wearing jewellery and watches can potentially expose themselves and others to the risk of injury while taking part in Physical Education.


The following advice has been checked by our legal team. It applies to ALL body jewellery and watches and is to be followed by all schools.

1. There should be risk assessments in place for all PE activities e.g. rugby, football, hockey, etc. The risk assessments should be made specific to each activity. Wearing of jewellery should be identified as a hazard in each risk assessment with a subsequent control measure (exemption from activity, removal/cover-up of jewellery/watch, adjustment to activity, etc.). The risk assessments should be written.

2. All schools should follow the advice of the Association for PE as follows: The basic rule is that all jewellery should be removed as this then removes that particular hazard.

Where an item of jewellery cannot be removed then it is the adult teaching the group’s responsibility to try to establish a safe situation to enable participation by considering how, or if, the context can be made safe by amending the task, conditioning the activity or creating some other management strategy to make participation safe. Where safe participation cannot be assured then the pupil cannot take part in that element of the lesson. It is good practice to regularly ask if anyone is wearing body jewellery. If they disclose this then the process of removal or considering whether safe participation can be made possible should apply. If there is no disclosure but some body piercing is seen during the session then from that point the process above needs to be applied – remove, make safe or take no further participation in aspects of the session that would put the wearer or others at risk. Pupils should remove their own jewellery. This should be made clear to parents and carers. If the child is unable to do this they should not wear any. School policy should explain this to parents from the outset.

3. If a pupil refuses to remove jewellery based on religious reasons, they should be requested to tape it up. Each situation should be considered on a case by case basis. If in this situation a pupil refuses to tape up the jewellery, the school should provide an alternative activity to allow the pupil to continue to participate in the lesson.

4. The basics of the above to be displayed in PE changing rooms, gyms etc.

5. PE teachers should remind classes of this at the start of every lesson.

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