Legal Status:

This policy has regard for The Education (Independent School Standard) Regulations 2014, in force Jan ’15, part 3 together with KCSIE (Sept 2020), The Health and Safety Policy, First Aid and Medication Policy,The Risk Assessment Policy and the Safeguarding policy and all Critical Incident policies and procedures. and procedures.

Policy Applies to:-

  • The whole school, including EYFS, along with all activities provided by the school including those outside the normal school hours
  • All staff (teaching and non-teaching) and volunteers working within the school

Aims and objectives

Educational Visits and learning outside the classroom are an integral part of life at The Cedars School, furthering the education of the pupils. Educational visits and learning experiences outside the classroom are arranged for a child not only so their learning is benefited but also so that, knowledge, understanding and skills can be developed through experience that is not achievable in the classroom.

‘When you step outside the classroom you have the opportunity to transform learning and raise achievement. Learning outside the classroom allows participants to learn in context, to learn by practical engagement, and to learn by personal discovery.’

DCFS, Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, Out and About Guidance 2006

Educational visits and learning experiences outside of the classroom are defined as the use of alternative places other than the classroom for teaching and learning and include both day visits and residential activities.

Approval

All educational visits and learning experiences out of the classroom will be approved by the Head/Deputy Head. In accordance with national recommendations all Educational visits and learning outside of the classroom experiences will take into consideration the impact upon a child’s learning and will reflect our school’s aims and ethos.

General Information

We will ensure that each visit is planned thoroughly and with ample time to assess the risks.

Any outdoor or adventurous activities will be assessed to that they are within the ability of the children participating, taking account of the age and abilities of the children and the accompanying staff. Adjustments will be made to take account of children with SEND.

No amount of planning can guarantee that a visit will be totally incident free, but a thorough assessment of risk together with good planning and attention to health and safety measures can reduce the number of accidents and lessen the seriousness of those that do happen.

Risk assessments will be undertaken prior to all off site activity being undertaken.

Welfare

All accompanying adults have a duty of care. Members of staff should remember that they are in ‘loco parentis’ at all times and that common law duty states they should act as ‘reasonably prudent parents would’.

Children should never be alone or isolated from their group.

When deciding groups, children should be considered individually according to need and placed with suitable adult who can best enhance the learning experience.

Staffing Requirements

Group Leader

If more than one class is involved in a visit, a group leader will be identified. This is normally the staff member with the most appropriate experience, competence or most relevant qualification, that is visit specific. For any Educational day visit or learning outside the classroom experience to go ahead, the ratios of staff to children must be correct and in accordance with best practice.

The Group Leader will liaise with staff, complete the Risk assessment, arrange transport where necessary, liaise with staff to put children into appropriate groups and ensure that all staff have full knowledge of the off site visit.

The Head Teacher is responsible for informing the parents and accompanying staff of their responsibilities.

First Aid

On any visit, at least one member of staff will hold a valid first aid certificate. Where Early Years are part of the group, a paediatric trained first aider will be part of the group.

A First aid kit will be taken on all outings. If there are children who are on either long or short term medication this will be also be taken and administered in accordance with parent/ guardian’s written instructions.

Transport

The school will only use coaches that are fitted with seat belts. All seats should be forward facing and seat restraints should comply with legal requirements. The drivers should be suitably qualified and experienced.

The school will only use transport companies that have correct insurance and have transport with correctly fitting seat belts.

On rare occasions, children may travel in staff or parents’ cars. If cars are used then the correct insurance will be in place and booster seats for all children under the age of 12years and under the height of 135cm will be used.

Supervision

  • At least two members of staff should supervise the children getting on and off the coach – one on the coach and at least one member of staff at the coach entrance.
  • Check numbers on outward and return journeys and at any point where children or adults disembark and subsequently embark onto the coach
  • Where possible children will not sit on the first two seats facing the front window or next to the emergency exit.
  • Ensure children are settled and seat belts fastened before setting off.
  • Children must wear their seat belts throughout the journey unless told to remove them in an emergency.
  • At least one member of staff should be on each coach or minibus and have a mobile phone and emergency contact details.
  • Staff undertake training in case of an emergency evacuation of the coach/car.

Organisation of the children

The children will be prepared for the visit, so that they obtain maximum benefit from the educational visit or learning outside the classroom experience and also to understand the need to follow staff guidance to keep them safe.

Groups Lists are prepared for all staff and helpers attending with the visit.

Adult: Pupil Ratios

The school sets guidelines with regard to adult: pupil ratios that are required on any educational visit or learning outside of the classroom experience. The normal maximum ratio of adults to children should be 1:6 for Reception and 1:8 for other years but this should be confirmed as part of the risk assessment.

Information Available

The Head Teacher and Deputy hold the visit information for the duration of the visit. The information should contain details of:

  • itinerary
  • contact points
  • mobile phone number(s) of other members of staff
  • staff members on the outing and staff members at school
  • emergency contacts of children and staff on the outing
  • emergency procedures.

Reporting Accidents an Emergencies

The standard procedures for reporting accidents are followed at all times. Injuries to any person (adult or child) attending a learning experience outside the classroom must be recorded in accordance to HSE guidelines and school protocol.

The group leader will ensure the safety of the group as a priority and contact the appropriate emergency/rescue services should the need arise. Other members of the staff will ensure that the children are taken away from the area of danger.

Policy adopted by; Jane O’Halloran

Policy adopted September 2013

Reviewed: November ’17

Reviewed: November 2018 and Sept 2019

Review due Sept 2021