EDUCATIONAL VISITSBest Practice2009
Glossary of TermsAccompanying StaffMembers of staff, other than the GroupLeader, who participate in the visit in asupervisory capacityEducational Visits Co-ordinatorThe person within the school or youthcentre/project who has responsibilityto ensure that the visit meets allrequirements.Employing AuthorityThis refers to the employers of thestaff within schools and youth centres/projects for example:-• Controlled schools and youth clubs-The Education and Library Boards;• Maintained schools -The Council for Catholic MaintainedSchools;• Voluntary schools -The Board of Governors;• Voluntary youth clubs/groups -The management committeeExternal ProviderAn organisation or company outside thedirect control of the employing authorityof the visiting group, which provides allor some elements of the programmeor services required by the group, e.g.tour operator, residential centre, leisurecentre etc.Governing Body/ELB Youth SectionIn relation to schools, this refers to theschools' Board of Governors or in relationto a Statutory Youth Centre/Project, thisrefers to the Education and Library BoardYouth Sections which have managementresponsibility for all statutory youthprovision.Group LeaderThe accompanying member of staff whohas overall responsibility for the groupfor the duration of the visit.HazardThe potential for anything or anyone tocause harm.LeadersThe collective term for the adults whohave responsibility for the young people,for the duration of the visit. (This includesGroup Leader, accompanying staff andvolunteer supervisor(s)).Outside OperatorAn organisation or company whichprovides a transport service, usually on acommercial or profit making basis.ParentsThose with parental responsibilityincluding ‘guardians.’RiskThe likelihood that harm will in fact resultif nothing were done to either eliminateor in some other way control the hazardto limit its harmful potential.Volunteer SupervisorsAdults other than staff members whoparticipate in the visit, in a supervisorycapacity.Vulnerable AdultsPeople over the age of 18 years withSpecial Needs who require specificsupervision and attention.Young PeopleChildren and young adults between theages of 3 and 25 years.(covering the ages between Nursery andthe upper age limit of the Youth Service).Young People with Special NeedsChildren and young adults under theage of 18 years with Special Needswho require specific supervision andattention.Youth Service ManagerThe person who has operationalmanagement responsibility for the youthcentre or project.
CONTENTS1 Introduction 42 Context 53 Rationale 54 Definition 65 Categories of Educational Visits 66 Legal Context 77 Roles and Responsibilities 98 Code of Conduct 149 Procedures 1510 Overview of Planning Process 1911 Briefing of Leaders, Young People and Parents 2012 Risk Assessment 2213 Emergency/Contingency Arrangements 2314 Supervision and Staff Ratios 2415 Vetting 2616 Transport 2617 Insurance Cover 2718 Use of External Providers 2819 Contacts 28Forms and AppendicesEVA Educational Visits Approval Form 30EVP Educational Visit Proposal Form 31EVI Planning Checklist 33App.1 Consent Form 35App.2 Group Details 36App.3 Educational Visit Incident Record Form 37App.4 Post Visit Review 38App.5 Risk Assesement 39App.6 Young Person's Responsibilities 40App.7 Emergency Procedures 41App.8 First Aid Kits 42App.9 Working Group Members 43
1. INTRODUCTION1.1A working group, comprisingrepresentatives of key stakeholdergroups, including Education & LibraryBoards, Council for Catholic MaintainedSchools, Governing Bodies Association,Northern Ireland Council for IntegratedEducation, Education & TrainingInspectorate and schools (primary, postprimary and special) was establishedin order to review current practice inrelation to educational visits.1.2The remit of the group was to draw upa best practice document which wouldprovide guidance for all those involvedin planning and carrying out educationalvisits, in line with current thinking andin accordance with relevant Health andSafety and Child Protectionrequirements.1.5The working group recognises theenormous amount of dedication and hardwork that organisers put into making alltypes of visit happen and acknowledgesthe degree of professionalism shownby school staff and youth workerswho willingly take on these extraresponsibilities.1.6It is the earnest wish of the workinggroup that this document is used tosupport and give direction to theplanning and organisation of visits sothat they can continue to play an integralpart in the development and education ofmany of our young people.1.3The views of relevant persons andorganisations were sought throughoutthe process of producing this document.In addition, province wide consultationwas undertaken before the publication ofthe final document.1.4The working group wishes to puton record its total support for thewidespread practice of involving youngpeople in such visits and recognisethe tremendous personal value thatthe participants derive from theseexperiences.
2. CONTEXT 3. RATIONALE2.1Young people derive considerablebenefit from taking part in educationalvisits. In particular, they haveopportunities to participate in activitiesand gain from experiences not availablein the normal classroom or youthsetting. Such educational visits helpyoung people to develop a wide range ofvaluable personal and social skills.2.2The majority of educational visits takeplace without incident and it is clear thatthose involved in planning and managingsuch visits are already demonstrating ahigh level of care, competence andsafety awareness.2.3However, following a number of seriousincidents involving young people, thereis a growing concern amongst staff andparents that further steps are required inorder to promote the highest standardsof safety on educational visits.2.4Potential hazards should not discourageteachers and youth workers fromundertaking educational visits. However,good planning and attention to safetywill reduce the number of accidents andlessen the seriousness of any that mayoccur.3.1This guidance on best practice has beendeveloped in order to underpin theplanning and implementation processesrequired for the successful and safecompletion of educational visits, asdefined in this document (See Section 4).3.2Schools and youth groups, should ensurethat all educational visits undertaken bytheir staff conform to best practice.3.3The aim of this document is to assistthose involved in the planning andmanagement of educational visits,through the identification of roles andresponsibilities, the clarification ofprocedures and the exemplification ofbest practice.3.4For further clarification the followingpublications may be consulted:Pastoral Care in Schools – ChildProtection – DENI (1999), DENI (2001)and supplements (2002).Health and Safety of pupils onEducational visits - DFEE (1999) andDFES supplements (2002).2.5Adherence to this guidance shouldreassure teachers and youth workersthat they have followed best practice.
4. DEFINITION4.1Within this document the term‘educational visits’ refers to:‘all academic, sporting, cultural, creativeand personal development activities,which take place away from the youngpersons’ school or youth setting, andmake a significant contribution tolearning and development of thoseparticipating’5. CATEGORIES OFEDUCATIONAL VISITSCategory 1Visits which take place on a regular basis.(Non hazardous) and occur largelywithin establishment hours e.g. sportingfixtures, swimming pool visits and outingsCategory 2One-off day /evening excursions(Non hazardous)e.g. field study trips, theatrevisits, business/education visits,regional sporting fixturesCategory 3Residential visits of one or morenights within the UK or Ireland.(Non hazardous)e.g. visits to residential centres, fieldcentres, youth and school exchangesCategory 4Residential visits outside the UK or Ireland(Non hazardous)e.g. international exchange visits,sporting events, cultural activitiesand international community workCategory 5Hazardous Activities – residentialand non-residentialas exemplified below:Hill walkingFieldworkCycling/ mountain bikingOrienteeringRock climbing/abseilingCaving and potholingKayakingOpen canoeingWindsurfingDingy sailingSub-aquaSkiing/ SnowboardingHorse ridingAnglingWaterskiingRaftingRowingSurfingBouldering/ Gorge walkingSwimming in open water
6. LEGAL CONTEXT6.1Under the common law, children, as withcertain other groups of citizens, arelegally entitled to receive specialcare and attention, in terms oftheir welfare and safety, by those inwhose charge they are placed.6.1.2The safety and welfare of children whilein the charge of others is specificallyaddressed through a number ofstatutes, the basic requirements ofwhich are set out below.6.2Common Law Duty of Care (civil duty)6.2.1Within the context of this document,the common law ‘duty of care’ (a dutywhich is discharged daily by teachingstaff and others who have a supervisoryrole with young people) relates to thoseactivities which take place outside theschool or youth centre/project setting.6.2.2The consequences of not adequatelydischarging common law ‘duty ofcare’ can be insured against underemployee liability and public liabilityinsurance provisions. It is nonethelessincumbent upon staff who are supervisingyoung people to act reasonably in allcircumstances, so that the personal safetyand well-being of those in their careare not jeopardised during the visit.6.3Health and Safety at Work (criminal duty)6.3.1The employing authority is legallyobliged, to ensure that the health andsafety of its employees and youngpersons in their care is safeguardedwhile in any way affected by suchemployer’s undertakings.6.3.2This duty is imposed through occupationalhealth and safety statute, specificallyunder The Health and Safety at Work (N.I.)Order 1978, and places responsibilityupon employing authorities to ensurethat their management arrangements ingeneral, (but also those arrangementswhich encompass specific activitiessuch as educational visits) areadequate to protect the health andsafety of all those in any way affectedby such employer’s undertakings.6.3.3The manner in which such arrangementsare developed is through the processof a risk assessment (See Section 12),the outcome of which acts as the basisfor the organisation to establish thatwhich needs to be put in place to allowthe activity to proceed in a way whichsufficiently manages the risks to whichparticipants may be exposed.6.4The Children (Northern Ireland) Order19956.4.1The legal framework to protect childrenfrom harm is primarily provided by theChildren (Northern Ireland) Order 1995which became law on 4 November1996 and repeals virtually allpre-existing legislation concerned withchild protection. The central thrustof the Order is that the welfare of theyoung person must be the paramountconsideration and it is this essentialprinciple which underpins effectivepractice in the area of Child Protection.6.4.2The Order and associated guidanceis reflected at local level throughthe publication of Child ProtectionPolicies and Procedures by the Area ChildProtection Committees within each ofthe four Health Boards. This guidancearticulates more specifically theresponsibilities of the statutory agencies,including education and identifies withinthe local context, the relevant contactpersonnel with responsibility for ChildProtection within the respective statutoryorganisations.
6.4.3The basic principles of Child Protectionmust always be borne in mind whenundertaking an educational visitparticularly where it includesa residential element.The young person’s welfaremust always be paramount and thisoverrides all other considerations.All young people have thefundamental right to beprotected from harm.Young people have a right to beheard, to be listened to and to betaken seriously.Careful consideration must be givento young people who have specialeducational needs, as such childrenmay be especially vulnerable.6.5 Data ProtectionA range of information is requiredfor the purpose of organising andreviewing an educational visit. Thisinformation is covered by the provisionsof the Data Protection Act, 1998. Asignature on such a form is deemed tobe an authorisation to allow the schoolor youth centre/project to processand retain the information for thepurpose(s) stated.
7. ROLES ANDRESPONSIBILITIESThe successful planning andimplementation of an educationalvisit requires a contribution froma number of key personnel andgroups. Careful co-ordination andclarity of roles are vitally important.This section outlines the rolesand responsibilities of each.7.1 School or Youth Centre/ProjectThe responsibility for any educationalvisit rests with the School or YouthCentre/Project organising the activity.7.2 The Principal or Youth Service ManagerIt will normally be the Principal/YouthService Manager, with the agreementof the governing body/ELB YouthSection, from whom permission mustbe obtained before a visit takes place.7.3 Governing Body/ELB Youth Section7.3.1Governing Bodies or ELB YouthSections have a central role to playin endeavouring to ensure thatthe best practice, in relation toeducational visits, is developed andimplemented within the organisation.In pursuance of this aim the GoverningBody/ELB Youth Section should:• ensure that visits have specificeducational objectives• satisfy itself that risk assessment hasbeen carried out and that appropriatesafety measures are in place• ensure that all arrangements complywith the organisation’s Child Protectionand Health and Safety Policies.7.4 Educational Visits’ Co-ordinator7.4.1It is recommended that anindividual member of staff isdesignated as the Educational Visits Coordinatorin relation to individual schools.7.4.2This may be addressed in a numberof ways depending on the size andnature of the school:The Principal may take onthis role, or other persondesignated by the PrincipalIn a larger school anothermember of staff maybe designated as the educationalvisits co-ordinator for all visits e.g.vice-principal, senior teacher.7.4.3Ultimately, it is the Principal withagreement of his/her Governing Body,whose permission must be obtained.7.4.4In relation to statutory Youth Centres/Projects, the relevant Education andLibrary Board Youth Section, throughits line management structures willdesignate Youth Service Managers toapprove Educational Visits in YouthCentres/Projects, as appropriate.7.4.5Whichever the case, it isrecommended that the responsibilityfor ensuring that the criteriaoutlined below are addressed,rests with the person designated asEducational Visits Co-ordinator.• ensure that the Principal/Youthleader-in-charge demonstrates howproposals comply with best practice• assess and approve visit proposals• contribute to the establishment ofan acceptable code of conduct forboth leaders and young people
The educational visits co-ordinatorshould be satisfied that:• there is an acceptable code ofconduct for leaders and participants(see section 8)• the visit complies with best practice• a competent Group Leader is selected• child protection proceduresare adhered to in the planningprocess, including the vettingof volunteer supervisors• all necessary arrangements andpreparations have been completedincluding risk assessment,before the visit begins• all relevant checks have beenundertaken if an externalprovider is to be used• the Group Leader has experiencein supervising young people ofsimilar age and ability to thoseparticipating and will organise andmanage the group effectively• a school/youth contact hasbeen nominated and theGroup Leader has details• the Group Leader, accompanyingstaff, volunteer supervisors andnominated school/youth contactare aware of the agreed emergencycontingency arrangements• the Group Leader, leaders andnominated contact have all relevantinformation on the group members• establish any arrangements whichmay be required for the earlyreturn of individual participants7.4.5The Principal/Youth Service Managershould be clear concerning theirrole if taking part in the visit as anaccompanying staff member. TheGroup Leader should remain inoverall charge of the visit.• where relevant, the GroupLeader or one of the leaders issuitably qualified and competentto supervise and/or instruct theyoung people during activities• the Group Leader has takenreasonable steps to familiarise him/herself with the location/centrewhere the activity will take place• voluntary supervisors on thevisit are appropriate peopleto supervise children• the ratio of leaders to youngpeople is appropriate• proper procedures have beenfollowed in planning the visit• there is adequate andrelevant insurance cover• the Group Leader has the addressand phone number of the venue tobe visited and has a contact name10
7.5 Group Leader7.5.1A member of staff should be designatedby the Principal/Youth Service Manageras Group Leader. In the case of aschool this should be a teacher.7.5.2The Group Leader will have overalloperational responsibility for thesupervision, discipline and conduct of theparticipants for the duration of the visitand should be experienced in organisingsuch visits, the supervision of pupils, andall relevant health and safety matters.7.5.3They should be able to direct andlead young people, and be suitablyqualified/competent to instructthem in activities, as necessary.7.5.4The Group Leader has a crucial roleto play in the successful and safecompletion of an educational visit.The Group Leader should:• obtain prior agreement and approvalbefore any off-site visit takes place• appoint a deputy, if appropriate,with the consent of the Principal/Youth Service Manager• adhere to best practice• undertake and complete theplanning and preparation for thevisit including the briefing of leaders,group members and parents• ensure that all relevant checks (seesection 18) have been undertaken ifan external provider is to be used• take steps to become familiar withthe location/establishment wherethe activity will take place• inform parents as to the terms andconditions of insurance cover• collect relevant information onthe young people proposed toparticipate in the visit to assessand confirm their suitability• ensure the ratio of leaders to youngpeople is appropriate for the needs ofthe group and the nature of the activityto be undertaken (see section 14)• clearly define the role of each memberof accompanying staff and volunteersupervisors and ensure that alltasks have been clearly assigned• have proper regard to the healthand safety of the young people andensure that adequate supervisionis provided at all times• ensure that the established codeof conduct for both staff and youngpeople is adhered to (see section 8)• ensure child protectionprocedures are followed• ensure that adequate First-Aidprovision will be available• ensure that, during the visit,leaders have up-to-dateemergency contact details of:• central contact• parents/guardians• ensure that accompanying staffand volunteer supervisors andthe central contact are aware ofthe emergency procedures• ensure that the group’s leaders havethe details of group members’specialeducational or medical needs,which will be necessary for them tocarry out their tasks effectively• consider stopping the visit if the risk tothe health or safety of the young peopleis unacceptable and have in placeprocedures for such an eventuality• regularly review visits/activities• undertake and complete anappropriate risk assessment11
7.6 Accompanying Staff7.6.1Accompanying staff on educationalvisits are responsible to the schoolor youth centre/project whetherthe visit takes place within normalhours or outside those hours.7.6.2Accompanying staff must endeavourto ensure the health and safetyof everyone in the group and actas any reasonable parent woulddo in the same circumstances.Accompanying staff should:• accept the authority and follow theinstructions of the Group Leader• under direction of the Group Leader,assist with the organisation of activitiesand discipline of the young people• ensure that the established code ofconduct, for leaders and participantsis adhered to (see section 8)• consider stopping the activity andnotify the Group Leader, if theythink the risk to the health orsafety of the group members intheir charge, is unacceptable7.7 Volunteer Supervisors7.7.1To satisfy staffing ratios, it may benecessary to involve persons otherthan staff members as volunteersupervisors, for example, parents.These adults can play a very valuablepart in ensuring the safety ofgroup participants while on a visit.However, prior to any visit theyshould be clear about their role andresponsibilities during the visit.Volunteer supervisors should:• endeavour to ensure the health andsafety of everyone in the group• not be left in sole charge ofgroup members except where ithas been previously agreed aspart of the risk assessment• follow the instructions of theGroup Leader (which maybe provided in writing)and other accompanying staff, andhelp with control and discipline• speak to the Group Leader oraccompanying staff if concerned aboutthe health or safety of the youngpeople, at any time during the visit• endeavour to ensure that theestablished code of conduct, isadhered to (see section 8)7.8Central Contact Back at Base (Schoolor Youth Centre/Project)7.8.1Dealing with unexpected situations canbe aided by a central figure, who will actas the contact person for both the groupand the participants’ families. This shouldbe a responsible adult directly linked tothe school or youth centre/project whois fully briefed on the details of the visit.Central Contact should:• retain details of the place to bevisited, contact personnel andtelephone number, and mobilenumber, if appropriate• retain a copy of the contactdetails of all the participants’parents/guardians/next of kin• retain a copy of the contact details ofthe Principal/Youth Service Manager• be fully briefed and aware of his/herresponsibilities including the action totake in the event of a serious incident12
7.9Parents (or those withparental responsibility)7.9.1Parents or those with parentalresponsibility, should be able to make aninformed decision as to whether theirchild should go on the visit. However,in the interests of the overall safetyand success of the visit the ultimatedecision as to who participates restswith those involved in organising thevisit.7.9.2The Group Leader should ensurethat parents are given sufficientinformation in writing and are invitedto a briefing session, whereappropriate.Parents should :• sign the consent form• provide the Group Leader with anemergency contact number(s)• provide the Group Leader withrelevant medical/dietry details,including any medication currentlybeing taken in writing (by meansof the consent form) and any otherrelevant information (about theirchild’s emotional, psychological andphysical health) which may affecttheir participation in the visit• help prepare their child for the visit,for example, by reinforcing the visit’scode of conduct (see section 8)• agree the arrangements establishedfor a member of the group returninghome due to unforseen circumstances.7.9.3Special arrangements may be necessaryfor parents who have particular orspecial needs, for example, thosewho are hearing impaired or whosefirst language is not English.7.10Responsibilities of Young People7.10.1The Group Leader should, when briefingthe young people, make it clearthat they too have importantresponsibilities. This should beappropriate to the age and developmentlevel of the young people.Young people should:• act in accordance with the establishedcode of conduct at all times• avoid taking unnecessary risks(see section 8 & appendix 6)• follow the instructions of the GroupLeader,and leaders, includingthose at the venue of the visit• dress and behave sensiblyand responsibly• respect the property of others• be sensitive to local codes,customs, and the environment• look out for anything that might hurt orthreaten them or anyone in the groupand tell a leader of their concern7.10.2Where appropriate, young peopleshould be fully involved in the planningprocess.7.10.3General guidance for young peoplein relation to their safety oneducational visits is included inAppendix 6. Further consideration mayneed to be given to this matter whendealing with young people with specialneeds.13
9. EDUCATIONALVISTS - PROCEDURES8.8In developing and agreeing a code ofconduct, the aim should be to reflect theethos of the school or youthcentre/project, the nature of theplace(s) visited and/or theactivities undertaken.8.9The code of conduct should address issuesrelevant to the age and developmentlevel of the group members, for example:smokingdrinking alcoholuse of illegal drugs or mindaltering substancesappropriate relationshipsamongst participantsappropriate relationships with othersthey may come in contact withsecurity of personal belongingsrespect for individuals’ privacyequality of opportunityexpectations in relation to thecompletion of essential tasks9.1Great importance should be placed onthe careful planning and preparationfor all educational visits to ensure botheducational benefit and safety. In orderto assist this process the followingprocedures have been developed.9.2The very different nature of educationalvisits undertaken by schools or youthcentres/projects necessitated theestablishment of two different setsof procedures and documentationto support different types of visit ie.1 and 2 and categories 3, 4 and 5.Visits in categories 1 and 2 encompass allnon hazardous visits, both those whichoccur on a regular basis and one-offevents. This can range from taking agroup of pupils to the local swimmingpool on a regular basis or a one offattendance at a theatre production.Visits in categories 3, 4 and 5 encompassall visits which involve either a residentialelement or hazardous activities.9.3The procedures associated withboth sets of visits are set out step bystep below and, where appropriate,relevant forms are highlighted.acceptable manners andgeneral behaviour therebypromoting enjoyment by all8.10The organisation, either school or youth,has the right to refuse any young personfrom participating in the visit, whoseinvolvement may be considered to be adanger to him/herself or to the group.8.11Under no circumstances shouldpersons other than official groupmembers join the party.15
9. 4Category 1 and Category 2 recurringand one-off (non-hazardous) visitStep 1 Identification ofeducational visit - objectiveThe school or youth/centreproject identifies an area or areasof the curriculum for which aneducational visit(s) may be anessential or relevant component.Step 2 ApprovalDetails of the proposed visit(s) aresubmitted on the EVA Form to theprincipal/ youth service manager forapproval. They should be approved,and noted by the Governing Body / ELBYouth Section, before they proceed.Step 3 Implementingappropriate risk managementIt should be ensured that all visitsare organised in accordance withrelevant school/youth policies (e.g.Health and Safety and Child Protection)and take cognisance of best practice,as set out in this document.Step 4 Informing the parentsParents should be informed (perhaps, at thebeginning of each school term) about theeducational visits their children willparticipate in. It is for the individualschool or youth centre/projectto decide how this might be done, but itmight be by means of a letter. Onceparents have been informed of thesevisits they should be asked to give theirconsent in writing.Step 5 Maintaining recordsCopies of all forms (e.g. EVA andConsent Forms) and any otherrelevant information should be filedat the school or youth centre/project.In the case of an incident / accidentoccurring, all appropriatedocumentation from the relevant EmployingAuthority must be completed.16
9.5 PROCEDURES STEP BY STEP FORVISITS IN CATEGORIES 3, 4 AND 5Step 1 Identification ofeducational visit - objectiveThe school or youth centre/projectidentifies an area or areas of the curriculumfor which an educational visit may bean essential or relevant component.Step 2 Initial ApprovalDetails of proposed visit should be submittedto the Principal/Youth Service Managerfor consideration in consultation with theGoverning Body/ELB Youth Section. TheEVP should be used for this purpose andany relevant information attached eg.details of residential centre to be used.It is the responsibility of the Principal inconsultation with the Governing Body orYouth Service Manager in consultationwith the ELB Youth Section, to decidewhether a visit should proceed. It isessential, therefore, that they be consultedat the earliest opportunity. Under normalcircumstances, a minimum period of noticeof not less than 4 weeks is recommended.Detailed planning can proceed onceinitial approval has been granted.Step 3 Completion of Planning ChecklistThe appropriate sections of the planningchecklist should be completed by thosewith key responsibilities for the visit.(See page EV1 Checklist page 33/34)Step 4 BriefingsStaff, volunteer supervisors, parents andpupils, (see section 11), should be briefedabout all aspects of the educational visit.Once parents are fully aware of the visitdetails they should be asked to give theirconsent in writing. The exemplar form(Appendix 1) may be used for this purpose.In the case of young people over the ageof 18, with severe learning difficulties orvulnerable adults, consent is also required.Step 6Final Approval SecuredVisits in this category can only proceed oncefinal approval has been secured from thePrincipal/Youth Service Manager and theGoverning Body/ELB Youth Section. The EVPform should be signed by both the Principal/Youth Service Manager and the Chair ofthe Governing Body/ELB Youth Sectionto confirm approval and endorsementof the arrangements for the visit.Step 7Maintaining RecordsCopies of all forms and relevant informationshould be filed at the school or youthcentre/project. Any changes to theoriginal approved visit must be agreed, asappropriate, prior to the event taking place.An exemplar educational visit incident/accident form is included in Appendix 3. Thisform may be used by accompanying staff tokeep a record of the pertinent informationrequired of any incident or accident thatoccurs during an educational visit.The group leader should also ensure that alldocumentation required by the employingauthority in relation to any incidents oraccidents is completed as appropriate.This must be forwarded to the employingauthority as soon as is practicable.Step 8EvaluationOn return it is important to undertakean evaluation of the key aspects of thevisit. The completed evaluation shouldbe forwarded to the relevant personneland maintained by the school or youthcentre/project for future reference.Appendix 4 may be used for this purpose.Step 5 Information collatedIt is important to gather together allrelevant information about the youngpeople participating in the visit. Thisshould be collated by the group leaderand the originals retained by the schoolor youth centre/project. Appendix2 provides an exemplar form.17
189.5 Categories 3, 4 & 5 Residential and Hazardous Activities
10. OVERVIEWOF PLANNINGPROCESSiThis planning schedule has been designedas a guide to the overall planningprocess and encompasses the majorissues that need to be addressed.The proposed visit has cleareducational objectives.The nature of the visit hasbeen established.vii Leaders are fully aware of:their roles and responsibilitiesthe standard of conduct required ofthem during the visitsviii Young people and parents/guardians havebeen informed/briefed and understand theimplications of their participation in the visit.ixParents/guardians have given theirwritten consent to the young peopleparticipating in the educational visit.The target group has been identified.ii All the relevant information regardingthe proposed educational visit has beenpresented to the management e.g.destination, itinerary, timescales etc.xAll relevant information (medical, dietaryand contact details) pertaining to theyoung people participating in theeducational visit has beenobtained, recorded and appropriateaction taken where necessary.iii The management has approvedthe proposed visit.iv An initial risk assessment has beenundertaken for all aspects of the visitand appropriate control measureshave been put in place and recorded:hazards have been identifiedpeople who may be at riskhave been identifiedevaluation of the risk hasbeen undertakenadditional safety and/or controlmeasures have been establishedinformation has been disseminatedto all relevant persons andappropriate records maintainedv Where residual risks (inherent in allvisits) still prevail an appropriatecontingency/emergency plan has beenput in place and disseminatedto all relevant persons.vi The number of leaders inattendance has been agreed:a staff member has beenidentified as Group Leaderaccompanying staff havebeen identifiedvolunteer supervisorshave been identifiedvetting procedures have beenundertaken, as requiredxixiiThe transport arrangements for thegroup are appropriate for the nature/ type of journey(s) planned.Adequate insurance is in place tocover all aspects of the educationalvisit, including transport.xiii Where a residential visit is planned,the overnight accommodation hasbeen assessed as appropriate interms of:its suitability for the groupits compatibility with theobjectives of the visit(s)xiv Where the educational visit involvesoutdoor or adventurous activities, theEducational Visits Co-ordinator andGroup Leader are satisfied that :xvappropriate management structuresand systems are in place in relation tochild protection / health and safetystaff are competent to provide the activitiesall relevant checks have been undertakento ensure the above is in placeThe Educational Visits Coordinatorhas approved the operationalarrangements for the visits.xvi Final Approval is obtained, asappropriate19
11 BRIEFING OF LEADERS, YOUNGPEOPLE AND PARENTS11.1Prior to any educational visit the GroupLeader should brief all leaders, youngpeople and parents.provided with guidance on theexpectations and boundaries oftheir behaviour whilst participatingin the educational visit.2011.2 LeadersSupervision of young people isparamount. The roles, responsibilitiesand detailed duties of all leadersmust be worked out well in advanceof a visit. Unless otherwise agreed,it must be assumed that leaders areon supervisory duty at all times. It isessential that all accompanying staffand volunteer supervisors shouldbe fully briefed before agreeing toparticipate in an educational visit.11.2.1The briefing should includethe following key areas:educational purposemake-up of participating groupdetails of all planned activities,including any that are hazardousexpected level ofparticipation in activitiesarrangements for supervision,including details of rotasroles and responsibilities ofleaders and young peoplean agreed code of conducthealth and safety rulesprocedures e.g.emergency, First-Aid etccash handling arrangements,where necessary11.2.2The briefing of volunteer supervisors isparticularly important as they are notpart of the everyday life of the school oryouth centre/project and may not fullyunderstand normal practices. Therefore,volunteer supervisors must be:notified of and complete, vettingprocedures prior to participation11.3 Young People11.3.1Young people should be fullybriefed before participatingin an educational visit.11.3.2Information regarding thefollowing should be provided:educational purpose(s) of the visitdate(s)departure and return timestransport arrangementsaddress /location/accommodationdetails of all planned activities,including any that are hazardoushealth and safety rulesresponsibility for themselvesand others ( see young personsresponsibilities Appendix 6)arrangements for supervisionrole and responsibilities ofleaders and young peoplean agreed code of conductprocedures e.g. emergency,First-Aid etcany special clothing orequipment neededrecommended maximumpocket money, if appropiateliaison arrangements withschool/youth group including anemergency telephone numberdetails of arrangements relating toany participant returning home earlycash handling arrangements,where necessary
11.4 Parents11.4.1At an early stage parents/guardiansshould be informed of the proposedvisit. Where a visit includes a residentialelement, parents should have anopportunity to meet with accompanyingstaff and other volunteer supervisors.11.4.2Information provided toparents should include:purpose of visitdate(s)departure and return timeslocation for the pick up andset down of young peopletransport arrangementsaddress /location/accommodationcosts, if anydetails of insurance cover andany additional requirements11.4.4details of any medical orbehavioural condition which mayaffect their participation includingmedications, allergies etcemergency contact numberadvance permission for urgentmedical treatment if this is judged tobe necessary by medical authoritiesParents of young people under the ageof 18, and vulnerable adults, must put inplace suitable arrangements for the pickup and set down of their son/daughterprior to and after the educational visit.These must be agreed with the schoolor youth centre/project in advance.Only by direct contact with a parent orguardian and with the agreement ofthe school or youth centre/project mayan alternative to the scheduled pick upor set down locations be arranged.The Group Leader or supervisors of aneducational visit must not make ad hocpick up or set down arrangements with amember of the group.details of all planned activities,including any that are hazardousarrangements for supervisionagreed code of conductand possible sanctionsany special clothing orequipment neededrecommended maximum pocket moneyliaison arrangements with school oryouth centre/project including anemergency telephone numberdetails of arrangements relating toany participant returning home early11.4.3Parents of all young people under theage of 18, and vulnerable adults, mustbe asked to sign a consent form giving:permission for their son/daughterto participate in activities21
12 RISK ASSESSMENT12.1Educational visits cannot be entirelyrisk-free. The aim, therefore, must beto contain risks within acceptablelevels. This is achievable provided thatorganisers give careful considerationto this best practice document.12.2Care must be taken not to expose thechild to unacceptable physical orpsychological risk, particularly on thoseoccasions when the educational visitaims to exercise the individual'ssense of adventure.12.3Fundamental to the planning process ofany educational visit is the process ofrisk assessment.12.4Risk assessment allows schools andyouth groups to make a reasonedjudgement about the level of riskinvolved and what needs to be put inplace to reduce the risk to an acceptablelevel to permit the visit to go ahead.establishing additional safetyand/or control measuresdisseminating information to allrelevant persons and maintainingappropriate records12.7The Group Leader should understandthat risk assessment is a dynamicprocess and therefore must carry outon-going risk assessment duringan educational visit and ensure thatappropriate action is taken as necessary.12.8An example of an approach to RiskAssessment, using a scoringmechanism, is contained in Appendix 5.It should be recognised that thereare other examples of good practicethat already exist in schools. Existinggood practice should be builtupon and disseminated across theschool or youth centre/project.12.5This is achieved by either:i) eliminating the identifiedhazards altogether: -for example, by choosing not to usea water sports centre if the Centrestaff do not possess currentlife-saving qualificationsorii) managing hazards by introducingeffective control measures: -for example, by ensuring thatparticipants are led by competentand experienced instructors whenparticipating in adventurous activities12.6Risk assessment comprisesthe following steps:identifying the hazardsidentifying the peoplewho may be at riskevaluating the potential risk22
13 EMERGENCY/CONTINGENCYARRANGEMENTS13.1Establishing emergency proceduresis an essential part of planning aneducational visit. Everyone involved inthe educational visit should be aware ofthe procedures that are to be followedin the event of an emergency.13.2Such procedures should outline clearlywhat is to be done during the actualemergency and after the event.A possible framework to followis set out in Appendix 7.13.3Contingency planning relates to areasand circumstances which should beanticipated in advance of an educationalvisit, e.g. unsuitable weather,transportation problems, cancellationof an event, illness or injury etc.13.4Those responsible for organisingeducational visits should familiarisethemselves, and others involved, withrelevant contingency arrangements.23
14 SUPERVISION AND STAFF RATIOS14.1It is important to have the optimumratio of leaders to young people forany educational visit. Supervisionratios should relate to:the category of the educationalvisit; (Section 5)the specific educationalobjective(s) and;the outcome of a risk assessment.14.2Recommended Staffing Ratios14.3.1On the basis of a risk assessment, it islikely that additional supervision maybe required, particularly in relation tocategories 3, 4 and 5 with reference toresidential visits and hazardous activities.14.3.2Risk assessment may include therisk assessment of individual pupils,particularly within the specialschools sector. This will have a directinfluence on supervision ratios.14.2.1The Principal/Youth Service Managermust be satisfied that the ratio of leadersto young people meets recommendedlevels, and is appropiate to theeducational visit to be undertaken.14.2.2Under normal circumstances thestaff/pupil ratios detailed in thissection should not be exceeded.14.3Ratios - RequirementsAge Group Age RatiosPRE-SCHOOL Nursery one adult for up to a maximum of six young peoplePRIMARYFoundation Stage (P1/P2) 4/6 one adult for up to a maximum of ten young peopleKey Stages 1 and 2 (P3-P7) 6/11 one adult for up to a maximum of fifteen young peoplePOST-PRIMARYKey Stages 3 and11/16 one adult for up to a maximum of twenty young people4 (Yr 8-12)Post-16 (Yr 13/Yr14) 16+ one adult for up to a maximum of twenty young people24
14.4The key factors which should betaken into consideration in theestablishment of appropriateratios are as follows:nature and location ofactivities to be undertakenage and ability of the groupyoung people with specialeducational and/or medical needsday visit or overnight staymixed or single gender groupexperience of supervisorystaff in off-site supervisionduration and nature of the journeytype of any accommodationcompetence of supervisory staff,both general and in relation tospecific learning activitiesrequirements of the organisation/location to be visitedcompetence and behaviourof the young peopleprevailing weather conditionsand time of yearduration and location ofplanned activities14.5The following requirementsshould also be consideredwhen establishing ratios:Under normal circumstances in postprimaryschools and post-primaryyouth centres/projects and whereit is possible in primary schools andprimary youth centres/projects,at least one male and one femaleleader should accompany mixed sexgroups, where an overnight stay isinvolved. Where this is not possible,parents must be made aware andgive their consent to the proposedarrangement prior to the visitBus drivers i.e. those employed forthe sole purpose of driving should notbe considered as supervisory staffResponsibility for participants’supervision cannot be handedover to others, even where aneducational visit is to a centrewith its own supervisory staff,unless previously agreed withall concerned from the outsetSupervision can be close or remote butit is always for the duration of the visitClose (direct) supervision occurswhen the group remains withinsight and contact of the supervisor.Remote (indirect) supervisionis planned and is subject tostringent controls, while the groupis not necessarily within directcontact or vision of the leader atall times. Both the leaders andthe group will know of eachothers whereabouts and clearlines of communication includingrendezvous points will have beenestablished. Leaders are requiredto remain in the area, in whichthe indirect supervised activitytakes place, throughout period.14.6.1In nursery, small primary and specialschools and in small youth centres/projects, the need to involve volunteersupervisors is an accepted practice.14.6.2To recruit suitable personsit may be necessary to:cluster with another nursery,primary school or youth grouplink with a local post-primary schoolestablish co-operative arrangementswith community groupsenlist governorsenlist parentsenlist appropriate board personnel25
15 VETTING16 TRANSPORT15.1In the context of educational visits,it is essential that the school’s/youthcentre's/project's Child ProtectionPolicy and procedures are followed.15.2This includes the requirement to ensurethat staff who work with, or have accessto young people have been subjectto appropriate vetting procedures.Although the Department of Educationguidance is framed in terms of schools,the procedures outlined are equallyrelevant to the Youth Service.15.3The need to vet volunteer supervisorsshould be made on the basis of theirhaving ‘substantial access to children’.Participation in an educational visit,particularly those with a residentialelement, would provide such access.15.4Therefore, it is required that all adults,who accompany groups of young peopleunder the age of 18 are vetted in linewith the employing authority procedures.15.5The procedure is relativelystraightforward. The adult inquestion provides relevant detailsand gives permission for relevantchecks to be carried out. The school/youth group should deal with thisinformation in the normal manner.15.6In addition, schools and youth groupsneed to be satisfied that places tobe visited, particularly residentialcentres, have similar procedures inplace for their own staff, who also havesubstantial access to young people.16.1The management of the school oryouth centre/project, must be satisfiedthat all the transport arrangementsmeet the legal statutory requirementsfor the type of journey proposed.16.2Areas to consider:that the operator holds a validOperator’s Licence (this can bechecked out by contacting the DOEor looking at their web site)the mode of transport is appropriateto the needs of the young peoplethere is adequate supervisionduring transitthose involved in driving hold therelevant licence to drive the vehiclethose involved are insuredappropriatelyguidance on the transportarrangements relevant to theparticular group, e.g. age and/or developmental needs16.3Where schools or youth centres/projects require the use of outsideoperators to provide transport, it iscrucial that they are satisfied thatthe operator(s) can demonstratehow they meet the above criteria.16.4Where leaders or parents choose totransport young people in their cars,organisers of the visit should:satisfy themselves that thevehicle is licensedand insured for the purposeseek the agreement of the parentsof the young people involvedsatisfy themselves that private carusers do not carry more passengersthan the number of seat belts availabledo so in accordance with theorganisation’s Child Protection policy26
17 INSURANCE COVER17.1The school or youth centre/projectmust ensure, well before the groupdeparts, that adequate insurancearrangements are in place.17.2Principals/Youth Service Managersshould clarify with their employingauthority what insurance provisionalready exists and what additionalcover may need to be arranged.17.8No person acting on behalf of a schoolor youth centre/project shouldsign an indemnity for any outsidebody against liability without it firstbeing checked and approved by therelevant employing authority.17.3Parents should be informed of whichresponsibilities the school or youthcentre/project accepts and the scopeof any insurance cover the school oryouth centre/project is to arrange.17.4Copies of the insurance scheduleshould be made available to parents asearly as possible in the booking process.17.5The employing authority and/or insurance company canadvise on particular types ofinsurance requirements and coverarrangements, for example:- personal injury- medical cover for leadersand group members- third party in relation to loss ordamage to property- specialised risk activities(often excluded fromstandard policies)17.6Additional arrangements may benecessary to obtain insurance cover for:- activities abroad and activitiesof a potentially hazardous nature- participants with medical conditions- cancellations or otheremergency situations17.7The Group Leader should scrutinisecarefully the conditions, list of exclusions,and limits on cover in any policy providedby an outside organisation. If there isany doubt, the insurer should be askedfor clarification before departure. TheGroup Leader may need to seek furtheradvice from the employing authority orinsurance company if not completelysatisfied with the insurance cover.27
18 USE OF EXTERNALPROVIDERSThe term ‘External Providers’ refers toother organisations or companies whichprovide a service that is outside thedirect control of the Employing Authoritye.g. Tour Operators, Specialist ActivityProviders, Residential Centres etc.Where a school or youth centre/projecthas opted to use the services of an‘External Provider’ the Principal/YouthService Manager must ensure that:employing authority policy andprocedures are followed in relationto the use of such providers19 CONTACTSGeneral Advice and guidance onthe planning and implementation ofeducational visits can be accessed from thefollowing organisations.SEELBWELBGrahamsbridge RoadDundonald BELFAST BT16 2HSTel: 028 905662000e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgFax: 028 90566266/7Campsie house1 Hospital Road OMAGH BT79 0AWTel: 028 8241 1411e-mail: email@example.comFax: 028 8241 1400providers are reputable and havethe necessary insurance in placefor the services they providestaff involved in the delivery ofthe service are competent andare aware of their roles andresponsibilities in relation to thegroup and child protectionadequate emergency and contingencyplans and procedures are in place inthe event of unforeseen circumstances.These prerequisites should be ascertainedin writing from the external provideras part of a risk assessment.Note:A compulsory licensing scheme forOutdoor Activity Providers, whichendorses the provider’s competenceto deliver activities to young people(under 18s) exists in England, Scotlandand Wales. Group Leaders shouldtherefore take cognisance of theirchosen provider’s licence and note theactivities which they are licensed tooffer. Not all activities require a licence.Further details can be obtained from theAdventure Activity Licence Authority.There is no such requirement or structurein place at present for the licensing ofoutdoor activity providers in NorthernIreland.BELBNEELBSELBCCMSNICIECnaG40 Academy StreetBELFAST BT1 2NQTel: 028 9056 4000e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgFax: 028 9033 1714County Hall182 Galgorm RoadBALLYMENA Co. Antrim BT42 1HNTel: 028 2565 3333e-mail: email@example.comFax: 028 2564 60713 Charlemont PlaceARMAGH Co. Armagh BT61 9AXTel: 028 3752 3811028 3751 2200e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgFax: 028 3751 2490Council for CatholicMaintained Schools160 High StreetHOLYWOOD Co Down BT18 9HTTel: 028 9042 6972e-mail: email@example.comFax: 028 9042 4255Northern Ireland Councilfor Integrated EducationAldersgate House13-19 University RoadBELFAST BT7 1NATele: 028 9023 6200e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgFax: 028 9023 6237Foras na GaeilgeWestgate House2-4 Queen StreetBELFAST BT1 6EDTele: 028 9089 0970email: email@example.com
Educational Visits Approval FormEVA(For use in relation to visits in categories 1 and 2 only)Year 20 _____________Term _____________ Dates _______________ to _______________ActivityEducationalObjective(s)Frequency(dates)No of Pupils/YoungPeopleYeargroup(s)/age rangeCategory(1 or 2)Approved __________________________________________________ / _________________________________Signed Principal/Youth Service ManagerDate:30Approved __________________________________________________ / _________________________________Signed Chair of Governors/ELB OfficerDate:
Educational Visits ProposalEVP(To be completed in relation to visits in categories 3, 4 and 5 only)Name of School or Youth Centre/Project:* Name and address of otherschool/s or youth centres/projectsinvolved (if applicable):Educational objective of visit:Place(s) to be visited:KEY STAGEGROUP:Nursery Foundation Key Stage 1 Key Stage 2 Key Stage3/4Post-16[4-6 years] [6-11 years] [11-16 years] [16+ years]TickTotal Numbers ofYoung PersonsInvolvedYour School or YouthCentre/ProjectMaleFemale*Other School(s) orYouth Centre(s)/Project(s)MaleFemaleCategory of visitCircle as appropriate3 4 5Proposed Date(s) From: ......./......./....... To: ......./......./.......Number ofDays (incl):Approx costper pupil31
Activities to beundertaken:Staff &otheradultsinvolvedName Male Female School or YouthCentre/ProjectStatusDate &Time ofattendanceTransportArrangements:Organising Company:Agency (if relevant):Other commentsor information:Principal's/YouthService Manager'sSignature:Date:Chair of Governor's/ELB Officer's Signature:Date:32The information on this form is requested for the purpose of organising an educational visit. The information is coveredby the provisions of the Data Protection Act, 1998. Your signature to the form is deemed to be an authorisation by youto allow the school or youth centre/project to process and retain the information for the purpose(s) stated.
EV1PLANNING CHECKLISTSchool/Youth Group: …………………………………………………………………………..Date of visit from ………………………..to …………………………..Venue: …………………………………………………………………………...Group Leader : ……………………………………………………………..iiiiiiivThe proposed visit has clear educational objectives.The nature of the visit has been established.The target group has been identified.All the relevant information regarding the proposededucational visit has been presented to themanagement e.g. destination, itinerary, timescales etc.The management has approved the proposed visit.An initial risk assessment has been undertaken for all aspectsof the visit(s) and appropriate control measures havebeen put in place and recorded:Yes No N/Avvihazards have been identifiedpeople who may be at risk have been identifiedevaluation of the risk has been undertakenadditional safety and/or control measures havebeen establishedinformation has been disseminated to all relevantpersons and appropriate records maintainedWhere residual risks (inherent in all visits) still prevailan appropriate contingency/emergency plan has beenput in place and disseminated to all relevant persons.The number of leaders in attendance has been agreed:viia staff member has been identified as Group Leaderaccompanying staff have been identifiedvolunteer supervisors have been identifiedvetting procedures have been undertaken (where necessary)Leaders are made fully aware of:their roles and responsibilitiesthe standard of conduct required of them during the visits33
EV1viii Young people and parents/guardians havebeen informed/briefed and understand theimplications of their participation in the visit.ixxxixiiParents/guardians have given their written consent tothe young people participating in the educational visit.All relevant information (medical, dietary and contactdetails) pertaining to the young people participatingin the educational visit(s) has been obtained, recordedand appropriate action taken where necessary.The transport arrangements for the group are appropriatefor the nature / type of journey(s) planned.Adequate insurance is in place to cover all aspectsof the educational visit, including transport.xiii Where a residential visit is planned, the overnightaccommodation has been assessed as appropriate in terms of:its suitability for the groupits compatibility with the objectives of the visitxiv Where the educational visit involves outdoor oradventurous activities, the Education Visits Coordinatorand Group Leader are satisfied that:appropriate management structures and systems are inplace in relation to child protection / health and safetystaff are competent to provide the activitiesall relevant checks have been undertaken to ensure theabove are in placexvThe Educational Visits Co-ordinator has approved theoperational arrangements for the visits.xvi Final Approval is obtained, as appropriate.34
Appendix 1CONSENT FORMSchool or Youth/Centre Project Name:Date:I consent to my son / daughter*…………………………………………...................................(Name in full)taking part in the educational visit to be held on……………………………..................................…………I confirm that he/she* is medically fit to participate.* delete as appropriatePlease give details of:1. Any current medical condition/any medication being taken…………………………………………………...................................................................................................…..……………………………………………………………………..........................................................………………….………………………………………………………………………………………..........................................................2. Any other relevant information which may affect his/her participation in thevisit (including allergy or dietary requirements)…………………………………………………...................................................................................................…..……………………………………………………………………..........................................................………………….………………………………………………………………………………………..........................................................3. Emergency contact numbers:Home: ………………………………………………………..Work: …………………………………………………………Mobile: ……………………………………………………….Other: ...................................................................I accept the established code of conduct for the educational visit and agree to thearrangements relating to my son/daughter returning home from the visit due to unforeseencircumstances.I agree to my son/daughter receiving emergency medical treatment, including anaesthetic,as considered necessary, by the medical authorities present. I understand the extent andlimitations of the insurance cover provided.Signed ……………………………………………………………… (Parent/Guardian)Date………………………………………The information on this form is requested for the purpose of organising an educational visit. The information is coveredby the provisions of the Data Protection Act, 1998. Your signature to the form is deemed to be an authorisation byyou to allow the school or youth centre/project to process and retain the information for the purpose(s) stated.35
Appendix 2Educational VisitsGroup Details Date:Name Date ofBirthGenderM/FWaterActivitiesYes/NoMedical Condition(If Any)Special Dietary Needs Comments/Remarks36
Educational Visit Incident Record FormAppendix 31 Name of School or Youth Centre/Project2 Name of Group Leader3 Date, Time and Location of Incident4 Name and address(es) of witness(es)(a)…………………………………………………………………………….(b) ……………………………………………………………………………(c)…………………………………………………………………………….5 Please state in your own words what happened including details of names and status of thoseinvolved6 Describe what action was taken (e.g. details of First-Aid, police or medical involvement)Signed………………………………Date ………………….........The information on this form is requested for the purpose of organising an educational visit. The information is coveredby the provisions of the Data Protection Act, 1998. Your signature to the form is deemed to be an authorisation byyou to allow the school or youth centre/project to process and retain the information for the purpose(s) stated.37
Appendix 4Post Visit ReviewGroup Leader:Visit to:Dates:To:Please comment on the following:-IssueResponseWas the venue suitable?Was the accommodation / food /equipment of a suitable standard?Were the venue staff competent ?Were the travel arrangementsappropriate?Were the educational objectives met?Was the content of programmerelevant to the group?Were the young people effectivelybriefed prior to the visit?Were agreed procedures followed byall in a supervisory capacity?Are there any specific issues which needto be addressed as a result of this visit?Other Comments:Signed Group Leader:Date:38The information on this form is requested for the purpose of organising an educational visit. The information is coveredby the provisions of the Data Protection Act, 1998. Your signature to the form is deemed to be an authorisation byyou to allow the school or youth centre/project to process and retain the information for the purpose(s) stated.
RISK ASSESSMENTAppendix 5This is an example of an approach to Risk Assessment, using a scoring mechanism. It should berecognised that there are other examples of good practice that already exist in schools andyouth centres/projects. Such good practice should be built upon and disseminated across thewhole school.Risk assessment can be undertaken by identifying the hazards and then assessing the risk. Notethat a hazard is anything with the potential to cause harm. Risk is the likelihood of harm fromthe hazard being realised.Probability of occurrence Score Consequence of outcomeHighly unlikely to ever occur 1 Slight inconvenienceMay occur but very rarely 2 Minor injury requiringFirst-AidDoes occur but only rarely 3 Medical attention requiredOccurs from time to time 4 Major injury leadingto hospitalisationLikely to occur often 5 Fatality or serious injuryleading to disabilityRisk = Probability of occurrence x Consequence of outcomeThe level of risk can be calculated by multiplying probability by consequence,so providing a theoretical maximum score of 25. If the resulting scoretotals 10 or more then active management of the risk is required.The vital issue is whether the risk can be managed. If there are doubts that the riskis manageable, then it is advisable to change the activity and/or the location. Wherethere is considerable concern as to the outcome, it is better to abandon and redesignthe educational visit than to expose young people to an unacceptable level of risk.Group Leaders must fully record their risk management decisions on paper.‘As with much health and safety legislation and regulations the paper at the end of theprocess is of minor significance compared to the professional judgement of the group.As risk management is becoming recognized in all walks of life it is important thatyoung people become involved in the process at the earliest possible stage.’ (TeachingGeography, Vol. 25, No. 2, April 2000,p. 74) Schools and youth groups need to developyoung people’s understanding of risk. This will then equip and prepare them to undertakerisk assessment and help them to determine how risk can or cannot be managed.39
YOUNG PERSON’S RESPONSIBILITIESGeneral• Always think about your own and others’ safety.• If you have a problem or are worried about something, alwaystell someone whom you trust. This may be your teacher, youthleader, or course organiser – don’t suffer in silence!• If you have particular health or dietary needs, tell thesupervising adults and/or the organiser.Appendix 6• Always follow the instructions of your Group Leader and leaders, including those at thevenue of the visit.• If you do get lost or separated follow the procedures agreed for such an occurrence(see Appendix 7). If totally disorientated and confused go to a public place whereyou will be seen by lots of people and where you can ask for directions.• If approached by someone you don’t know in a threatening or concerning manner, justwalk away.• If travelling on a bus or train and someone makes you feel unsafe, move toa different seat, preferably closer to the driver or other passengers.• Personal travel arrangements should be carefully planned. Ensure you are familiarwith whoever is transporting you and never travel alone in vehicles with strangers.• Ensure that safety rules set out in Highway Code and Green Cross Code are followed.• Be aware of situations which may cause you harm or injury and wherenecessary inform a responsible adult (e.g. leader) about your concern.• Dress and behave sensibly and responsibly.• Be sensitive to local codes and customs.• Think things through carefully before you act and do not take unnecessary risks.When participating in Visits abroad• Always pack your own suitcase and never carry items for anyone else.• Learn the telephone numbers of the emergency services in the country youare visiting before you leave and make sure that you keep them handy.• When out and about always carry details of where you are stayinge.g. address, telephone number and contact details.• Always keep enough money to make a telephone call.• If personally carrying essential documentation, money or valuables,keep them secure in either an inside pocket, bum-bag, money belt orsomething similar – choose whichever is comfortable for you.Never:• Travel on a moped, motor scooter or motor bike during your visit.40
EMERGENCY PROCEDURESAppendix 7• Emergency procedures must be established by the Group Leader and mustbe communicated to and understood by all members of the party.• The Group Leader should ensure that adequate First Aid provision isavailable. A list of contents for a First Aid Kit is suggested in Appendix 8.• In the event of a young person being injured, specialist help must be sought asappropriate and parents informed as soon as possible. Where the accident/injury isserious the Principal or youth leader in charge should be contacted. Responsibility forinforming relevant authorities rests with the Principal or Youth Service Manager.• If it is necessary, due to the seriousness of the circumstances, for the parents to visitthe young person(s), the Principal or Youth Service Manager in conjunction with thegoverning body/ELB youth section should make arrangements for them to do so.• A ‘lost’ procedure should be known in advanced byevery member of the group including:- action to be taken if separated from the group or lost- advice on where assistance may be sought- notifiable personnel and contact details- notification of safe return• If any leader has cause to believe that a young person has beenabducted or has absconded the Police must be notified.41
Appendix 8FIRST- AID KITSFirst-Aid kits should contain sufficient quantities of suitable First-Aid material appropriate tothe visit environment. For most First-Aid kits, sufficient quantities could be considered as:a general guide card on First-Aid;20 individually wrapped sterile adhesive dressings(assorted sizes) appropriate for the environment2 sterile eye pads, with attachments6 individually wrapped triangular bandages6 safety pins6 medium sized individually wrapped sterile, unmedicatedwound dressings (approximately 10cm x 8cm)2 large sterile individually wrapped, unmedicatedwound dressings (approximately 13cm x 9cm)3 extra large sterile individually wrapped, unmedicatedwound dressings (approximately 28cm x 17.5am)sterile water or sterile normal solution in sealed disposable containersfor use in situations where mains tap water is not available. (Eachcontainer should hold 300ml and at least 3 containers should beprovided. Once opened, the containers must not be re-used.)42
Appendix 9Mrs Paula Smith Chair Adviser Environment & Society – SEELBMr Trevor Quinn Deputy Chair Ardnabannon Outdoor Education CentreMr Peter Corr Secretary AAO – Environment & Society – SEELBMr John StevensonMr Peter McNultyMr Jeremy StewartMr Oliver SherryMr Jim KeithMrs Sheila CreaDr Robert JenningsMr Robert HunterLorna GardinerMr Trevor HaganMr John DonnellyMs Liz CroweMr David OrrMr Brendan O ReillyMr Owen DoodyMs Carol BurrowsCathy BellMrs Margaret HarteMr Gerry CorrMs Helen LeithMs Laura McAlpineMr Roy DowneyPrincipal, Sullivan Upper School, HolywoodPrincipal,Christ the King Primary School,OmaghPrincipal, Newtownards Model Primary SchoolPrincipal, Sperrinview School, DungannonPrincipal, Belfast Boys’ Model School, BelfastPrincipal, Assumption Grammar School,BallynahinchPrincipal, Slemish College, BallymenaPrimary Adviser – SEELBFoundation Stage Adviser – NEELBLegal & Insurance Section – NEELBSports Development Officer – BELBCurriculum Officer CASS – BELBHealth & Safety Officer – SELBHealth and Safety Manager – BELBWELBChild Protection Officer – SELBAdviser, SELBAssistant Education Officer – Special – WELBHealth & Safety Officer – CCMSPolicy Development Officer – CCMSNICIEInspector - ETI43