Safeguarding and school trips

Safeguarding and school trips

Every school trip requires a lot of pre-planning and risk assessment by school staff. But what about staff at the destination? Whether it is a zoo, museum, castle, activity centre or any of our other fantastic organisations who educate and entertain, what is and should be expected of their staff with regards to safeguarding and duty of care?

Keeping Children Safe in Education

According to the Department for Education Statutory Guidance, Keeping Children Safe in Education (KCSIE), “safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is everyone’s responsibility” and “everyone who comes into contact with children and their families and carers has a role to play in safeguarding children”.

Throughout any typical school, day children come into contact with adults and people in positions of trust who are not directly employed within their own educational setting. This obviously extends even further when a school organises an educational or residential trip. Staff or volunteers who are not appointed by the school itself still have the same duty of care.

Safeguarding policies

KCSIE identifies that all staff members should be aware of the school's staff behaviour policy (sometimes called a code of conduct) which should, amongst other things, include acceptable use of technologies and staff/pupil relationships, and that copies of policies should be provided to staff at induction.

Schools should expect all professionals whom they appoint to have their own set of policies but may want to provide copies of the school’s policies to ensure there is consistent messaging and support.

Safer recruitment

EduCare’s partner Robin Watts, our partner who co-wrote our Child Protection and Safer Recruitment training courses, advises that “strong safeguarding procedures are a huge inhibitor to a potential child abuser looking to gain access to children”. Companies and organisations that facilitate school trips should be clear about their safeguarding policies and take active measures to ensure staff and volunteers are thoroughly checked before they begin working with children.

Health and Safety

The Health and Safety Executive has published a document that tackles the myths about school trips and outdoor learning activities.

In it, they outline that they fully support schools arranging a wide range of out-of-school activities, which can include visits to zoos or museums, trips to the countryside or taking part in challenging and adventurous activities. They want to make sure that mistaken and unfounded health and safety concerns do not create obstacles that prevent these from happening.

Again, the partner organisation should have clear guidance and understanding of H&S and risk associated with the activity.

How can EduCare help?

EduCare for Education® is our best-selling safeguarding service and is sold on an unlimited basis. This means that schools can extend access to the complete training suite to all staff, support staff and volunteers. This will help provide peace of mind that everyone, no matter of their role or responsibility, is trained to understand safeguarding issues warning signs and understand how to take action. A wide range of organisations and charities use the package of courses within EduCare for Education® as they work extensively with schools and want to ensure they are trained to the same high level. Speak to one of our expert advisors today to find out more.

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