Educational Visits for EYFS Children by malj


									                Guidance on Policy on Educational Visits for EYFS Children

Independent schools vary widely in terms of their size, pupil population, location, provision
and practice. The attached document is offered as guidance to help schools to prepare their
own policy in a way that suits their own circumstances and reflects the needs of their own
community. Remember, the following information is for guidance only. Before using it, and
particularly after adapting it, schools should consult their own professional advisers.

Please note that, where an insertion is required, square brackets are used without text or with
suggested text. Other square brackets indicate optional or alternative clauses.

  The ISBA acknowledges the assistance provided by guidance documents prepared by the
            following public bodies, charities and not for profit organisations:

      The Department for Children Schools and Families (DCSF)
      The Independent Schools’ Inspectorate (ISI)
      The Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED)
      The Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

                                    The ISBA is grateful to:

      The Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS )for their assistance with this
      Mr Nick Stiven of Chafyn Grove School and Mr Hugh Wilding of Claires Court
       Schools, both of whom assisted with this document
      HSBC Insurance Brokers Ltd (

                                           May 2010

ISBA May 2010

   A Legal Requirement incorporated into the EYFS Statutory Framework, an ISI Reporting
               Standard for Independent Schools with Early Years provision,
A: The Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework, 2008 (
B: The Health and Safety of Pupils on Educational Visits: A Good Practice Guide, DCSF
guidance (
C: Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Checklist and Monitoring Reference for Inspectors,
September 2009 (
D: A Guide to the Law for School Governors, April 2009 (
E: General Inspection Queries, but with particular reference to EYFS, Independent School
Association (ISA) guidance ( an ISBA Briefing Document, February
F: Minibus and Coach Seats: DFT guidance (
G: Independent Schools Inspectorate Handbook for the Inspection of Schools, January 2010

                              REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

Extracts from Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Checklist and Monitoring Reference for

“Children must be kept safe whilst on outings. “For each type of outing, providers must
carry out a full risk assessment, which includes an assessment of required adult: child
ratios. This assessment must take account of the nature of the outing, and consider whether it
is appropriate to exceed the normal requirements (as set out in the Early Years Foundation
Stage Statutory Framework document), in accordance with the provider’s provision for
supervision of children on outings.”
“This assessment must be reviewed before embarking on each specific outing.”
“Providers should obtain written parental permission for children to take part in
outings. Providers should take essential records and equipment on outings, for example,
contact telephone numbers for the parents of children on the outing, first aid kit,a mobile
phone. Records should be kept about vehicles in which children are transported, including
insurance details and a list of named drivers. Drivers using their own transport should have
adequate insurance cover.”“There must be at least one person on outings who has a
paediatric first aid certificate. First aid training must be approved by the local authority and
be consistent with guidance set out in the Practice Guidance for Early Years Foundation

All Independent Schools

ISI Regulation 3(2)(c) states:
“The School shall draw up and implement effectively a written policy to-_
.....safeguard and promote the welfare of children who are pupils at the school, which
complies with DCSF Guidance Health and Safety of Pupils on Educational Visits.”.....

ISBA May 2010

Independent Schools are legally required to have policies for educational visits made by all of
their pupils. However, the EYFS Statutory Framework places additional requirements on
schools that cater for the youngest age group.


The policy will reflect the Regulatory requirements which are both detailed and prescriptive.
Considerable preparation is needed to take a group of very young children safely out of
school in compliance with the regulations. The model policy is based upon the presumption
that EYFS outings will be much more local than visits involving older children, consisting
entirely of short outings within the neighbourhood of the school that are completed within a
half-day, or day at the most. The more stringent framework that is required for longer or
overnight visits is described in the references. .

Volunteer helpers can be useful on visits in view of the very high staff ratios; but if they are
used, the visit needs to be structured so as to ensure that they cannot be left in sole charge of
early years children, unless they possess an enhanced CRB disclosure and the relevant level 3
statutory qualification (as defined by the Children’s Workforce Development Council). The
visits policy should be available to parents; but from September 2009 schools are no longer
required to publish their arrangements for health and safety on school visits on their web sites.


    Medical Questionnaire
    Educational Visits, Model Consent Form for Educational Visits
    Risk Assessments for Early Years Outings
    Missing Child Policy
    Induction of new staff, Governors and volunteers in Child Protection
    Information for Parents of EYFS and Early Years Children

                                       MODEL POLICY

                        PART ONE: INFORMATION FOR PARENTS


[            ] school places great value on educational visits for all of its pupils, including the
very youngest, recognising that they provide a unique opportunity to enhance the curriculum
and to extend and support class based work. They provide opportunities which cannot be
provided on site and can extend the knowledge and understanding of our youngest pupils. All
of our visits for this age group are local – most last only half a day. [We do not take Nursery
children on overnight or foreign visits].

ISBA May 2010


Generous staffing levels, close supervision and proper protective clothing are essential for
even the shortest of excursions. For all walks within the enclosed school grounds, the
children are supervised by their Teacher and a Teaching Assistant who holds a level 3
statutory qualification (as defined by the Children’s Workforce Development Council). They
always take a mobile phone with them. The children are always briefed in advance about the
visit and of the standards of behaviour which we expect.

Staff Ratios and Responsibility

We operate a staffing ratio of 1:8 [the legal maximum; but many schools will voluntarily opt
for a lower number] for all off-site visits involving children in our Nursery and Reception
classes. There is always at least one Teacher, one of whom will have been designated in
charge of the visit. Our normal class size is [12], so the Teacher[s] are accompanied by [2]
qualified Teaching Assistants]. The [Teacher/one of the Teaching Assistants] is qualified in
paediatric first aid. We frequently invite parents to volunteer to help with off-site visits.
Volunteers are [checked with the CRB]/ [never allowed to supervise children alone] and are
thoroughly briefed about their roles beforehand.

The Nursery

[We do not take our Nursery children off-site during the first half of the autumn term. They
need time to settle into the routine of going to school, and there are plenty of opportunities for
daily outdoor play in the Nursery Department’s well-equipped, secure outdoor play area.
Every child in the Nursery is taken by their Teacher and their Teaching Assistant on a 15
minute weekly nature walk inside the school grounds, where they are encouraged to collect
conkers, autumn leaves, scramble over fallen logs and watch the wild life].

[At the end of the autumn term, the Nursery children, together with their Teacher and two
Teaching Assistants walk to [           ] church for the Junior School’s Carol Service, which
involves the entire Junior School community. All parents are invited to join us and to take
their children home from the church at the end of the service].

[At the end of the summer term, the Nursery children, together with their Teacher, two
Teaching Assistants and 2 volunteers, visit the local wet life sanctuary, where they look at the
birds. The sanctuary is only a 20 minute drive away from the school, so the entire visit takes
2 hours and we return by 12.00pm in time for lunch]. [We hire a small coach for the journey,
fitted with front-facing seats and seat belts, from our regular coach company, who complies
with our conditions for using hired transport (see below)].


[By the time that they move to Reception, children are ready for more excursions off-site and
for a wider range of new experiences. We arrange for regular short walks in the
neighbourhood for them to learn about the built environment and different places of work.
During the year, they will visit:

ISBA May 2010
      [A variety of local shops,
      The Fire Station
      The local museum
      The Library]

[The children’s’ creative experiences are expanded by visits to the [Children’s’ Theatre/a
production for children at the local Theatre] at the end of the autumn term and to a [Puppet
Theatre in the Spring Term]. During the summer term, they have a visit to a [City Farm, so
that they can find out where milk and eggs come from and see what animals eat]/ [zoo, so that
they can see the large mammals].

The weekly walks in the school grounds continue throughout the two years in the Nursery
Department. By the end of Reception, the children are confidently conducting work on the
topic of minibeasts and carrying out leaf and bark rubbings. Their climbing and balancing
skills will have improved, together with their understanding of the cycle of nature, such as the
first signs of spring.


All parents of children in the Nursery Department are invited to an annual curriculum meeting
at the start of the autumn term, when the aims of the year’s curriculum, the topics that will be
studied and the methods of delivering the curriculum through play, structured activities and
outdoor activities will be briefly explained. Your son’s or daughter’s school calendar lists the
visits that are due to take place over the coming [term/academic year]. We will send you a
letter well in advance, telling you about every visit and, if appropriate, its cost and whether it
involves an extension to the normal length of the school day.

All Nursery Department visits, apart from the Junior School Carol Service, return your child
to the school at their conclusion. You take your child home from the Church at the end of the
Carol Service. The Carol Service, together with the Reception Year visits to the Children’s
Theatre and the Puppet Theatre are the only visits that extend beyond the end of the normal
Nursery Department day. All visits are optional.


We require your written consent in order to take your son or daughter off-site. [The majority
of our outings take no more than an hour and involve walking to and from local landmarks or
places of interest. We notify you about these in our weekly newsletters and your child’s
homework diary. You are asked to give permission to your child taking part in these visits
once a term. We always ask permission separately for longer visits, visits involving transport,
or extra cost to you and more elaborate arrangements.]/OR
[We require your written consent every time that we take your son or daughter off-site since it
is the policy of our Governors not to permit “blanket” consent forms to be used for this age
group] Please note that we are unable to take your son or daughter without a completed and
signed consent form, at Annex A which includes details of where you may be contacted in an
emergency. . A consent form will be sent to you well in advance and must reach the school
at least [3] working days before the [first] outing or visit.

ISBA May 2010
                         PART TWO: INFORMATION FOR STAFF


Risk Assessments

Safety is our top priority. Even the shortest of visits needs to be thoroughly planned, and
requires its own risk assessment, which must be reviewed thoroughly before a repeat visit is
made. (See the model policy for conducting risk assessments for Early Years outings).

Head Counts

The Teacher in charge conducts, or arranges for another Teacher or Teaching Assistant to
conduct a head count of the children (recording the fact that we have done so):

       Before leaving school
       (If applicable) On sitting down in the coach
       On arrival at the destination
       On leaving the destination
       On arrival back at the school

Where we walk, the children walk in pairs, with one adult at the front, one in the middle and
one at the back. Children are reminded about basic road safety and of the expected standards
of behaviour. When we travel by coach, a member of staff will check that all the pupils are
sitting properly and wearing their seat belts.

Missing Child Policy

Our procedures are structured to ensure that this does not happen; but in the event that a child
is missing – either from school, or on a visit, we follow the procedures set out in our Missing
Child policy, which can be viewed on our web site.

First Aid Kit etc

The Teacher in charge takes a first aid kit, list of emergency contact numbers and a mobile
phone with [him/her] on every outing. We carry bottled water on all of our [longer] visits.


The Teacher in Charge will ring the school if there is any delay, for example, because of
heavy traffic. The School Office has copies of all permission slips and will phone the parents
to warn them of a delay.


Every visit, however local, or short, must be planned in advance by the member of staff who
is in charge of it. S/he will have had previous experience of accompanying Nursery [or junior
school] visits before organising one him/herself. S/he will also have attended an afternoon’s
training session organized by the [Head of the Junior School/Deputy Head/ the School’s
Health and Safety Manger] who holds the appointment of Education Visits Coordinator
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(EVC). The Teacher in Charge either holds a valid Paediatric First Aid Certificate
him/herself, or ensures that another member of staff accompanying the visit holds one.


If the EVC is the Head of the Junior School, s/he is responsible for approving all requests for
visits. Otherwise, s/he works closely with the Head in checking that the paperwork is correct,
gives guidance on carrying out risk assessments, budgeting for visits and on permission slips,
and keeps a “library” of reports on previous visits.


Staff in charge of pupils have a common law duty to act as any reasonably prudent parent
would do in the same circumstances. The DCSF Guidance “The Health and Safety of Pupils
on Educational Visits: A Good Practice Guide,” ( is required reading
for all Teachers in Charge of a Nursery visits as part of their training in the responsibilities of
the role. It explains that their responsibility is to “act as any reasonable parent would do in the
same circumstances.” Staff who take part in visits and activities outside school may feel
concerned about the possibility of being held personally liable if an accident should occur.
However, they can be assured that [ ] school, as their employer will always stand behind
them in the unlikely event of an accident occurring, provided they have exercised reasonable
care and followed the school’s guidelines.

[          ] school has £ [ ] M of Employers’ Liability Insurance and £ [ ] M of public
liability insurance, [as well as a group travel policy that covers any visit made by the Nursery
Department. Cover includes cancellation or delay, medical expenses, replacement of personal
possessions and money].


[It is school policy not to transport [Nursery] pupils in private cars belonging to staff.]
[At [ ] school, we expect every member of staff to complete a “Drivers’ Declaration Form”
before s/he drives pupils in a school minibus or privately owned vehicle. The completed
forms are held by the EVC. (Copies of the model forms can be downloaded from the model
document section of the ISBA web site). ] [Where a member of staff transports pupils in
his/her car, insurance cover is automatically provided through the school’s “occasional
business use” motor policy. That ensures that motor insurance claims arising whilst a
member of staff is using their own car for school business purposes can be settled without
involving their own motor insurer. Nursery children can only be transported in private cars
that are fitted with special child seats. The School can provide a limited number of booster
seats for use in cars].


No one is allowed to drive the school minibus unless s/he has qualified as a minibus driver.
For any minibus journey that involves Nursery children, there should always be a second
member of staff [who is also a qualified minibus driver]. The school will arrange and fund
First Aid courses, as well as courses in driving minibuses for all staff who are involved in
visits. [At [ ] school, we expect every member of staff to complete a “Drivers’ Declaration
ISBA May 2010
Form” before s/he drives pupils in a school minibus or privately owned vehicle. The
completed forms are held by the EVC. (Copies of the model forms can be downloaded from
the model document section of the ISBA web site)]/ [Details about the forms etc are in the
paragraph on the use of private cars].


We hire small coaches for the Nursery visit to the wet life centre and for Reception’s visits to
[         and        ]. The school has a long-standing relationship with a local company that
understands that we require all Drivers to come from our list of named drivers, to have current
CRB disclosures, and to carry mobile phones. It is a condition of booking that the Driver’s
name, the number of his/her mobile phone, together with the vehicle’s registration number,
and a copy of the vehicle’s insurance policy are passed to the Teacher in Charge at the time
that the hire arrangements are confirmed. We only book vehicles with front-facing seats that
are fitted with seat belts.


Visits made by the Nursery are all local; but nevertheless, their outline is planned at least a
term in advance, when dates need to be agreed with the EVC. Parents will be told about the
visits planned for the ensuing year at the annual curriculum meeting at the beginning of the
autumn term. At that stage, it will probably not be necessary to finalise the dates of all of the
short, local visits planned for the spring and summer terms; but a general indication can
should be given.

Actions for the Teacher in Charge

Dates need to be fixed at least [a term/six months] in advance for the following visits, where
there may be a need to draw upon accompanying staff from other parts of the Junior School,
or where parent volunteers (who may need CRB checks) are used:

      [Autumn Term: Reception visit to Children’s Theatre
      Spring term: Reception visit to Puppet Theatre
      Summer Term: Nursery visit to local wetland
       Reception visit to City Farm/Zoo]

Any visit should be organised a term in advance that:

      Involves additional cost for parents
      Needs to be booked in advance
      Needs transport to be arranged.
      [Hired transport should be booked in accordance with the school’s conditions for
       using hired transport]

At that stage:

      Parents should be invited to express an interest and be given an idea of cost.
      (If necessary) The Head of the Junior School and the Medical Centre should be
       consulted about individual children’s special and medical needs. Advice should be

ISBA May 2010
       obtained on any arrangements that may be required for a pupil’s individual special and
       medical needs
      The Bursary will need to be informed if tickets and transport need to be reserved.
      [The Bursary should be asked to arrange CRB checks and take up the necessary
       references for volunteers]

One Month in Advance

      The Parental consent forms (Annex A) should be sent out with a return date specified.
      [(If necessary) Cheques should be collected and sent to the Bursary]
      The travelling first aid kit should be booked from the Medical Centre
       A school mobile phone should be booked from [the IT Department]
      Bookings should be finalised
      [Check that the Driver is on the school’s list of named drivers, that all required details
       about the coach have been received]
      The Risk Assessment should be finalised and approved by the EVC
      Parents should be advised if special clothing (sun hats, waterproof clothing,
       wellington boots, sun cream) is needed/advisable

Two Weeks in Advance

      Parents should be chased to return their consent forms. They should be reminded that
       their child cannot participate in the visit without a completed form being received
       within [3] days of departure
      Theatre tickets should be checked and stored in the school safe
      Meeting with other members of staff participating in the visit to discuss risk
       assessment, the respective roles of the Teacher in Charge, other staff [and volunteers]
       and emergency procedures
      Prepare packs for the accompanying staff, EVC, the School Secretary, the Caretaker

       o  The itinerary (including address, phone numbers etc of all location to be visited
       o  The Teacher in Charge’s mobile number/[the school mobile]
       o  Mobile numbers of all participating staff
       o  A list of pupils, together with copies of their parental contact forms (which
          includes details of each pupils’ medical conditions)
       o Emergency contact numbers for the Head of the Junior School, Deputy Head, [the
       o Contact details for the School Secretary and Caretaker
       o The name of the Driver, the registration number of the coach, the mobile phone
          number of the driver, a copy of the vehicle’s insurance certificate
       o A copy of the risk assessment.
       o Location of local hospital
      Bottled water is ordered from the Catering Department

The Day of Departure/ Day Prior to Departure

      Remind the children of the aim of the visit and of the expected standards of behaviour
      Give information packs to recipients
ISBA May 2010
      Collect first aid pack. Check contents
      Collect school mobile phone
      Collect bottled water
      [Check that Driver and coach match the details notified by the company on the
       booking form]


Primary responsibility for the safe conduct of the visit rests with Teacher in Charge. He or
she has sole responsibility for amending the itinerary or canceling the visit in the event of
unforeseen delay or sudden deterioration in weather conditions. S/He may delegate part or all
of the responsibility for the following to one or more of the accompanying staff:

      Carrying out (and recording) head counts of the children on leaving school, on getting
       on and off each form of transport, entering or leaving a theatre, museum, centre, etc
      Checking that all pupils wear their seat belts
      Enforcing expected standards of behaviour
      Keeping account of all expenditure
      Recording any accidents or near misses


If a Pupil has a minor accident or becomes ill, the Teacher in Charge, or another member of
staff will phone his or her parent’s emergency contact number at once and arrange for him/her
to be collected. If contact cannot be made, the Teacher in Charge, or another member of staff,
will take him/her to the local hospital or, if the illness is more minor, to the School’s Medical
Centre. A member of staff will remain with the child at the hospital or Medical Centre until a
parent or carer arrives.


In the event of a serious accident resulting in the death or injury of one or more of the pupils
and staff, the Teacher in Charge’s first priority would be to summon the emergency services,
and to arrange for medical attention for the injured. One of the accompanying members of
staff should accompany the injured pupil(s) to hospital and would remain with the
child/children until their parents arrived. Ensuring that the rest of the group were safe and
looked after, and informing the Head of the Junior School/the EVC of what had happened
would be the next task for the Teacher in Charge, who would need to give as full, calm and
factual account as the circumstances permitted. Where the full facts had not yet emerged, he
or she should say so, and ensure that follow-up communications with the Head of the Junior
School are maintained. He/she would also need to arrange (perhaps using one of the other
members of staff, or the School Office) for the parents of the uninjured children to be
contacted on their emergency contact numbers and asked to collect their children from either
the venue or the school, depending upon the circumstances. The School Office would notify
the insurers as quickly as possible. A full record should be kept of the incident, the injuries
and of the actions taken.

At [  ] school, depending on the nature of the incident, we may implement our own model
communications plan for informing both the families of the injured, and the families of those

ISBA May 2010
who are unhurt as swiftly as possible. We recognise that in an era of instant communications,
it may not be possible for us to be the first to break the news. Nevertheless, we firmly believe
that we have an important duty to speak personally to the parents of any pupil who has
suffered some injury or mishap. We will use mass communication methods (SMS, email,
messages on our web, local radio) for communicating with those whose children are not

Where possible, communication with the media should be left to the Head of the Junior
School. The Teacher in Charge should refer the media to the school. If comment is
unavoidable, it should be factual, calm and no attempt made to cover gaps in knowledge.


Each Teacher in Charge is asked to provide the EVC with a report on the visit, reports of
accidents and near misses on his/her return. Personal observations and lessons learned are
always valuable. The Group leader should return all school property, [together with a report
of any lost or damaged property.]


The Teacher in charge is responsible for producing a schedule of all expenditure on the trip.

Report for Governors

The Head of the Junior School’s termly report to the Governors always contains a synopsis of
all the school trips and visits that have taken place since the last meeting. The EVC, who
prepares this report, will invite the Group Leader to draft a short report, preferably illustrated
with photographs.

ISBA May 2010
                                                                                                       ANNEX A

[Nursery/Reception] Visit to ……………On …….                    Teacher in Charge ……………..

Departing at ………hours from the school. Returning to the school at ……….hours

Nature of Activity:

Equipment Needed by your son or daughter:

Wellington Boots
Waterproof Suit

Sun Hat

Maximum number of pupils [ ], who will be accompanied by [ ] members of the teaching and [ ] Volunteers.
 [Any parent who is interested in volunteering to help on this visit should contact [ ] [S/he will normally be
                          asked to consent to the school obtaining a CRB disclosure].


  The children will walk
  Coach to and from ……………….
We only book coaches fitted with seat belts, from a company well- known to us, whose drivers are on our list of
named drivers and have been cleared with the CRB
                  with booster seats, driven by a member of staff,

Cost [            ] [Cheque enclosed]/[To be added to your bill for the next term]

Medical Information

Any allergies or sensitivities to food, pets or to insect stings:

Any chronic or recurring medical conditions needing regular or occasional medication or treatment:

Does s/he require any special arrangements to be made? If so, please describe them briefly below:

Does he/she suffer from travel sickness? [If so, may we have your permission to give him/her a travel sickness
tablet that is suitable for children aged 3 and over?]

Does he/she suffer from any phobia which might make it unsafe for him/her to participate in any of the planned
Date of last tetanus injection?
ISBA May 2010

I/ We authorise the Teacher in Charge, or an authorised deputy acting on his/her behalf to consent on the advice
of an appropriately qualified medical specialist to my/our child receiving emergency medical treatment,
including general anaesthetic, blood transfusion and surgical procedure under the NHS if he/she is unable to
contact me/us time.

Signature of both parents: ___________________                  ______________________
or Guardian

Emergency Contact Details for the period covered by the visit:

NAME:………………………….. Tel .no:………………………Mobile: …………….

Email:. …………………………… Work no:………………

NAME:………………………….. Tel .no:………………………Mobile: …………….

Email. :…………………………… Work no: ………………

FAMILY DOCTOR:………………………….. Tel .no:…………………………………….

Address: ……………………………………………………………………..

Behaviour code:

I understand that my son/daughter will be subject to the normal school rules of behaviour throughout the visit. I
agree to him/her following the guidance on health and safety given by a member of staff [or by an Instructor at a
centre] at all times.

Signed: ……………………………… Signed……………………………………….
Name: …………………………….. Name:……………………………………
Date: ……………………………….. Date: ……………………………………..

 Please note that your son/daughter will not be allowed to participate in this visit unless this form is completed
            and returned to [ ] School by [           ] and returned to [ ] School by [                ]

ISBA May 2010

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