The following is an abridged version of the CHS Excursion Policy.
Educational visits and excursions
- make education a more enjoying and rewarding experience;
- provide students with experience beyond the classroom and so contribute to their all-round growth and development;
- integrate, reinforce and supplement the curriculum offerings of the school;
- help to overcome both geographical and cultural isolation.
- enhance educational outcomes for all students by providing learning opportunities not available within the school;
- provide opportunities for social development through interaction with peers, staff and community members; and
- should include experiences ranging from urban to more remote areas.
Guidelines for the approval of excursions
- The proposed educational excursion fulfils the requirements of the Board of Studies courses and/or contributes to the achievement of aims and objectives of the school;
- The proposed educational excursion is an essential or desirable learning experience;
- There is sufficient time for adequate organisation to take place (minimum of two weeks, wherever possible);
- There is an effective learning program to be followed before, during and after the proposed excursions;
- Whole year excursions should be justified in terms of the total needs and resources of the school. Cross-curriculum planning with representation from all faculties should take place at the end of each year for the following year;
- The teacher/student ratio is adequate for the purposes of the excursion while not over-burdening staff and students remaining at school. Interested and capable parents may accompany excursions in a supportive capacity. As a general rule, the minimum teacher:student ratio should be 1:25.
- Staff and parent/community members who volunteer to assist with an excursion should not be expected to pay. These costs should be included when calculating costs to students;
- Costs must be kept to a minimum and no child should be excluded from participation on financial grounds. Students should have access to Student Assistance without suffering embarrassment if they are unable to participate due to financial hardship.
- Adequate precautions must be taken to ensure the safety of all participants. This includes provisions for adequate supervision by capable staff and other factors such as the presence of both male and female teachers (or responsible adults) when both male and female students participate in overnight excursions.
- For excursions involving swimming or water activities or overnight visits, at least one member of staff must have a current accreditation in CPR and Emergency Care. For all other excursions at least one member of staff must have current accreditation in Emergency Care. A first aid kit must be taken on all excursions.
The Organising Teacher must
- Investigate the feasibility of the excursion and negotiate with the Deputy Principal for inclusion in the school calendar.
- Organise the logistics and itinerary of the excursion (accommodation, transport, meals, booking of venues, entertainment, costings, students requirements – such as clothing, equipment, food, money, etc)
- Conduct a risk assessment and develop a risk management plan, where appropriate.
- Have parent/community volunteers who accompany students on an excursion complete a Prohibited Persons Declaration prior to the excursion.
- Inform parents/caregivers of proposed excursion as early as possible to determine the viability of the excursion and provide families with adequate time to budget and plan for their child’s involvement.
- Provide an effective program of learning before, during and after the excursion. This should include written material (worksheets, assignments, research tasks, etc.)
- Plan activities that keep free time to a minimum. When free time is provided, expectations of conduct should be clearly explained and some supervision maintained.
- Obtain an indication of the swimming ability of students from parents for excursions involving water activities;
- Ascertain the Office of Film & Literature Classification where films are to be viewed. Students must not attend any film or view a video/DVD that is rated R 18+. Films classified MA15+ are also legally restricted. Parents and caregivers must be informed of the classification of the film, the reasons for this classification (e.g. ‘Occasional violence; frequent coarse language’) and be provided with the opportunity to withdraw their child.
- Organise fund-raising where appropriate and co-ordinate with Ms Ryan in relation to the collection of money.
- Arrange for students to thank hosts at venues visited in an appropriate manner. Consider sending a formal letter of thanks.
- Be aware of, and be able to deal with, students’ medical problems (including medication).
- Ensure that seatbelts are worn on buses and coaches when they are available.
- Provide adequate, active supervision and ensure the safety of students at all times (including ensuring that students wear appropriate protective clothing and equipment when necessary).
- Explain conduct requirements to students and plan a course of disciplinary action and communicate this to students and parents prior to the excursion.
- Do not allow students to participate in any additional or alternative activity which was not originally scheduled in the program for which parental or caregiver consent would normally have been necessary.
- Have an emergency supply of money (could include teacher’s own funds which will be reimbursed by the school upon the production of appropriate receipts).
- Communicate behaviour problems to either the Principal or the Deputy immediately upon return.
- Ensure that there is a working mobile phone available.
- For overnight excursions, contact the school each day to provide progress reports, including change of itinerary, delayed departure/arrival times.
- Participation in an excursion is a privilege, not a right.
- follow the teacher’s instructions at all times;
- behave in a responsible and safe manner (including when animals are encountered);
- conduct themselves in a manner that will bring credit to the school.
Educational excursions play an important part in your child’s development. We are very conscious of keeping costs to a minimum and consider all aspects of expenses when planning. A great deal of time and effort goes into planning and organizing an educational excursion. The excursions which are conducted over 2 or more days, in particular, involve pre-payment for accommodation, transport and venue usage etc. Most businesses demand we pay for their services in advance and this is usually per head. Once a student and you as the parents/carer commit to taking part in an excursion you are included in the numbers used to calculate the excursion fee. It is important to realize that once this commitment is made we calculate our Excursion fee on your child attending. If your child wishes to withdraw from the excursion after indicating they intend going on the excursion, you will be required to reimburse the school for all monies which have been paid on your child’s behalf .
Privately arranged tours
Coonabarabran High School will not accept any responsibility or liability in respect of teachers or students who choose to become involved in privately arranged tours.
A privately arranged tour is one which:
- Is undertaken by students in a private capacity;
- Is arranged by an agency external to the school;
- Persons undertaking the tour do not travel under a name associated with the school (eg Coonabarabran High School Wind Ensemble);
- The tour is not endorsed, authorised or otherwise approved by the Principal.