There is a growing body of evidence that outdoor learning plays an important and enduring role in raising levels of achievement in other aspects of education and life. Wales has an outstanding natural environment and a vibrant, unique culture that creates many opportunities for inspirational outdoor learning.
Ferndale Community School offer a range of Educational Visits for all years. Over the last few year students have visited Hollywood, New York and Poland. Students have enjoyed exchange visits to Germany and France. The school runs a regular Ski Trips to the Alps as well as more local heritage sites. Every years is different and we are just as to proud explore our local Welsh environment.
Guidance for Parents
Consent Schools are not required to obtain parental consent for curriculum related activities or visits that take place wholly in normal school hours, unless the child is of nursery-age. However, where such activities will take place beyond the school gate, it would be a reasonable expectation that schools should inform parents. This might, for example, be through a school prospectus, website or policy document indicating, in a general way, that certain locations are regularly used as and when deemed appropriate by the school. Or it may be a specific notification via, for example, a newsletter, general information letter, email or text Consent is required for visits outside normal school hours and for adventure activities, and this consent may be sought either through a one-off blanket process when a child is enrolled at school, through visit-specific consent requests or through a combination of these. Parents should expect to be able to make an informed decision about whether their child should take part in an activity or visit, if it takes place outside normal school hours or involves adventure activities, and that the school will provide full information. This should also be the case for any visit organised by an establishment other than a school. Thisinformation should be in writing and, for more complex activities (such as residential visits, overseas visits, visits involving adventurous activities and visits where there will be remote supervision) it is good practice for parents to be invited to a pre-visit briefing where they can ask questions and ensure that they have a proper understanding of what they are consenting to. The information will not necessarily be provided in a single document. However, before the visit takes place, parents should feel assured that, through written communication and briefing opportunities, they have details that include:
- Dates of visit.
- Visit aims, objectives and expected learning outcomes.
- Times of departure and return.
- The location where young people will be collected and returned.
- Mode(s) of transport and name of any travel company facilitating the visit.
- Size of the group.
- Level of staff supervision and whether any remote supervision will be taking place.
- Young people’s responsibilities for their own health, safety and wellbeing.
- Accommodation details.
- Arrangements for dealing with young people who become ill.
- Arrangements for providing for special educational and medical needs, and disabilities
- Name of the Visit Leader and minimum number of accompanying staff.
- Full range of planned activities.
- Clothing and equipment requirements.
- Insurance arrangements.
- Pocket money recommendation.
- Costs and cancellation terms.
- Emergency contact details.
- Policy for the use of mobile phones and other electronic devices by the young people.
What you can expect
- To be given information about any pre-visit preparation where you need to take an active role. This would include ensuring that your child has a proper understanding of behavioural expectations as set out in any Code of Conduct (where appropriate). Both the young person and the parents need to have a clear understanding of the sanctions that might be imposed where required standards are not met.
- To be given clear information about the arrangements for sending a young person home early (when there has been serious failure to meet the required standards of behaviour), or collecting a young person before the end of a visit (when they have become ill) and how any costs will be met.
- To be asked to provide the Visit Leader with emergency contact numbers, where you, or an appropriate person, can be contacted 24/7 during the period of the visit.
- To be asked to provide information about your child that the Visit Leader, and their assistant leaders, may need in order to fulfil their responsibilities under their professional duty of care. This will include information that may be regarded as sensitive, but is nonetheless necessary. It may need to cover:
- Physical, psychological and emotional health
- Medication (including dosage and who may administer)
- Special dietary requirement