In French and German schools the beer and wine flows freely on parents' evening. In some Swiss schools there are beer machines in the staffroom. In most European countries over 16s can drink wine and beer and Frenchies drink wine at any age in my experience. However, in Britain the slightest accident-alcohol or not on the part of a teacher- is a huge risk and big reason why many teachers will not organise school trips. Yes, drinking on school trips for the majority of pupils is merely a question of school rules and not the law but in the current climate of sue anything that moves and so I think any member of staff drinking on a trip is a risk and any student caught drinking on a trip should be sent home ASAP whatever age they are parental permission or not.