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Ratio of adults:pupils on trips abroad

Discussion in 'School trips' started by MathJ, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. I'm taking a trip of year 7s and 8s to Paris next June. I'm currently talking to our SLT about how many staff we can take with us. Currently there are 2 non teaching staff, and 3 teaching staff going, but we're now being told that we can only have 4. (There are 40 students going)

    Just wondering how many staff other schools allow to go on their trips abroad with a similar number and age of student?

  2. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Birmingham LEA recommend (and I have the book open next to me).

    For year 7 onwards on residential visits a ration of 1 adult to 15 students. 50% of the adults should be LEA employees.

    However it then goes onto say that in circumstances where to pupils will require 24 hour supervision adquate staffing must besupplied to allow time worked and adequate rest periods for staff to be allowed.

    It also goes onto mention that more staff/adults will be required if some children have special needs that will require 1:1 supervision.

    It also says that specifically for visits abroad where you may not be able to replace staff easily account should be taken of possible staff illness or injury.

    It goes on to say that at least one adult in the party should have a basic ability to speak the local language.

    If I were organising a trip abroad for 40 pupils I would insist on at least 5 adults if all the kids were 'normal' and well behaved. If any required special supervision or had a history of poor behaviour then I would want more.

    I take 14 yr 10s to Chicago each year and take 3 adults with them. Last year we included a 15th student from a special school (EBD) and took a 4th adult along just for him! These yr 10s are all school councillors and specially selected so no problems with behaviour.
  3. v12


    I've just returned from leading an expedition of Upper Thirds (Yr8) to the Ardèche for 9 days.
    For 52 children the tour company (Acorn Adventure) allowed 7 free spaces, but in the end there were only 5 adults (all teaching staff) - a ratio of 10.4:1
    Astonishingly enough, my biggest problem was finding teachers who wanted to go on a free holiday to the south of France! Admittedly it was in the first week of our 9-week summer holiday, but even so!
    This is the third time I've run the excursion and although I'm in a rural Prep School with unbelievably well-behaved children, there is always the need to mention certain individuals in the risk assessment (citing potential over-familiarity with boys/strangers and similar 'concerns').

  4. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    The very idea that a residential school trip is a holiday for teachers! LOL I usually need a holiday when I get back from ours!
  5. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Whenever any of my children were taken on a residential we always sent in a bottle of wine for each member of staff as a small token of our thanks when they returned.
  6. v12


    As do most of the parents of children at my school!
    hic! :)))))))))))))
    And being a public school - it all comes from Waitrose!
  7. noemie

    noemie Occasional commenter

    I'd be lucky if I even got a thank you from parents! Although I was impressed this year by how many kids themselves said thank you - the drilling I did on the trips about thanking guides and drivers etc obviously paid off!
    Anyway, I get my wine from Cité Europe in Calais [​IMG]
  8. Wilden

    Wilden New commenter

    We take up to 50 Year 4s to 6s skiing in Italy each year and work on the basis of 1 adult to 6. This is a) for getting them safely through the airport, b) allowing for someone to have to stay at airport to deal with luggage going missing (just in case!) c) having a member of staff skiing with each group as well as the instructor so that they can deal with children needing the loo, minor injuries, lost gloves etc, etc. d) a non-skiing member of staff for each session who is positioned at a known meeting point who can collect up anyone tired/sore/etc e) another non-skiing member of staff back at base who is looking after anyone ill (or hopefully having a coffee and keeping the blog up to date!) f) a member of staff who can have free skiing for a morning or afternoon or just have the session off. We have never had a major injury requiring hospitalisation but these ratios would allow us to have someone accompanying them to hospital and still enough adults back at base. Personally, I would be very wary about taking 40 children with 4 adults overseas just in case something happened to one of them and you "lost" an adult for a period. I suppose it does depend on what you are proposing to do on the visit though.
  9. ianj6

    ianj6 New commenter

    Trip abroad is 1;10 ratio, in that adult count you will require 1 native speaker, 1 first aider, and 1 female if you're taking girls. The adults don't need to be teachers, but do need to be CRB'd if they're staying with the kids over night, a "99" check won't do. I'd suggest to you SLT that they let you take some LSAs, I'd steer clear of parents personnally, but if you're OK with it then there's nothing to stop you, (and they're free!)

    You need to risk assess in what will happen if an adult gets taken ill. I'd also argue strongly for 1 more than the minimum. As an example I took a trip in February leaving at 0500 on the Monday morning, and on the Sunday night I had a call that a teacher was very ill and couldn't travel. Fortunately I was still in limits to take the trip, if I'd planned to the bone, I would have had to delay the departure till I could staff up. Travel companies are always generous with their staffing and they bare little resemblance to the legal limits.

    Best off luck


    PS if you eed any help, PM me

  10. I would not take non-teaching staff on a trip unless they are looking after their own child.

    1 teacher per 10 students plus one spare for groups bigger than 30 would be a minimum. In the event of an accident and litigation I do not see how having a non teaching member of staff could be helpful unless they are the school nurse.
  11. Could you please explain to me the difference between having teaching staff and non teaching staff on a residential?
  12. v12


    My guess is that it's a case of insurance.
    Non-teaching staff are not necessarily qualified as teachers and in many schools might not be permitted to be in charge of whole classes on their own (or without a fully qualified teacher being present).
    Not that that makes them incapable of doing so, just that there might be an issue of insurance if something went wrong.
    On a [foreign] residential trip, of course, the assessment of risk would have to be bomb-proof.
  13. v12


    I'm pretty sure that QTS carries with it a certain insurance cover when in charge of groups of children which non-teaching staff wouldn't necessarily have.

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