Make School Trips Easy

How many of you teachers have had the dreaded moment where you end up being responsible for planning a school trip?

School trips may be enriching and exciting, but the workload is enormous and can be very stressful. You should, of course, take it as a compliment that you can be trusted to take such a big responsibility, so in this guide, we will share some insights that will help you cope.

Top Tips for Planning the Perfect School Trip

1. Streamline your School Trip Planning

Most schools will have a policy and guidelines for school trips, which is an excellent place to start.

Make a list based on the school procedures to work through without missing any steps. Including some deadlines is vital as there is nothing worse than being too late to book the coach or secure insurance.

Sharing the load can make the planning process more manageable. Phone calls and responding to emails can become quite time-consuming, especially when juggling them with the rest of your workload. Ask a colleague to take on some of the tasks and include them in the decision-making process.

Senior colleagues are a good source of information. Let them share their experiences to help you avoid making mistakes. They will help you feel more confident.

You may be able to outsource the trip organisation with a team like Diversity Study Trips. They can help organise a trip for a small set of students or a wider group. One advantage is that they can bring new ideas and inject innovation to make any excursion more meaningful.

Remember to keep in mind the purpose of your trip. It will all be worth it when you see students benefit from the growth and experience.

2. Consider Cost

It is vital to consider the impact of cost on your students and their families. Inflation has meant that the cost of coach hire and insurance has rocketed, so even if entrance fees are low, the overall cost to parents can be high. The cost-benefit ratio must be a priority, and you may need to shelve expensive plans for a simpler idea.

Some lucky schools have an active parent association which raises funds to subsidise school trips. If not, you could consider a fundraiser yourself to help.

Discovering your ideas are not within a reasonable budget can be daunting. Be inventive and look for more economical solutions, and don’t be afraid to ask providers for discounts.

One thing to understand is that your trip may be one of many. Coordinate with other departments to ensure you are aligned and not doubling up. Departments may benefit from more significant discounts if they work together on one trip, such as a theatre trip for English and drama students.

3. Safeguarding a top priority

Safeguarding should be at the top of the list when planning trips, so ensure you know what is expected. Indeed, safeguarding, endless risk assessments and constant headcounts are some of the most daunting aspects of school trips.

Engage a colleague to check over your safeguarding planning. Check school policies and speak to the designated safeguarding lead for advice.

The key is preparation. Providing you have planned well, you will know exactly what to do in any situation. Although you cannot predict all events, you just need a clear plan of action to invoke.

Remember to communicate with colleagues supervising the trip and assign responsibilities.

The first time you plan a trip will no doubt be the hardest. Try not to panic! Get support, and you will give students a fantastic opportunity to try out a new experience and expand their horizons.

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