1. Policy Background

Camps, Excursion & Activities are in addition to the normal school program and therefore require careful special consideration, planning, approvals and adherence to College and Departmental policies.

An excursion is an activity organised by a school (not including work experience) during which students leave the school grounds to engage in educational activities (including camps and sport). Adventure activities are included in this definition (regardless of whether they occur outside the school grounds or not). In undertaking the planning process, staff are required to consider the following:

  • Nature of the activity & educative purpose
  • venue selection
  • Staffing and impact on the normal school program
  • safety, emergency and risk management
  • informed consent from parents
  • medical information
  • appropriate staffing and supervision
  • student preparation and behaviour
  • requirements for any adventure activities
  1. Purpose Statement

College staff are required to follow the College’s planning and approval process (which is in accordance with Departmental policy and requirements) when planning a Camp, Excursion or Activity. It is important that the guidelines outlined in the policy are closely followed in order to reduce risk, increase student engagement and ensure that there is consistency in the manner in which activities and excursion are planned and implemented.

  1. Guidelines

The planning and running of camps, excursions and activities are covered by the following DET guidelines:

College Procedures and Responsibilities

In order to follow Department guidelines and ensure that camps and excursions are well planned, it is important that College staff follow the below checklist. By doing so, we are able to maximise student safety, communication, participation and educational outcomes, whilst minimizing risk to both the College and individuals.

Initial Planning

It is important that any activity that is in addition to the normal school program is of an educational benefit and has clear links to the curriculum and College priorities. Staff need to ensure that the initial stages of planning involve discussing with colleagues both the benefits and the impacts of the planned activity. All students must be dressed in full school uniform or sports uniform. Exceptions can be made for particular activities such as adventure activities

Organising an event that repeats over multiple weeks

Typically, parent consent can only be provided for a specific event, not multiple activities at different locations and dates. A single permission form would be acceptable for multiple events in the following circumstances:

  • A PE class is visiting a particular gym every Thursday period 5&6 for the term. Teacher and transportation details remain the same
  • Year 9 organizes City Trips for the term. Parents are provided with specific details for each event, including transportation, level of supervision and nature of activities.

Staff are advised to obtain a Camps, Excursions and Activities Checklist to assist with organising and implementing.

  • Discuss at learning team meeting (what educational outcomes are planned to be achieved)
  • Discuss with Leadership team
  • Check school calendar for possible dates
  • Check venue availability (this includes the availability of College resources prior to booking)
  • Seek interest from all staff (where appropriate) to attend
  • Obtain quotes / costs
  • Check required Staff / Student ratio
  • Complete Excursion Form via Compass & submitted 3 weeks prior to excursion (4 weeks if requires parent payment or school council approval)
  • School Council and Risk Assessment templates can be found at Compass/School Documentation/ Daily Org
  • Distribute permission slips as soon as available

One Week Prior

  • Obtain Working with Children Check or VIT card from any non-Beaumaris Secondary College staff attending
  • Check payment and return slips (see accounts officer/Compass). 80% payment rate needs to be obtained 3 days prior to excursion.
  • Confirm arrangements for non-participants
  • Inform Daily Organiser of any particular staff arrangements that you have made for your normal classes on the day

Day Prior

  • All students have paid
  • Confirm Bookings
  • Complete absent teacher lessons plans on Compass
  • Collect first-aid kit (including sunscreen when needed)
  • Print / download Event Handbook via Compass
  • Check medical details on permission slips

On the day

  • Mark roll on Compass before departure
  • Ensure that arrangements have been confirmed for supervision and role marking for any students not attending activity.
  • Check student uniform (students cannot go if any issues)
  • Teachers sign out at office.
  • Inform school of any issues during the day, including ie. if running late

Finance

Refunds

Students withdrawing from camps and excursions will not automatically be entitled to a refund.

1.A full refund will be provided when:

  • There is no cost incurred by the College
  • the student’s place is filled by another student.
  • the College deems the student’s withdrawal was unavoidable eg. illness. Proof of reason for withdrawal may be requested in such circumstances.
  1. A partial refund will be provided when:
  • the College deems the students withdrawal was unavoidable but has incurred expenses relating to the withdrawal. In such cases the refund will be the full amount paid by the student, less expenses incurred by the College as a result of the withdrawal.
  1. No refund will be payable to the student withdrawing when:
  • the College deems the withdrawal was avoidable and has incurred the full costs of the excursion or camp.
  1. No student will be permitted to participate in an extra curricula camp/trip overseas:
  • where College Council materials charges are owing prior to the camp/trip taking place.

Transportation

The nature of transportation used should be included on permission slips to parents.

Charter Bus/Bus Hire: The College encourages staff members to seek quotes from different companies when booking a charter bus, particular for long trips. At least one member of staff is seated at the back of the bus to ensure supervision.

  • Nuline Bus Lines is able to provide a reduced cost when chartering a bus for during the school day.   
  • Ventura Bus Lines (Peninsula Bus Lines / Grendas): Given the depot proximity, Ventura is able to offer competitive prices for bus charter during the school day.

Public Transport: Staff must ensure that they provide details of arrival and departure times for buses or trains. If students are dismissed from the station parents are to be informed via the permission forms. Parents must be advised if students are to provide their own Myki.

Staff Vehicles: As per DET advice, staff are to avoid using their own private vehicles for transporting students wherever possible. If it is deemed necessary to transport a student in a private vehicle, then the name of the staff member driving and their vehicle registration number must be stated on the permissions slip. The vehicle must have comprehensive insurance.

Students making their own way: The degree of supervision to be provided for secondary students leaving the school during school hours to engage in educational, sport or other activities is a matter for local decision. Deciding on the level of supervision needs to balance safety with school programs where students are encouraged to undertake activities outside the school either individually or in small groups. Typically, it would be acceptable for senior students to make their own way to a local venue provided that parent permission is sought. Each excursion involving students travelling on their own will be approved on an individual basis.

Staffing

Supervision and ratios for day excursions

Day excursions are typically staffed at a ratio of 1:20. Exceptions may be made at the Principal’s discretion based on the maturity of the students and the nature of the activity. Overnight study camps, local and interstate tours can be staffed at a 1:15 ratio.

Additional Staffing

Events that require additional staff for an excursion or a camp should seek interest from all staff members (either via email or Compass). The names of all staff members who have expressed interest is to be included in the event application on Compass (under Administration Details). Administration will make staffing decisions based on:

  • Impact to educational program
  • Qualifications
  • Gender representation/balance (especially for overnight camps)

Part time staff & excursions

Part time staff who have been required to attend an excursion or a camp on a day that they are not normally required to work may negotiate arrangements with the Principal.

Healthy Eating Policy

Rationale

Research has identified a strong mind/body connection showing us that what is good for the body is good for the brain and in turn good for learning. The health benefits of a nutritious diet should not be underestimated. Consuming nutritious food and adopting a healthy lifestyle assists students to grow and develop to their optimum potential, and can lead to better concentration and consequently improved educational outcomes. A healthy diet plays a preventative role in nutrition related conditions and diseases such as obesity, dental decay, osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus (Type 2) and a range of cancers.

Parents, teachers and students must work together to support a whole school approach to building a school culture in which students actively choose nutritious food and a healthy lifestyle.

Learning about healthy eating and nutrition in the classroom is more effective when a Healthy Food Policy is promoted within the school environment and reflected in its food service policies and canteen menus.  At least 1/3 of a child’s daily food intake is consumed at school and while some students visit the canteen only occasionally, as a “treat”, a number of children rely on it every day for their food and drinks.

This policy incorporates the entire school community whilst at school, on school excursions, camps and any other school function conducted or supported by Beaumaris Secondary College.

The goals of the Healthy Eating Policy are to:

  1. Promote the value of healthy eating and long term positive nutritional habits within the school community.
  2. Ensure food sold to students is consistent with healthy eating and nutrition principles, as taught in the school curriculum and supported by national food and nutrition strategies.

Implementation

School Organisation

  • All staff will support the Beaumaris Secondary College Healthy Food Policy when organising class activities, excursions, camps and school functions.
  • The canteen will sell a variety of healthy food choices to the school community.
  • The canteen will limit the sale of high fat, high sugar and high salt foods in agreement with the canteen committee with the removal of lollies (except sugarless products) and sweetened soft drink (except mineral water) from the menu.

Curriculum

  • Explicit teaching of nutrition in the school curriculum.
  • Promotion of nutrition and healthy eating throughout the year via the school newsletter, assemblies, bulletins, parent and staff meetings and whole school activities.

Environment

  • Healthy foods and nutrition education are to be promoted within the school community via effective marketing in the canteen, across the curriculum, positive role modelling amongst staff, students and parents and dissemination of information in bulletins, newsletters etc
  • Preparation and handling of food should be conducted in an hygienic and sanitary manner according to current health regulations.

The school community will encourage students to take responsibility for their own food choices by encouraging critical thinking and evaluation of food choices.

This policy will be monitored by the Canteen subcommittee of School Council and will consist of the Principal, parents, students, staff, the canteen manageress and business manager who will meet twice each term and ensure:-

All new students and staff have been briefed on the Healthy Eating Policy

The Healthy Eating Policy is first School Council Meeting each year

  • The Healthy Eating Policy is included in the Staff Handbook
  • items sold in the canteen are in line with the policy
  • Healthy food and nutrition practices are promoted regularly
  • Nutrition Australia (or other appropriate agencies) is contacted annually to ensure that up-to-date information is maintained on healthy eating and nutrition.

Risk Assessments

Risk assessments must be completed for all camps and excursions prior to any excursion or activity that involves risk. Risk Assessments need to be provided to all staff members attending an activity prior to the activity.

Risk Assessments provided by third parties: Risk Assessments provided by companies providing an activity may be included for school council approvals to support a risk assessment produced by College staff.

Bushfire Risks

  • Principals may need to review planned excursions ahead of forecast days of significant fire risk or total fire ban days and liaise with the region about whether the excursion should be cancelled.
  • If an excursion is not cancelled, special fire safety precautions may be required, depending on the location.
  • When required, schools must follow their Emergency Management Plan and the Department’s emergency management (bushfires) procedures for off-site activities for all excursions.
  • On days determined Code Red by the Emergency Management Commissioner, all camps in the CFA fire district determined Code Red must be cancelled.

College Council Approvals

The following activities require College Council approval. The College Council meets monthly all submissions need to be provided in a timely manner for Council consideration. Speak to a member of school leadership for clarification.

1:10*

Cycling, Bushwalking, Overseas Tours, Swimming,  Snow Skiing,

1:9*

Rowing

1:8*

Surfing

1:6*

Canoeing, sailing, rafting

1:5*

Overnight Bushwaking, Surfing, Horseriding

1:3*

Sailboarding*

 

Overnight Camps

When planning a camp, provision should be made for ensuring that ratios are covered in the event that one staff member is required to take a student to hospital when camping in a remote location. Consideration must also be given for transportation issues that arise in this situation as well. Supervision must include both male and female staff for overnight camps/tours

When staying at a residential campsite emergency procedures should be explained as soon as practicable after arrival and a trial evacuation exercise should be carried out immediately to ensure that procedures are appropriate and staff and students are familiar with them.

Student Supervision

If students are to be supervised by an adult other than a Beaumaris staff member then the following must be adhered to:

  • Adult has a Working with Children’s Check
  • Parents are informed of supervision details on the consent form

Mobile Phones

In most circumstances, students will not be allowed to bring their mobile phones on overnight school camps or excursions.  The school will provide students and their parents and carers with information about items that can be brought to special activities and events, including mobile phones.

Incursions

A request for an incursion must be made by creating an ‘event’ in Compass and follows the same approval process as an excursion.

  • Consent is only required if the activity is in addition to what would be considered the normal school program AND involves risk.

Visitors supervising students on site

All visitors to the College must sign in at the general office and comply with the Child Safe standards.

Activities by foot in the local area (e.g. Wetlands)

Parent consent must be sought for any activity that involves students leaving the College grounds. ‘Indemnity forms’ is not a valid form of parental consent.

Key Responsibilities

Principal

Ultimately responsible for the Health & Safety of staff and students. Delegates oversight of approval process of extra curricula activities to one of the Assistant Principals on a yearly basis. Principal is responsible for ensuring that decision making processes are consistent with all Beaumaris Secondary College and DET policies and procedures.

Assistant Principal

  • Organises the approval process for all extra curricula activities.
  • Is responsible for approving camps, excursions and activities
  • Liaises, ideally through a weekly meeting with the daily organiser and the business manager
  • Confers with the Principal when unsure of the
  • Responsible for checking for the completion risk assessments associated with all camps, excursions & activities prior to approving activities that involve hazards, eg external camps and excursions
  • Organises list of available teachers for camps for review by leadership

Daily Organiser

  • Is responsible for organising replacement teachers and alternate timetables when classes are to be left without cover due to a camp, excursion or activity
  • Liaises with Assistant Principal to determine appropriateness of activity

Teacher organising the event

  • Completes the Camps, Excursion, Activity Checklist
  • Responsible for completing Compass excursion request, Risk Assessments, quotes and budgeting.
  • Liaises with program leaders
  • Seeks advice regarding activity from Assistant Principal, Domain leaders and Daily Organiser.
  • Communicates Risk Assessments
  • organising replacement teachers and alternate timetables when classes are to be left without cover due to a camp, excursion or activity
  • Liases with Assistant Principal to determine appropriateness of activity
  • Makes arrangements for students not participating in the activity
  • Checks bushfire risk in the days prior to departure, including the day of departure.

Teacher in Charge

  • Familiarises themselves with the Risk Assessments and activity details on Compass
  • Organises first aid kit(s) for the activity
  • Checks payment and permission details in the lead up to and on the day of the activity
  • Completes the roll for the activity prior to departure from school
  • Follows arrangements for students not participating in the activity
  • Checks bushfire risk in the days prior to departure, including the day of departure.

Teacher involved in camp, excursion or activity

  • Familiarise themselves with the Risk Assessment & activity details
  • Assist the teacher in charge with the running of the activity
  • Ensure that the roll is completed for students whom they are responsible prior to departure from school

Links

http://www.education.vic.gov.au/school/principals/spag/safety/Pages/excursions.aspx

 

 

117/136 Reserve RD Beaumaris, Victoria 3193

(03) 8569 9200

beaumaris.sc@edumail.vic.gov.au