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Co-op Academy Grange

Co-op Academy Southfield

Southfield Grange Campus

Haycliffe Lane, Bradford, BD5 9ET

Written by:

Name: Brandon Robinson - Operations Manager

Issued December 2022

Review August 2023


The Academy is committed to incorporating educational visits providing they enrich the Academy’s curriculum and experiences of our students, as well as a broad and balanced range of learning which cannot be provided on the Academy’s site alone. The visits give students first hand experience of a wide range of topics, locations, skills, activities and opportunities to learn outside the classroom. In doing this we aim to raise the achievement of all the students on the campus.

In this policy we seek to establish a clear and coherent structure for planning and evaluating educational visits, and to ensure that any risks are managed and kept to a minimum. Within these limits we seek to make our visits available to all students.

This policy is overseen by each Academy’s local governing body and must be read in conjunction with the Trust’s Educational Visits Statement, and the Academy’s External Visits Procedure documents. Staff and Governors involved in approving and organising off-site visits should be aware of, and refer to, the OEAP National Guidance website, 


The following roles are involved in managing educational visits.

Visit Leader – Manages and coordinates the preparation work required (eg writing risk assessments, arranging emergency contacts, and transport) before the trip is approved. They attend the trip and have ultimate responsibility for the safety of everybody on the visit. They submit the trip for the relevant paperwork to be overlooked and checked by the EVC.

Educational Visits Coordinator (EVC) – The EVC is Co-op Academy Grange’s Operations Manager, and in Co-op Academy Southfield, the role is undertaken by the Pathway Leaders. The EVC overlooks and checks the information and documentation in the Trip Leader’s Evolve form. When they are satisfied with the information provided, they submit the Evolve form to the Headteacher.

Headteacher – Approves all non-adventurous educational visits. This responsibility can be delegated to a Deputy Headteacher.

Regional Director – Approves all adventurous educational trips

Outdoor Education Advisor – Delivers the Trust’s EVC training. Oversees all educational visits, but gives the Regional Director, and Academies, appropriate advice when necessary.


All EVCs, the Academy’s Headteacher, and Deputy Headteacher, must have attended Co-op Academies Trust’s EVC training course, and attend a refresher course every 3 years.

The Senior Leadership Team, especially the Headteacher, and the EVC must attend the Trust’s Management of Visit Emergencies (MoVE) training course.


The Academy will attend venues such as below. This is not an exhaustive list.

Schools Universities/College Theatre Cinema Retail Outlet Theme Park Library Adventure Centre Trampoline Park Ten-Pin Bowling Lazer Zone Museum Seaside Residential Overseas Parks Church Art Gallery Private Companies


If practicable and necessary the leader in charge should make a preliminary visit so they can familiarise themselves with the venue to help plan the visit.

When planning the visit, the visit leader should consider and risk assess ‘Plan B’ alternatives (eg changes in weather conditions, vehicle breakdowns, incidents or emergencies) so they can be approved as part of the routine panning of the visit.

Permission and Approval

All external trips must first be approved by the Academy’s Headteacher or Deputy Headteacher on the appropriate visit approval form.

The trip details, and all related documentation, must be uploaded on to the Co-op Academy Trust’s Evolve software by the trip leader. The trip leader submits the visit form to the EVC.

The Headteacher has final approval of non-adventurous visits. Only when the trip leader receives an approval email from the Headteacher (via Evolve) can they be sure the visit has been approved and can proceed.

The Regional Director has final approval for adventurous, residential or overseas visits. For a full list of these activities, please see Appendix 3 of the Trust’s Educational Visits Statement.

Documents for approval by the EVC should be submitted to them within the following timescales before the trip.

CategoryLatest date for submission

to the EVC

Latest date for submission to the Headteacher / Trust

Regular curriculum, and one-off 3 weeks

2 weeks before departure

Overnight, adventurous 6 weeks

4 weeks before departure

Overseas 14 weeks

12 weeks before departure

When school is notified of a trip within the 3 weeks required to submit a one-off trip, the trip leader must get the Headteacher’s permission before starting to plan the trip.

In normal circumstances there must be no significant deviation from the plans approved without the Headteacher’s approval and a further risk assessment being completed. When this applies to non-routine visits, the changes should be discussed with the Regional Director.

Quality Badge, Licences and Provider Statement

Many organisations the academy visits do not have the Learning Outside the Classroom (LOtC) Quality Badge. In most cases, the visit leader must request that the Trust’s Provider Statement Form is completed by the venue and upload it to the visit form on Evolve. A Provider Statement is not required for visits to another educational establishment (school, college or university) when no fee is being paid, there are no adventurous activities, or residentials involved, or for local visits to a shop. The visit leader can make a judgement over whether it is appropriate to use one in those circumstances.

For organisations providing adventurous activities we do expect the organisation to have the LOtC Quality Badge, and the appropriate licence(s) for the activities they are providing. All available evidence must be uploaded to the Evolve visit form.

Parental Consent

Parents/Guardians must be fully informed about the visit in a letter from the trip leader (named), which must include:

Its nature and purpose (to include aims and objectives).

Outline the programme/itinerary making reference to issues such as working near water hazards and specific clothing requirements when necessary.

If there is any, make reference to any time which is not directly supervised.

Request the student’s medical information

Consent is not required for most activities during school hours, excluding adventurous activities, for example.

Permission for the pupils to participate in the visit must be obtained in writing from parents/guardians for visits such as, but not exclusive to, those outside school hours, adventurous activities, residentials (including camping and in-school sleepovers), and overseas visits.

Permission can be received over the telephone in urgent circumstances, but this must be a last resort, and with proper planning will not be needed. The trip leader must record who they spoke to, the date, and time. Relevant information must be shared with staff and students about the trip.

University Visits

Following consultation with Co-op Acadamies Trust officers (CEO & Regional Directors) in response to advice, the Trust recommends Academies approach these visits as explained in Appendix 1

Free School Meals

Students eligible for free school meals will be provided with a lunch if requested by the trip leader. Other students can also request a lunch via the visit leader, but the cost of a standard meal will be charged to their account.

Financing Visits

There is usually a cost associated with running a visit. Examples are, entry in to the location, coach, fuel for the Academy’s minibuses, staffing cover, etc. Finance details should be shown on the Visit Approval Form, and signed by the budget holder.

If students are required to contribute or finance their own visit, the visit leader must discuss with the Finance department how money should be collected from families. This will ensure that an appropriate process is followed and money is properly receipted and accounted for. 


Staffing & DBS Checks

All external visits must be accompanied by at least two members of the Academy’s staff. Some trips may be exempt from this if agreed by the Headteacher. The staffing gender supervision must match the student gender attendees, ie if there are students of both sexes then a male and female member of staff must supervise them during the trip. 

Staffing ratio must conform to National Guidance and be appropriate for the students participating on the trip and the location, which should be considered in the risk assessment. 

Individual support must be identified for students with special educational needs and the appropriate risk assessment put in place.

It is the trip organiser's responsibility to ensure all safeguarding checks have been undertaken for individuals involved in organising, taking part or attending the off-site visit. All employees of the Trust have enhanced DBS checks in place. All adults accompanying a residential visit must be DBS checked to an enhanced level. 

First Aid Provision

The Academy must provide a trained first aider (either 1-day Emergency First Aid, or fully qualified) on the visit. That person is allowed to administer first aid if required.


Academy staff driving students on a visit in the Academy’s minibus must have passed a driving assessment and have a relevant valid MIDAS certificate. 

A coach company must be reputable, listed in the visits procedure document, and have provided a statement to the Academy that all their drivers have an Enhanced DBS certificate. The trip leader must check the driver’s company ID badge before commencing with the visit. 

Public transport can be used, but this must be rigorously risk assessed and planned. 

Emergencies & Incidents on the Visit

If an accident or incident occurs during the visit, it must be recorded using the Academy’s usual accident recording procedure. Serious incidents must be reported to the Chair of Governors and Regional Director via the Headteacher as soon as practicable, but ideally within 24 hours.

In an emergency, the trip leader must follow previously agreed emergency protocols, such as contacting their emergency staff contact who would use the Emergency Activation Form to gather important information about the emergency, the group’s location, etc.

The visit leader should familiarise themselves with on-site first aid procedures and facilities, and fire escape routes.

Contact With School / Parents

The leader in charge must keep contact with their emergency staff contact listed on their risk assessment, when required. Contact is made on residential visits daily.

Staff should obtain the parents’ contact details, so they can contact them in an emergency, and for purposes of gaining permission in urgent circumstances (see Permission and Approval above).


The Trust’s policy covers all activities routinely offered by schools. Refer to section 10 in the Trust’s Educational Visits Statement document for more information.

The Provider Statement completed by the venue being visited should normally show their public liability insurance’s indemnity value is a minimum of £5m.


Reviewing the Visit

The visit leader should review their visit using the form in Evolve, in the Evaluate tab. This is so the Academy can evaluate if the planning has worked, and to learn from any incidents that may have taken place.

Record Keeping

All visit information should be kept for a minimum of 6 years. However, information relating to an incident that took place on the visit, such as an accident involving staff/student, that might result in legal action should be kept indefinitely.

Appendix 1 

The below message is from Dave Faulonbridge on Evolve on 2nd March 2022, relating to trips to universities. 

“Following consultation with CAT officers in response to advice, this is the approach we recommend schools take to these visits:

Day visits

These are normally accompanied by school staff – where this is the case the visit should be treated as a ‘normal’ school educational visit: the planning should be recorded on Evolve, parental consent should be in place, any charges should be consistent with legal, Trust and school requirements. Pupils should be recorded as present.

Residential visits (accompanied)

If the pupils are accompanied by school staff, the visit should be dealt with as above.

Unaccompanied university visits

In practice is very difficult to carry out robust checks on third party provision of this type, and National Guidance states: “Non-Delegable Duty of Care

In October 2013 the UK Supreme Court ruled that, in particular circumstances, organisations have a non-delegable duty of care. These circumstances include where a school or similar establishment delegates supervision and control of a child in its care to a third party. The ruling means that, in these circumstances, an organisation could be held liable for the negligence of the third party, in an exception to the normal fault-based principles of law. Although the organisation may delegate supervision and control, it cannot delegate its duty of care. It is not merely required to ‘take reasonable care’ of those in its charge, but to ‘ensure that reasonable care is taken’.”

On normal educational visits school staff are present to take responsibility for pastoral care – even if external providers are responsible for leading specialist activities. In the absence of this control measure rigorous checks, backed up by monitoring, are required to evidence ‘that reasonable care’ has been taken. As this is likely to be impractical with university visits the recommended arrangements are outlined below.

Summer holiday opportunities

In some cases, schools are ‘signposting’ residential opportunities at universities during the school holidays. In these cases, it is clearest if schools emphasise the school is not providing, leading or endorsing the residential – it is up to the parent / guardian to make a judgement about the suitability of the opportunity. The provider communicates directly with the Parent / Guardian to coordinate arrangements. Transport arrangements are the responsibility of the parents. Activities of this type would not be on Evolve and the school is not responsible for them.

Unaccompanied visits in school time

Because of the issues related to ‘non-delegable duty of care’ and the practical difficulty of vetting unknown staff and activities outwith our control, it is clearest if schools signpost the opportunities but emphasise that the school is not responsible for them. Decisions on suitability should be left with parents. It should be clearly stated it is not a school trip. Parents should be told that pupils will be granted leave of absence for the duration of the visit. These activities would not be recorded on Evolve. Costs would be met by parents.

Grey areas

Hybrid arrangements can lead to a number of grey areas. For example, in some cases schools offer to support pupils by providing transport to residential university experiences that are then not accompanied by school staff. This can give parents the impression it is a school visit (with all of the usual expectations around supervision, risk assessment and liability). It may be clearer to offer parents ‘grant support’ to enable them to pay for public transport. If transport is to be provided, the wording of letters to parents must make clear that whilst the school will be responsible for the planning and supervision of the journey, parents must decide whether the opportunity offered by the university is suitable for their child and make their own decision about the third-party arrangements. Pupils will be given leave of absence for any days they spend at the university (but will be marked present for the journey if it is during the school day). Planning for the transport arrangements and supervision will be recorded on Evolve.”