SAFETY PLAN FOR TRIPS
When planning trips, consider the following
- Do not allow any group to leave the school with fewer than two adult chaperones, one of whom is certified in First Aid.
- If a high-risk trip is planned, the teacher must possess or be accompanied by someone who possesses a current certificate in RTE (Responding to Emergencies) First Aid, or its equivalent, and CPR for the Professional Rescuer, or its equivalent.
- Maintain the recommended 1:5 Teacher to Student Ratios for trips, for all ages, unless venue recommends a smaller ratio.
- Make sure all chaperones have a list of students they are in charge of and all emergency contact information.
Prepare your students for the trip
- All students should wear ID tags or t-shirts with name, address and telephone number of the school.
- The lost child plan and safety procedures should be reviewed with teachers, chaperones and students. Create a plan for finding a missing student. Instruct children what to do if they become separated from the group. For example: Proceed to a designated location, or proceed to the nearest person in authority (spell out who that person is – ex. a police officer).
- A Buddy System and the accountability system should be established, where each student is assigned a buddy with whom he or she is to remain throughout the trip. Tell students to immediately tell the teacher if their buddy is missing.
- Take a copy of the emergency contact information for each student. You need to be able to contact parents in case of an emergency. Also remember that no child can attend a trip without a written consent from the parent.
Upon arrival at destination
- Designate a meeting place.
- During the trip, the Teacher should make buddy checks periodically. Activate the Buddy System after each activity, while traveling through streets, on subways and buses, or whenever potential problems concerning accountability for the presence of each child may arise.
- All incidents and delays should be reported to the principal immediately.
- Make sure you have a list of students with food allergies so every staff member on the trip is aware of the situation.
- If planned in advance, many attractions will allow a school group to bring in food for students with food allergies or arrange for a special meal.
- Ask which food concessions have peanut free, gluten free or kosher food. See if they have a list of ingredients of food offered at various concessions, which many times the concession staff may not be aware of.