INTRODUCTION

Providence Christian College seeks to inculcate in its students a servant-hearted outlook on life. As Christians we are reminded that Jesus summarized the Ten Commandments into two commandments: Matthew 22: 37 – 40: 37Jesus replied: ” Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself. 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Through its Missions and Service programmes, Providence Christian College seeks to provide our students with rich opportunities to ‘love our neighbours.’

The following policy has been established to ensure the safety of Overseas Excursions and Mission Teams travelling on Short-term mission trips both within Australia and Internationally. This policy should be read in Conjunction with the Providence Christian College Excursion Policy and Critical Incident Policy.

DEFINITIONS

The following terms have the following meanings in this policy:

  • Overseas excursion is a trip involving students travelling outside Australia, under the direction of teachers, as an organized activity of the College. It includes travel directly related to the formal curriculum of the College as well as other trips, including ‘mission trips’ undertaken as part of the broader education program of the College. An overseas excursion is not predominately recreational and is intended to provide outcomes for students consistent with the vision and mission of the College.
  • Team Leader refers to the teacher nominated by the principal to organise the excursion and to have ultimate responsibility and therefore authority while the activity is in progress.
  • Leadership Team Representative refers to a designated member of the College Leadership Team who is expected to accompany any tour, be it national or international, as part of the College’s Duty-of-Care responsibilities.
  • Parent(s) is inclusive of those with parental responsibility and guardians.
  • Informed consent means that parents support their child participating in an activity after they have been made aware of the details of the activity and the risks and associated costs involved.
  • Accompanying adults include teachers, College administrative staff, activity leaders and community members known to the College and involved in the overseas excursion.

PRE-PLANNING

The College will consider the following before developing a proposal for an overseas excursion:

  • age, maturity and ability of students involved (see Eligibility)
  • safety and welfare of students
  • major learning outcomes and relevance to the curriculum or broader aims of the College
  • special responsibilities of staff
  • international protocols
  • possible difficulties and challenges
  • basic emergency and contact arrangements
  • cost, as parents must be informed of the nature of overseas excursions planned and advised that additional expenses may be involved.
  • level of risk attached to traveling to, and through, the proposed destination country.

APPROVAL PROCESS

Timeline for Approval

To ensure that adequate time has been provided for planning and preparation of an overseas excursion the following timeline has been adopted:

Deadline

Requirement

At least twelve months prior to date of departure

[Note: at least six months prior is the absolute minimum that would be considered prudent in most cases]

Initial Application for Approval of Overseas Excursion form and the relevant attachments lodged with the Principal. The Application must include:

  • A completed application form.
  • Proposed itinerary, accommodation and costing details.
  • Emergency contacts & safety procedures.
  • Preliminary Risk assessment.
  • Draft details to be sent to parents and students.
  • Draft Medical information and consent form
  • Draft Parent consent form.
  • Draft Emergency plan.

At least three months/ prior to date of departure

[Note: at least three month prior is recommended with four weeks being the minimum that would be considered prudent in most cases]

The application form must be re-submitted with any amendments to names, travel details etc. A statement from the Team Leader that all consent, medical information emergency contact details and copies of travel insurance details have been received copied and filed from all participants must also be submitted.

Week before departure

Final review and update of all details, including risk assessments and emergency plans.

Responsibilities of Team Leader

The Team Leader must ensure that:

  • All participating teaching staff know and adhere to the requirements of this Policy and other relevant policies, supervision requirements and safety procedures.
  • All accompanying adults are appropriately qualified and/or experienced, are advised of their responsibilities, relevant College policies and safety procedures and undergo appropriate child protection screen checks.
  • Staff and accompanying adults act with due care to carry out their duties and are made aware that they must act in a manner consistent with the ethos and values of the College and in accordance with the usual College requirements for staff.
  • Informed consent is obtained by ensuring that passport, parental information, signed child protection forms, emergency contact details, medical and consent forms are duly processed, and copies held at the College and by the Team Leader during travel.
  • Prior to departure, students and accompanying adults are fully instructed on matters such as:
  • documentation and vaccination requirements
  • cultural differences in country/countries to be visited
  • possible impact of these cultural differences
  • expected code of behaviour
  • security precautions
  • appropriate clothing and accessories.

Responsibilities of Principal

The Principal will ensure that:

  • College Board endorsement is received.
  • The following information is provided to the College with the excursion application form:
  • The major learning outcomes and relevance to the curriculum.
  • Number and year levels of students.
  • Number of accompanying staff and other adults.
  • Risk assessment for the excursion.
  • Copies of information to parents including medical form, consent form, proposed itinerary, accommodation arrangements and costing.
  • Contact is made regularly with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade regarding any travel warnings to the intended destinations.
  • All requirements for planning are met.
  • All participants have been advised to ensure adequate medical insurance.
  • All participants have been advised to ensure adequate travel insurance.
  • An adequate number of accompanying adults hold relevant first aid qualifications and an appropriate first aid kit is carried with the excursion group.
  • All participating teaching staff know and adhere to the requirements of the College’s Overseas Excursions Policy and other relevant policies, supervision requirements, child protection protocols and safety procedures.
  • Staff and accompanying adults act with due care to carry out their duties and are made aware that they must act in a manner consistent with the ethos and values of the College and in accordance with the usual College requirements for staff.
  • All teaching staff are aware that if they arrange activities within an overseas excursion without ensuring relevant policies are followed, they could be individually liable in the event of an accident. Staff must be advised that they may not be covered by workers compensation if they are injured while involved in an excursion activity which has not been given official approval prior to the departure of the excursion group.
  • The College has copies of all emergency contacts and procedures.
  • Where students are to be billeted, the families agree to this and have contact details for the host families. For the duration of the home stay, students must have the telephone contact details of the supervising teacher who must be contactable at all times.

Supervision Requirements

The College will ensure that appropriate supervision is provided taking into account the specific requirements of the overseas excursion. Without limiting this, the following minimum supervision ratios have been adopted:

  • For all overseas excursions there must be at least two teachers.
  • For groups over 20 students, a supervisory ratio of one teacher to ten students is required in developed countries and one teacher to five students in undeveloped countries.
  • A member of the Leadership Team must accompany any national or international tour.
  • For mixed groups of boys and girls a male and a female teacher must accompany the group.
  • For groups of either all boys or all girls there must be at least one teacher of the same gender as the students.

Accompanying adults may be used to meet supervision requirements provided that the Principal is satisfied there are sufficient teachers to maintain adequate control of the whole excursion, and to control each activity. Additional adults should accompany excursions when extra care is considered necessary for the safety and welfare of students. Teachers must comprise at least half of the supervisory complement. The Team Leader should ensure that the parents and students are made aware of supervision arrangements. Age, maturity and gender of the students must be considered. REsponsibility for, and control of, the excursion remains with the Team Leader at all times.

Accompanying adults

All accompanying adults MUST undergo appropriate child protection screen checks. The Principal and the Team Leader are to ensure that all accompanying adults are appropriately screened, qualified and/or experienced and are advised of their responsibilities and relevant College policies and safety procedures prior to departure. This must be appropriately documented.

The Team Leader is to ensure that accompanying adults act with due care and in good faith in assisting teachers to carry out their duty of care.

RISK MANAGEMENT

Preparation of Risk Assessment

A detailed risk assessment must be prepared for overseas excursions as part of the approval process. The initial risk assessment will be completed at least six months prior to the date of the excursion and updated three months prior to departure. Significant changes to circumstances up to the date of departure may require a further review of the risk assessment. The preparation of a risk assessment does not, of course, negate the need for adequate supervision and the use of professional judgement during the course of the excursion.

The Team Leader will undertake a systematic process to identify risks that need to be managed for a particular excursion. This process should include:

  • Undertaking a site visit to the proposed locations to be visited as part of the excursion (if possible);
  • Review of documentation and materials from any previous excursion to the area;
  • Liaison with hosts and other contacts in the areas to be visited;
  • Discussion with contacts within the College community who have recent experience travelling to the locations to be visited;
  • Review of the processes of other Colleges who may have visited the area recently;
  • Discussions with travel agents and tour operators;
  • Detailed review of travel advice from relevant government agencies in relation to travel to the areas to be visited including:
  • Once the applicable risks are identified the Team Leader will assess the risks identified. This assessment process involves a consideration of both:
  • the likelihood of the event occurring; and
  • the impact of the identified risk on the College, if it occurred.
  • The likelihood and impact factors are then combined to determine the overall risk.
  • Beginning with high priority risks, the Team Leader then considers existing risk control procedures against the overall level of risk, both from the perspective of the expected effect of the control on the likelihood and on the impact of the risk. This process will determine the level of residual risk. If the level of residual risk is acceptable, no further action need be taken.
  • If the evaluation of existing risk control procedures lead to a resultant residual risk that is unacceptable to the College further action is required to reduce, monitor or control the level of risk to an acceptable level. This action can include a combination of:
  • strengthening of existing controls surrounding this risk;
  • additional new controls in relation to this risk;
  • arrangement of additional insurance covers to compliment other control mechanisms; and
  • consideration of whether risk can or should be avoided if other control mechanisms can not adequately address the risk.
  • This is an iterative process which continues until the level of residual risk is acceptable to the College. Each risk may have one or more controls applied to it. Control mechanisms are set out for each identified risk in the risk assessment form.

Standard Risk Control Policies

  • In undertaking a risk assessment for an overseas excursion the Team Leader must ensure that the following are adhered to:
  • General Safety Level of Areas being visited
  • Be alert to your own security
  • Exercise caution and monitor developments that might affect your safety
  • Exercise a high degree of caution
  • Reconsider your need to travel
  • Advised not to travel
  • Overseas Excursions will not be undertaken in areas subject to a travel advisory prior to departure of ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Advised not to travel’.

General Airline Safety Level

  • While Australia has an excellent airline safety record and airline travel generally is arguably a safe form of transport there are commonly held concerns about the uniformity of standards of airline safety and maintenance. As a result of these concerns both the United States and the European Union have undertaken assessments of countries and airlines respectively that service routes within their airspace. These assessments have led to a list of airlines banned from operating within the European Union (see listing here: http://ec.europa.eu/transport/air-ban/list_en.htm) and an assessment of the ability of countries with airlines services the United States to adhere to international standards and recommended practices for aircraft operations and maintenance (see listing and details here – http://www.faa.gov/safety/programs_initiatives/oversight/iasa/).
  • While noting that these assessments do not cover all airlines operating internationally the College has determined that it will not travel on airlines banned from operation in the European Union or from those countries assessed as not meeting recommended practices for aircraft operations and maintenance standards by the U.S. Federal Aviation Authority. Wherever possible preference will be give to airlines operating flights directly into Australia, the European Union or the United States on the basis that these airlines would be required to meet the aviation standards of those countries.

Emergency Communication

  • In the event of an emergency it may be necessary for those on the excursion to have ready access to communication to Australia. At a minimum the number of supervisory staff required under Section 5 above must each have a mobile phone. Where the destination for the excursion does not have reliable or compatible mobile phone coverage a satellite phone will be provided for each separate group that may arise during the course of the excursion e.g. if some students will be at one site undertaking activities and another group travels to a different site each must have emergency contact facilities. The costs associated with the provision of sufficient satellite phones, if required, must be costed into the budget for the excursion.
  • Emergency contact numbers for each member of the party, the applicable local consular details and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade must be stored with each applicable mobile phone.
  • The travel plans for the group will also be registered with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Provision for emergency medical treatment and evacuation

  • In many developing countries medical facilities, particularly outside capital cities, will be extremely limited. Many medical emergencies, possibly including all situations that require surgery, may require evacuation either to the capital city, a more developed regional country or even return to Australia.
  • The Team Leader must make investigations into the availability of local medical facilities and the scope of their coverage as well as the possible alternatives available should a medical evacuation be required.
  • Overseas Excursions will not be undertaken in areas where appropriate provisions cannot be made for emergency medical treatment and/or evacuation.

Accidents

In general terms the College’s usual procedures should be followed as far as possible in the event of an accident. In serious cases where medical attention is obviously necessary the Team Leader should send for an ambulance or a doctor whichever is appropriate, or arrange transport to the nearest or most convenient medical facility. The choices stipulated by the parent on the medical information form should be respected where possible.

A staff member in the party must have a recognised current first aid certificate and an appropriate first aid kit is to be carried on the excursion.

An emergency plan must be developed as part of the risk assessment process. These should incorporate emergency contacts and procedures for illness, accident and hospitalisation for the overseas excursion.

Copies of emergency contacts and procedures must be taken on the trip. A copy must be left with the Principal.

Insurance

All participants are required to have adequate travel insurance. All participants need to be informed that the College does not automatically accept liability for additional costs which may arise from any contingency.

Staff are afforded the College’s protection under the principle of vicarious liability (i.e. where an employer bears the cost of damages resulting from an employee’s negligence) when on duty and following College policy during College organised activities. Staff of the College are covered by Worker’s Compensation if on duty at the time of an accident. All staff undertaking College excursions approved by the principal are deemed to be on duty.

Staff need to be aware that if they arrange activities within an overseas excursion without ensuring relevant College policies are followed, they could be individually liable in the event of an accident. In such circumstances staff may not be afforded the College’s protection under the principle of vicarious liability i.e. where an employer bears the costs of damages resulting from an employee’s negligence. Similarly, staff may not be covered by worker’s compensation if they are injured while involved in an excursion activity that does not have the official approval of the Principal.

Parents must be advised that adequate travel insurance is required for students. The College does not carry any insurance for injury, disease or illness to students resulting from College activities or College organised excursions. The College would have to be proven negligent before compensation was paid should a student sustain an injury during a College organised activity. This insurance might cover contingencies such as medical/hospital expenses, ambulance transport, cancellation of transport/ accommodation, or loss of/damage to luggage.

Accompanying adults are required to take out their own travel insurance.

EVALUATION OF EXCURSIONS

Within one month of the return from an overseas excursion a formal evaluation will be undertaken by the College. This will include all aspects of the program and process.

Feedback should be sought from students, staff, parents, the host College or organisation (if applicable) and any significant service providers.

The evaluation will include an assessment of the achievement of the outcomes of the excursion.

Participants and parents will be provided with an opportunity to engage in a formal debrief and/or provide written feedback as part of the evaluation process.

BOARD APPROVAL

This Overseas Excursion Policy has been approved by the Board of Directors.

MISSION TRIPS –

ELIGIBILITY for Mission Trips:

  • Opportunities for students to participate in Overseas Mission trips will be offered in the first instance to students in good standing in Year 11 at Providence. Sound academic progress and a good behaviour record should be evident.
  • If there are insufficient applications from Year 11 students the opportunity will be presented to Year 10 and Year 12 students. (As the College recognises the academic importance and load on students in Year 12, Year 12 students will only be included in exceptional circumstances.)
  • Year 9 students may be offered a position on the team if sufficient members cannot be found in the more senior year groups.

The majority of participants will be students who have developed a strong Christian faith. However places may be made available for students who do not have an active faith in Christ but who the Mission Committee believe would benefit from exposure to the mission field.

FUNDING:

Since the mission budget is limited, and the needs are so great, participants are encouraged to fund their trips by raising support from friends, family and personal funds.

Occasionally a participant may not be able to raise enough funds and will not have sufficient personal funds to pay for the trip. In such cases, the Mission Committee will consider giving financial assistance based on the following guidelines:

  • The participant must be a student in good standing at Providence Christian College.
  • The participant must recruit a prayer team of at least 3 people who agree to pray for the participant every day during the trip.
  • The participant must complete and submit all required paperwork and ensure that all medical requirements have been fulfilled. (vaccines, innoculations etc.)
  • The participant must have sent out at least 20 letters to friends and family requesting financial assistance. The participant must also have completed telephone follow-up with these people. A list of the letter recipients must be available if requested by the committee.

ANNEXURE A

PLANNING CHECKLIST

Pre-planning

Develop proposal for overseas excursion, taking note of the considerations in the policy. The proposal for travelling overseas must be approved by the Principal/school board.

Six/four months prior to the excursion

Submit the proposal to the Principal.

The application for approval of overseas excursion must contain the following completed attachments in order to gain approval.

Document

Attached
Yes/No

Application for Approval of Overseas Excursion

Yes/No

Overseas Excursion Information for Parents- Sample letter to parents with excursion details

Yes/No

Overseas Excursion Information for Parents- Sample consent form to parents

Yes/No

Overseas Excursion Information for Parents- Sample letter to parents for medical information

Yes/No

Medical Information and Consent Form

Yes/No

Risk Assessment Proforma

Yes/No

Emergency Plan

Yes/No

Immunisation Requirements and DFAT Contact

Yes/No

A statement with the breakdown of costings for the excursion

Yes/No

A statement that Child Protection Checks are underway (if required)

Yes/No

Three months/four weeks prior to the excursion

If there are changes to any of the documents listed above, re-submit the relevant documents.

Final approval documentation required:

Document

Attached
Yes/No

Signed application form (re-submitted)

Yes/No

Changes to the original application (if any)

Yes/No

Emergency plan

Yes/No

DFAT travel advice

Yes/No

Statement from the Team Leader that medical and excursion consent forms have been received

Yes/No

List of students going on the excursion

Yes/No

Week prior to the excursion

Review and update if necessary the following documentation:

Document

Completed
Yes/No

Risk Assessment

Yes/No

Emergency plan

Yes/No

DFAT travel advice

Yes/No

After the excursion

Document

Completed
Yes/No

Evaluation of excursion and achievement of outcomes

Yes/No

Feedback sought from participants, parents etc

Yes/No

Formal debriefing undertaken

Yes/No

ANNEXURE B

RISK ASSESSMENT MATRIX

Likelihood Assessment Table

When assessing the likelihood of an event the following table will be used:

LevelDescriptorDescriptionIndicative Frequency
AAlmost certainThe event will occur on an annual basisOnce a year or more frequently
BLikelyThe event has occurred several times or more in your careerOnce every three years
CPossibleThe event might occur once in your careerOnce every ten years
DUnlikelyThe event does occur somewhere from time to timeOnce every thirty years
ERareHeard of something like this occurring elsewhereOnce every 100 years
FVery rareHave never heard of this happeningOne in 1,000 years
GAlmost incredibleTheoretically possible but not expected to occurOne in 10,000 years

Consequences Assessment Table

In identifying the impact of a potential risk the following table outlines the various categories used by the School:

LevelDescriptorPeopleReputationBusiness Process & SystemsFinancial
1ExtremeDeath or multiple life threatening injuries.Government inquiry or Commission of inquiry or adverse national media.Critical system failure, bad policy advice or ongoing non-compliance. Business severely affected.>25% of Budget
or >$5M
2Very HighLife threatening injury or multiple serious injuries causing hospitalisation.Intense public, political and media scrutiny. External departmental review or inquest etc
Eg: front page headlines, TV.
Strategies not consistent with School’s vision. Trends show service is degraded.> 10% of Budget
or <$5M
3MediumSerious injury causing hospitalisation or multiple medical treatment cases.Administrative scrutiny required by external body.One or more key accountability requirements not met but continued funding not in jeopardy.> 5% of Budget
or <$500K
4LowMinor injury or First Aid Treatment Case.Scrutiny required by internal committees or internal audit to prevent escalation.Policy procedural rule occasionally not met or services do not fully meet needs.2.5% of Budget
or <$50K
5NegligibleInjuries or ailments not requiring medical treatment.Internal ReviewMinor errors in systems or processes requiring corrective action, or minor delay without impact on overall schedule.1% of Budget
or <$5K

Priority Risk Matrix

Once the likelihood and impact are categorised using the tables above the overall priority is determined using the following matrix:

Consequences
Likelihood

Negligible

5

Low

4

Medium

3

Very High

2

Extreme

1

A (almost certain)HHEEE
B (likely)MHHEE
C (possible)LMHEE
D (unlikely)LLMHE
E (rare)LLMHH

Risk Control Procedures

Once the overall priority is determined using the above matrix the following risk control procedures must be taken. High or Extreme risks must be reported to Leadership and require detailed treatment plans to reduce the residual risk to Low or Medium.

PriorityDescriptorRisk Control Procedures to be established
Eextreme riskimmediate detailed action plan required
Hhigh riskLeadership attention needed
Mmoderate riskmanagement responsibility must be specified
Llow riskmanage by routine procedures

ANNEXURE D

APPLICATION FOR APPROVAL OF OVERSEAS EXCURSIONS – SECTION 1

COPIES OF ALL CORRESPONDENCE TO PARENTS AND STUDENTS MUST BE ATTACHED

Checklist

This application must:

  • be completed with reference to the Overseas Excursions Policy ◻
  • have copies of all correspondence to parents and students attached ◻
  • be lodged with the Principal at least SIX MONTHS prior to the proposed excursion ◻

 

Destination

 

Dates

___/___/___ to

 

___/___/___

Educational activities/major outcomes & relevance to the vision and mission of the School

 

Details of proposed students involved

Year Level

Male

Female

   
   
   

Approximate Cost of Excursion Per Student:

$

Details of proposed adults involved (mark Team Leader with *)

Teachers

Name

Gender

First Aid Qualified?

   
   
   

Other Accompanying Adults

Name

Gender

First Aid Qualified?

   
   
   
APPLICATION FOR APPROVAL OF OVERSEAS EXCURSIONS – SECTION 2

This application (section 1 and section 2) must be re-submitted to the Principal with final details i.e. any changes to the initial application plus emergency plans for illness, accident and hospitalisation, at least THREE MONTHS/FOUR WEEKS prior to departure.

The documents listed below are also required to be attached to the re-submitted application.

Emergency plan (revised if necessary) ◻

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade current travel advice ◻

Risk Assessment (revised if necessary) ◻

Statement from Team Leader that medical information and parent consent

forms have been received from all students attending ◻

Principal’s signature: …………………….…………………………… Date: …………

ANNEXURE E

TEMPLATE LETTER TO PARENTS WITH EXCURSION DETAILS

Please fill in details below as appropriate and delete when done.

Dear Parent/Guardian

The following details relate to an overseas excursion to [insert destination] which is being organised for students in [name the year (s) or group].

Include the following details:

  • Destination
  • times and dates of departure and return
  • excursion outline
  • mode of travel and route, including supervision available
  • Itinerary
  • purpose of the excursion including planned outcomes for students and relevance to the curriculum
  • nature of activities to be undertaken during the excursion
  • accommodation arrangements
  • name of the Team Leader
  • names of other teacher/leader/s, and accompanying adults
  • vaccinations (if required) – parents should be advised to seek advice from a medical practitioner as soon as possible and at least six weeks before departure.
  • equipment and clothing needed
  • food requirements
  • Anticipated expenses
  • details of cost including refundable and non-refundable monies
  • special rules applicable to the excursion
  • procedures for dealing with unacceptable behaviour. These procedures should include the possibility of exclusion and return home of students
  • means of contact with the group
  • emergency contacts and procedures in the event of a critical incident

The following standard paragraphs may be included:

Immunisation Requirements

The School has contacted a medical practitioner who advise that the immunisation requirements for (insert destination) are (insert details, if none write none).

Parents have been advised to seek advice from a medical practitioner in relation to the particular requirements for your child as soon as possible and at least six weeks before departure.

Australian Government Travel Advice

The DFAT website has the current travel advice from the Australian Government, this is found at: http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/.

To see the advice for (insert destination) select (insert destination) from the alphabetical list. The site also contains a wide range of general travel advice and information.

Contact was made with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to obtain details of the current travel advice relating to the country that the school intends to visit on (insert date), travel advice for (insert destination) states:

“ Insert travel advice”

The School’s policy is that travel will not be undertaken in areas subject to a travel advisory prior to departure of ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Advised not to travel’. This may result in a last minute cancellation of the excursion and the loss of deposits or other expenses which may or may not be recoverable under your personal travel insurance. We trust that you will understand that this policy is designed to protect the safety of the students involved in the excursion.

“Staff accompanying students on overseas excursions will take all reasonable care while the students are in their charge to protect them from injury and to control and supervise their behaviour and activities.

Parents should be aware that staff members are not responsible for injuries or damage to property which may occur on an excursion where, in all circumstances, staff have not been negligent. Parents should warn children of the risk to themselves, to others and to property, of impulsive, wilful or disobedient behaviour.”

The school has made every effort to keep costs for this activity at a reasonable level. If however there is insufficient total funding available to meet the cost of the excursion, regrettably we may not be able to proceed.”

Parents are advised that travel insurance is mandatory for all participants.

Attach and request that the Medical Information and Consent Form be completed.

Where swimming/water activities are involved, request approval for the student to take part in the activity.

Yours faithfully

Principal

ANNEXURE F

TEMPLATE LETTER TO STAFF WITH EXCURSION DETAILS

Please fill in details below as appropriate and delete when done.

Dear [name]

The following details relate to the overseas excursion to [insert destination] being organised for students in [name the year (s) or group] and which you will be accompanying.

Include the following details:

  • Destination
  • times and dates of departure and return
  • excursion outline
  • mode of travel and route, including supervision available
  • Itinerary
  • purpose of the excursion including planned outcomes for students and relevance to the curriculum
  • nature of activities to be undertaken during the excursion
  • accommodation arrangements
  • name of the Team Leader
  • names of other teacher/leader/s, and accompanying adults
  • vaccinations (if required) – staff should be advised to seek advice from a medical practitioner as soon as possible and at least six weeks before departure.
  • equipment and clothing needed
  • food requirements
  • Anticipated expenses
  • details of cost including refundable and non-refundable monies
  • special rules applicable to the excursion
  • procedures for dealing with unacceptable behaviour. These procedures should include the possibility of exclusion and return home of students
  • means of contact with the group
  • emergency contacts and procedures in the event of a critical incident

The following standard paragraphs may be included:

Immunisation Requirements

The School has contacted a medical practitioner who advise that the immunisation requirements for (insert destination) are (insert details, if none write none).

You are advised to seek advice from a medical practitioner in relation to your particular requirements as soon as possible and at least six weeks before departure.

Australian Government Travel Advice

The DFAT website has the current travel advice from the Australian Government, this is found at: http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/.

To see the advice for (insert destination) select (insert destination) from the alphabetical list. The site also contains a wide range of general travel advice and information.

Contact was made with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to obtain details of the current travel advice relating to the country that the school intends to visit on (insert date), travel advice for (insert destination) states:

“ Insert travel advice”

The School’s policy is that travel will not be undertaken in areas subject to a travel advisory prior to departure of ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Advised not to travel’. This may result in a last minute cancellation of the excursion and the loss of deposits or other expenses which may or may not be recoverable under your personal travel insurance. We trust that you will understand that this policy is designed to protect the safety of the students involved in the excursion.

Indemnification and insurance arrangements for Staff

[Individual school’s should check the applicable legal situation in your state. In most cases the following statements will be correct but it is provided as general comment only]

Staff are afforded the School’s protection under the principle of vicarious liability (i.e. where an employer bears the cost of damages resulting from an employee’s negligence) when on duty and following School policy during school organised activities. Staff of the School are covered by worker’s compensation if on duty at the time of an accident. All staff undertaking school excursions approved by the principal are deemed to be on duty .

Staff need to be aware that if they arrange activities within an overseas excursion without ensuring relevant School policies are followed, they could be individually liable in the event of an accident. In such circumstances staff may not be afforded the School’s protection under the principle of vicarious liability i.e. where an employer bears the costs of damages resulting from an employee’s negligence. Similarly, staff may not be covered by worker’s compensation if they are injured while involved in an excursion activity that does not have the official approval of the Principal.

Staff members are advised that travel insurance is required for all participants

Tax Deductibility of Expenses

The excursion is an official school activity and staff members involved in the excursion are considered to be on duty during the whole period of the excursion. Accordingly we understand that, subject to the necessary substantiation requirements being met, staff members should be able to claim a person income tax deduction for costs associated with this excursion. Please note, however, that the School does not provide financial and taxation advice and staff should seek confirmation of their individual circumstances with their taxation advisers.

Yours faithfully

Principal

ANNEXURE G

TEMPLATE CONSENT FORM FOR PARENTS

Please fill in details below as appropriate and delete when done.

I give permission for my child ………………………………………………………………………………………………..

to take part in the overseas excursion to ………………………………………………………………………………..

from …………………………………………………. to …………………………………………………………….(date/s)

In developing the consent form to parents, include where necessary:

  • authorisation for the Team Leader to make arrangements for the welfare of the student (including medical or surgical treatment) in an emergency
  • agreement to meet the costs associated with any emergency arrangement made by the teacher in charge.
  • agreement that the student will be under the authority of the school for the duration of the excursion, and that the teacher in charge is authorised to return the student home at the expense of the parent/guardian if the Team Leader considers that circumstances warrant such action
  • request for information about current medical requirements and/or other needs of the child relevant to the activity
  • request the Medical Information and Consent form be completed and returned to the school
  • day telephone contact number

I have read the attached information regarding this overseas excursion and understand what it contains.

I have taken out travel insurance.

Full name of Parent/Guardian (please print):

………………………………………………………………………………….…………………………………………………

Signature of Parent/Guardian: ……………………………………………………………………….. Date: / /

Include, if appropriate –

For swimming and water activities

I agree to my child taking part in swimming/water activities associated with the excursion.

Please provide details of any special requirements necessary for the student to participate in swimming/water activities

ANNEXURE H

TEMPLATE LETTER TO PARENTS FOR MEDICAL INFORMATION

Please fill in details below as appropriate and delete when done.

Dear Parents/Guardians

I am attaching a Medical Information and Consent Form and ask that you complete and return this to the school as soon as practicable.

The information you are asked to give on the attached form will be used to record the student’s medical details. The contents and use of this form meet the requirements of the Privacy Act 1988 and will be treated as confidential. This information will be made available to government or private medical or para-medical staff and other relevant officers in the event of an accident or emergency.

Management of Medical Conditions

The department is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for students. While school staff have a duty of care to students to provide first aid assistance when required, parents will be aware that schools cannot be responsible for the general management of medical conditions.

In special circumstances, staff may be able to assist with the administration of medication. In these cases, School policy requires me to ensure that a comprehensive written authority is obtained from the student’s parents and to seek from them a written statement from the student’s doctor authorising a member of staff to administer the prescribed medication.

Emergency Treatment of an Asthma Attack

Please read this section carefully and seek clarification from your family doctor if necessary.

You are asked to indicate on the attached form if the student suffers from asthma. If the student should suddenly collapse and/or has difficulty in breathing, as with all medical emergencies, professional help will be sought immediately. Whether or not the student is known to have pre-existing asthma or other health problems, a bronchodilator inhaler device (“puffer”) will be administered while awaiting medical assistance. This treatment could be lifesaving and the generally accepted view is that bronchodilator inhalers are safe and are accepted as a first line therapy to be used in the emergency procedures for asthma.

Parents and guardians are reminded that travel insurance is essential

Your cooperation in completing and returning the medical information form promptly would be appreciated.

Yours faithfully

Principal

Date

ANNEXURE I

EXCURSION MEDICAL INFORMATION AND CONSENT FORM

This form is intended to be used to assist the school in the case of any medical treatment required or medical emergency involving a student on an overseas excursion.

A copy of each student’s form must be taken on the excursion.

The School collects the information contained in this form to provide or arrange first aid and other medical treatments for students. The information collected will be held at the School and will be made available to staff of the school and to medical or paramedical staff in the case of an accident or emergency. The information contained in the form is personal information and it will be stored, used and disclosed in accordance with the requirements of the Privacy Act 1998 (Cwth) and the School’s Privacy Policy. Parents/carers note that in the absence of an Emergency Treatment Plan only standard First Aid should be administered.

Student’s Name: ………………………………………………………….. Date of Birth: …………………………..Sex: □ M □ F

School:…………………………………….School Year:………..Camp/Excursion: ………………………………

Parent/Carer:

Address:

Contact Telephone Nos – Business Hours:……………………. After Hours………..………. Mobile:…………..………

Other Contact for Emergency: Telephone No:

Name of Student’s Doctor: Telephone No:

Medicare No: …………………………….… Private Health Fund: ………….……….… Membership Number…

Please tick if your child suffers any of the following:

□ allergies

□ anaphylaxis

□ asthma

□ blood pressure

□ diabetes

□ eczema

□ epilepsy

□ fainting

□ fits or blackouts

□ hayfever

□ headaches

□ heart condition

□ nose bleeds

□ reaction to drugs

□ sight/hearing problems

□ sun screen sensitivity

□ other – …………………………………….

If you have ticked any of the boxes above an Emergency Treatment Plan must be provided. NB. Without an Emergency Treatment Plan the school can only provide first aid treatment.

Date of last tetanus injection:

Has the student suffered from any acute illness or injury or been treated by a medical practitioner for an illness or injury during the last 4 weeks?Yes □ No □

If YES, please state nature of illness/injury and obtain a report from the doctor that the student is fit to undertake the camp/excursion………………………………………………………………………………

Is the student presently taking any medication?Yes □ No □

If YES, please state name of medication, dosage, etc:…………………………………………………..

The Team Leader must be informed about the management of any medication prior to leaving on an excursion. Arrangements need to be agreed on the transport, storage and administration of medication. In all cases medication must be labelled with the students name, dosage and frequency of administration.

I consent to my child receiving paracetamol for temporary pain relief?Yes □ No □

Are you aware of any physical or psychological limitations of your child? Please give details.

Is there any other information which you believe may help us to provide the best possible care?

Consent to medical attention. In the case of my child requiring medical treatment or in the case of a medical emergency, I consent to the school providing first aid or treatment as outlined in an emergency treatment plan and I further authorise the school, where it is impracticable to communicate with me, to arrange for him/her to receive such medical or surgical treatment as may be deemed necessary. I also undertake to pay any costs which may be incurred for the medical treatment, ambulance transport and drugs.

Signed: Parent/Carer Date:

ANNEXURE J

EMERGENCY PLAN TEMPLATE

Please note, this form needs to be modified, examples are provided as a guide only.

Emergency Contact Numbers-

College:

During school hours:

After school hours

Principal/Deputy Principal:

(Or whoever has been designated the contact person and is contactable 24 hours in case of emergency)

Contact numbers at destination-

Team Leader:

Mobile:

Accommodation:

Australian Embassy/Consulate:

Hospital:

Emergency/Safety Procedures

The supervising teacher(s) will at all times carry the home numbers (including mobiles and email addresses) of all participating students. All families will be given a list of participant’s telephone numbers and a communication chain will be established.

A qualified First Aid person will accompany the trip. A First Aid kit for the treatment of minor illnesses will be carried by the accompanying teacher (s) at all times.

In the case of an accident or medical emergency, immediate medical treatment will be sought and the student may be transported to the nearest hospital.

In the event of an emergency, the Team Leader will contact………..…………… who will then contact parents, as the emergency plan flow chart states.

Signed:…………………………………….(Team Leader)

Date:……………………………………….


Please note this form needs to be modified to suit the excursion, examples are provided as a guide only.