NORTHFIELD BOARD OF EDUCATION FILE CODE: 6153
Northfield, New Jersey
A. This regulation:
1. Covers all off-site activities and field trips including local and overnight;
2. Outlines principals’ and staff responsibilities in relation to the out of school movement of students and staff; and
3. Sets out requirements to help ensure the safety of students on Off-Site Activities and field trips.
A. An off-site activity or field trip is an educational activity by students, under the supervision of a teacher, outside normal school boundaries;
B. Teacher in charge refers to the teacher designated by the Principal to organize the excursion and to have ultimate responsibility and therefore authority while the activity is in progress;
C. Legal duty of care requires that teachers shall take all reasonable measures to ensure the safety of any school student under their care. This duty of care will arise whenever a student/teacher relationship exists;
D. Parents(s)/guardian(s) is (are) inclusive of those with parental responsibility;
E. Informed consent means that parents give agreement to their child participating in an activity after they have been made aware of the details of the activity and the risks involved; and
F. Accompanying adults include teachers, school administrative staff, parents, chaperones, activity leaders and community members known to the school and of good character.
A. It is the responsibility of the Principal to ensure that:
1. Approval for the conduct of off-site activities and field trips are given by the Superintendent of Schools;
2. All participating teaching staff know and adhere to the requirements of relevant board policies and procedures, supervision requirements and safety procedures;
3. Accompanying chaperones/adults receive written copies of their responsibilities and school policies;
4. Before the planned excursion is undertaken, precautions are taken in relation to the safety of the participants and that supervision will be adequate in relation to the number and needs of students, their maturity, anticipated behavior and the activities planned;
5. Arrangements are made for any student unable to participate in an excursion by having alternative activities and/or strategies available;
6. All staff and chaperones/adults are made aware that they must not drink alcohol of any kind whatsoever during the trip;
7. All teaching staff are aware that if they arrange off-site activities or field trips without ensuring board policy is followed, they could be individually liable in the event of an accident. In such circumstances staff may not be afforded the board’s protection under the principle of vicarious liability i.e. where an employer bears the cost of damages resulting from an
employees’ negligence. Similarly, staff may not be covered by workers’ compensation if they are injured while involved in an off-site activity or field trip which does not have the official approval of the Superintendent of Schools and/or the board of education; and
8. Copies of emergency contacts and procedures, and contingency plans have been provided to all teachers and adults/chaperones.
B. It is the responsibility of the teacher in charge to:
1. Know the requirements of the board policies and procedures and to ensure that all relevant procedures are followed;
2. Ensure that students and parents are aware of supervision and transportation arrangements;
3. Give consideration to those occasions when it is desirable in general school off-site activities and field trips for a participating staff member to have a current first aid certificate and for a first aid kit to be carried;
4. Ensure that all accompanying chaperones/adults are appropriately qualified and/or experienced and are advised of their responsibilities and relevant board policies and safety procedures;
5. Ensure that accompanying chaperones/adults act with due care and in good faith in assisting teachers to carry out their duty of care;
6. Gain informed consent by ensuring that parental information, medical and consent forms are issued and completed and returned prior to the excursion;
7. Develop emergency contacts and procedures for all excursions; and
8. For overnight excursions, ensure that girls and boys are not accommodated in the same rooms.
C. It is the responsibility of all school staff to exercise their duty of care throughout an excursion and ensure that board policies are followed.
D. The teacher in charge submits the off-site activity/field trip request form in time to obtain Board approval prior to the date of the off-site activity/field trip.
A. Accompanying chaperones/adults may be used to meet the supervision requirement provided the principal is satisfied there are sufficient teachers to maintain adequate control of the whole excursion, and to control each activity. Additional chaperones/adults should accompany excursions when extra care is considered necessary for the safety and welfare of students.
1. For mixed groups of boys and girls both genders must be represented amongst the accompanying chaperones/adults;
2. For groups of either all boys or all girls on overnight excursions, there must be a least one teacher of the same gender as the students;
3. When teaching staff numbers are limited, an accompanying chaperone/adult known to the school, of good character and with relevant qualifications and/or experience may be used to meet the gender balance requirement; and
4. Responsibility for and control of the excursion remains with the teacher in charge.
Adopted: November 21, 2005
NJSBA Review/Update: January 2017