The Learning Outside the Classroom Manifesto was launched in November 2006.This section has been added because we want to make sure that every user of www.ukschooltrips.co.uk is fully aware of the wealth of support and help that is happening for you right now, because of the manifesto, and update you on its progress. We also want to encourage you to register your support to the manifesto.

As you are already on our site looking at new ideas for school trips we know you are the type of teacher, leader or venue that can see the value and importance of learning outside the classroom and that you will be especially excited about all the developments and progress made during the last couple of years.

On October 2nd 2008 the first ever national learning outside the classroom conference and awards was held to announce the latest exciting news of support to be given to teachers and group leaders of educational visits.

Mr Ed Balls said learning outside the classroom should be part and parcel of every child’s school career. Something which we know that our registered users, who give us feedback on the number of trips they take, would strongly agree with, as in the next year the average number planned is 6 trips. This gives fantastic testament to the success of the Learning Outside the classroom manifesto to date.

The ‘Out and About’ package launched has been backed with £4.5 million of funding and is designed to give schools clear information to support organising effective learning outside the classroom opportunities for pupils.

We have done extensive research over the last few years and we know that on the whole teachers and leaders can really see the importance of learning outside the classroom but the biggest problems experienced have been the red tape and paperwork and the fear of the ‘compensation culture.’ A new quality badge scheme is now successfully in place helping venues to see how they can help teachers and educational visits leaders by cutting paperwork and by helping schools and local authorities to identify organisations that provide high quality experiences and manage safety effectively.

Mr Ed Balls thinks it is time to lay to rest teachers fears about litigation over incidents on school trips once and for all and that it is wrong to deny children valuable learning opportunities and wrap them in cotton wool.

The website www.lotc.org.uk was launched after the conference on October 2nd 2008 and was developed and designed with the help of many experts to help professionals working with young people aged 0 – 19 years to provide high quality experiences.

On the site you will find:

• New practical guidance, resources and CPD modules providing professional and development support.

• Details of the new quality badge that will recognise organisations offering high quality experiences with risk effectively managed.

• Details of the new council for Learning Outside the Classroom

We also suggest that you follow this link and become a signatory to support the manifesto in order that you receive regular updates by email of all the great progress made.

www.lotc.org.uk

In addition we hope that you are finding our in-depth function to search to your exact criteria a valuable tool and are using it well. The selection of great venues is increasing daily. Click on the section: Search School Trips and accommodation. You can then search for exactly what you want for either a school trip destination or accommodation provider. Chose the venue which appeals to you from your list of results and click through to see in-depth information of everything that venue or accommodation provider can do to support you in Learning Outside the Classroom. It is free and available to you 24 hours every day.

Should you wish to see the many venues on our site that have already been awarded the quality badge then please read the above section about LOtC Quality Badge Awards.

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