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DfE clarifies advice on school trips abroad

— 2 Aug 2021 09:25:09 by Kate Moore

Chateau de la Baudonniere school trip

English school groups could return to Normandy in the autumn!

Following a legal challenge by the School Travel Forum, the Department for Education (DfE) has clarified its guidance for English schools wanting to book and take school trips abroad.

The revised DfE advice, updated on 19 July 2021 clears up the confusion about when English schools can book trips abroad and gives an unequivocal greenlight to schools wanting to secure their French trip in the 21/22 school year.

The guidance for Scottish schools is slightly different and can be found here.

School trips to France can resume in line with international travel rules 

The updated guidance for English schools states that groups can travel abroad, subject to prevailing travel restrictions, from the autumn term. What's more, the DfE update gives an unequivocal greenlight to schools wishing to book international school trips for the future.

The key points are summarised below: 

  • From the start of the new academic year (21/22), schools can go on international visits that have previously been deferred or postponed
  • From the start of the 2021 autumn term, schools can organise new international visits for the future
  • Schools must ensure that any new bookings have adequate financial protection in place
  • Organisers must undertake full and thorough risk assessments in relation to all educational visits and ensure that any public health advice is included
  • Educational visits must comply with international travel legislation 

Extra flexibility with our COVID-19 Peace Of Mind Promise

The DfE guidance says that schools can now book new educational trips as long as they have ‘adequate financial protection’ in place, such as using a company that offers flexible COVID booking terms. 

That's why we are providing additional FINANCIAL PROTECTION and BOOKING FLEXIBILITY so that school groups can confidently rebook their next trip to Normandy.

Support with risk assessments

The DfE guidance reiterates that schools should undertake full and thorough risk assessments in relation to all educational visits to ensure they can be undertaken safely. School trips must be conducted in line with relevant coronavirus (COVID-19) secure guidelines and regulations in place at that time. 

To support your enhanced risk assessment we have produced a summary of our additional COVID safety measures to demonstrate that we have the expertise, financial security and emergency back-up in place for you to return to our centres in confidence. 

There’s still time to book your French trip

Over the last academic year we have been hosting French school groups at the Château but can't wait to welcome schools again from the UK.

Though our Normandy centres are booking up fast with postponed trips from 2020 and 2021, there is still time to reserve your place for the next school year and have something positive for your students to look forward to.

Still have questions?

If you have any questions or need any further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll be very pleased to help.


All information correct at time of publication on 3 August 2021.