6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism – updated

Emergencies Essential Frequently Asked Questions Planning and Preparation

Over the past few days we have been in touch with the Metropolitan Police, the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure and the Department for Education to ensure that our guidance on visits and the threat from terrorism is up to date and that it is consistent with what they are saying.

As a result we have updated 6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism to include some additional advice that we think you will find useful.

You can download the revised guidance here.

6k FAQ: Visits and the threat from terrorism

Emergencies Essential Frequently Asked Questions Planning and Preparation

We will all be painfully aware of the terrorist attacks in London on Saturday evening. Following the meeting of the UK’s emergency team (cobra) on Sunday morning, the terrorist threat remains ‘severe’ (it was de-escalated from ‘critical’ during last week). The Home Secretary believes that they have the perpetrators of this attack and the Prime Minister has confirmed that we should stay vigilant and carry on as normal. (Report any suspicious activity to the police on 999 or the anti-terrorist hotline: 0800 789 321).

Consider every visit as you would normally, deciding what to do about each event on its merit. To assist in the visit planning there is helpful guidance for Visit Leaders on the threat of terrorism, which includes when visiting a major city, venue or event.  See the document here.

As part of your planning, you will be taking into account the natural anxiety of parents, teachers and pupils. If making a decision to postpone or cancel, talk to your provider and insurer and understand the implications for recovery of costs.

6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism

Emergencies Essential Frequently Asked Questions Planning and Preparation

With heightened security in the UK following the Manchester incident, here is a reminder of OEAP’s guidance on planning visits when there is a threat from terrorism – 6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism.  You can download the guidance here.

Some advisers have been asked what difference does the increased security level make to visit plans?  In its advice to the public, the Government explains how we should respond;
‘Threat levels in themselves do not require specific responses from the public. They are a tool for security practitioners working across different sectors of the Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) and the police to use in determining what protective security response may be required….Sharing national threat levels with the general public keeps everyone informed. It explains the context for the various security measures (for example airport security or bag searches) which we may encounter in our daily lives.’

It may help also to reassure parents if the visit leader telephones the venue to check about its advice to visiting groups and the measures it has in place.

Managing a residential visit when you know that some participants are in a sexual relationship

Frequently Asked Questions

We have been asked whether there is any advice we can give to visit leaders arranging residential visits who know that some of the participants are in a sexual relationship.  A new document 6m FAQs – Young people in a sexual relationship sets out the legal position along with some other issues that you will need to consider.  You can download the new document here.

Updated Foreign Office advice on travel to France

Emergencies Frequently Asked Questions

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has updated its advice about school travel to France.

The FCO now recommends that British schools planning to take groups to France between now and 6 December follow the updated French Ministry of Education’s advice not to travel to the Ile-de-France region (including the metropolitan area of Paris). The French Ministry of Education has stated that journeys travelling through the Ile-de-France region but not stopping are permitted, and that trips to the rest of France are now allowed.  You can read the full FCO advice here.

There is National Guidance advice on visits to places where there is a risk of terrorism – please see the document 6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism.  You can download it here.

New FAQ: Asking for providers’ risk assessments

Frequently Asked Questions Planning and Preparation

We have produced a new frequently asked question document: 6a FAQs: Asking for a provider’s risk assessments.

The FAQ explains that provider risk assessments can be technical documents and should be produced by competent people. Unless a visit leader is qualified to understand, assess and, if necessary, challenge a provider’s risk assessment documents, there is little purpose in asking for copies.

Such information is better gained through a pre-visit or through dialogue with the provider.

We have also added a new section about this to 4.4h Using external providers and facilities.

you can download the new FAQ here.

Foreign Office Advice on travel to France

Frequently Asked Questions Planning and Preparation

The FCO website is now advising that British schools postpone any planned trips to France until 22nd November.  The website says:

“The Foreign and Commonwealth Office recommends that British schools planning to take groups to France between now and 22 November follow the French Ministry of Education’s advice not to travel. The French Ministry of Education has advised that school trips already under way in France may continue as originally planned.”

To see the full text, please click here.

New FAQ: Visits and the threat from terrorism

Frequently Asked Questions

Following the addition of the links to Government advice that we added to 7r Overseas visits and 4.1c Off site visit emergencies: guidance for leaders earlier this week, we have now published a new FAQ – 6k FAQs: Visits and the threat from terrorism.  This document gives advice about how to prepare, and how to be safe, if your visit takes you to a place where there is a risk of terrorism.

To see the new document, please click here.