An employer’s introduction to learning outside the classroom guidance
Help for you, your role and responsibilities
An introduction for employers whose staff lead outdoor learning, off-site visits or learning outside the classroom activities.
The Outdoor Education Advisers’ Panel (OEAP) produces National Guidance, which provides comprehensive support for the management of high-quality outdoor learning, educational visits and adventurous activities.
One useful and efficient way for an employer to access relevant information is provided by the ability to search documents by role: National Guidance for employers is just one such category that can be found within OEAP National Guidance (NG).
The documents outlined below give essential guidance to you for your role and responsibilities – and will help you to implement appropriate systems.
Categories of Guidance for employers
Relevant Guidance for employers occurs in the following three categories of NG:
- Category 1 – Basic essentials
- Category 3 – Legal framework and employer systems
- Category 4 – Good practice.
The document 3.1a Requirements and Recommendations for Employers is particularly helpful for people in senior or controlling positions in organisations that employ staff who provide outdoor learning and off-site visits. Roles that this is pertinent to include:-
- Chief Executive
- Company Secretary
“Employers are legally responsible for the activities that take place in their establishments. This includes a common law duty of care towards their employees and participants in the activities, and duties under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act (1974) (HSWA) and other legislation.”
In addition to their responsibilities as an employer, local authorities also have a duty under the Children Act (2004) to ensure that there are clear and effective arrangements to protect from harm all children and young people in their area.
This means that, even though they are not responsible under the HSWA for health and safety in establishments for which they are not the employer (such as independent schools and academies), they do have an overarching responsibility to ensure that all establishments have suitable and sufficient arrangements in place for managing health and safety and child protection, including during outdoor learning and off-site visits.
The OEAP NG guidance document 3.2a Underpinning Legal Framework and Duty of Care will also prove to be most helpful.
There are also links to many other supporting OEAP National Guidance documents.