Learning outside the classroom guidance for Educational Visits Coordinators
Essential guidance to EVCs for their role and responsibilities
An Educational Visits Coordinator (EVC) is defined in OEAP National Guidance document 1a Glossary and Definitions as a “member of establishment staff appointed to co-ordinate all visits and with the status to effect change and be the focus of good practice”.
National Guidance (NG) is produced by the Outdoor Education Advisers’ Panel (OEAP), which provides comprehensive support for the management of high-quality outdoor learning, educational visits and adventurous activities.
Categories of Guidance for Educational Visits Coordinators
Relevant Guidance for EVCs is comprehensive and occurs in the following five categories of NG:
- Category 1 – Basic essentials
- Category 2 – Making the case
- Category 3 – Legal framework and employer systems
- Category 4 – Good practice
- Category 5 – Policies, planning and evaluation.
The document 3.1b Establishment roles and their inter-dependence states that
“It is good practice for all establishments to have an Educational Visits Coordinator (EVC), and the employer’s policy may make this a requirement. In smaller establishments, the role of EVC is sometimes held by the head/manager. Where an EVC is not nominated, by default the responsibilities of the role rest with the head/manager.”
The EVC is the establishment’s focal point for planning and monitoring visits and outdoor learning. They should work closely with the head/manager and with Visit Leaders.
The responsibilities of EVCs
Document 3.4j Educational Visits Coordinator (EVC) is particularly helpful as a starting point, as it provides guidance on their specific responsibilities.
“The EVC should be specifically competent. The level of competence required can be judged in relation to the size of the establishment as well as the extent and nature of the visits planned. Evidence of competence may be through qualification, but more usually will be through the experience of practical leadership over many years. Such a person should be an experienced Visit Leader with sufficient status within the establishment to guide the working practice of colleagues leading Visits.
“This cannot be a purely administrative role, although certain functions may be delegated to an administrator.”
Key functions of the EVC include:-
- Being a champion for all aspects of visits and outdoor learning
- Challenging colleagues across all curriculum areas to use visits and outdoor learning effectively
- Supporting/overseeing planning so that well considered and prepared arrangements can lead to well-managed, engaging, relevant, enjoyable and memorable visits/outdoor learning
- Mentoring leaders and aspirant leaders
- Ensuring that planning complies with your employer’s requirements and that the arrangements are ready for approval within agreed timescales
- Supporting your head/manager and governors/trustees in approval decisions
- Ensuring that all activity is reviewed, that good practice is shared
- Keeping their senior leadership team and governors/trustees informed about the visits and outdoor learning taking place – and their contribution to establishment effectiveness.
There are also links to many other supporting OEAP National Guidance documents.