Good practice Specialist activities and visits Specific Activities Specific Activities and Hazards Specific Hazards

We have revised OEAP National Guidance document 4.4k Coronavirus to take account of the most recent UK Government guidance update.  We have also revised OEAP National Guidance document 7r Overseas Visits for the same reason, and have taken the opportunity of this revision to give more prominence to considering the environmental implications of travelling overseas.

You can download the coronavirus guidance here and the overseas visits guidance here.

National Guidance Contents


Did you know that you can scroll through a list of all of the documents on the National Guidance website?

Just hover your mouse over the contents tab on the black menu bar, and you will see the option “View All Documents”.  Click this to see the full list.

When we add new documents, or revise older documents, they appear immediately in this list, but they may take rather longer to appear in the Google search facility.  So we recommend this as a way to ensure that what you are reading is the latest version.

3.3c Checklist – Management Board/Governing Body

Checklists Checklists Model Forms and Mindmaps Personalised check lists Roles and responsibilities

We have updated the National Guidance document 3.3c Checklist – Management Board/Governing Body.

Governing Bodies and Management Boards may find this a useful tool for ensuring that they are providing a sufficient oversight of their establishment’s outdoor learning, off-site visits and learning outside the classroom.

You can download the revised document here.


Checklists Checklists Model Forms and Mindmaps Executing the plan Good practice Planning and Preparation

We have revised the National Guidance documents 4.4h Using External Providers and Facilities, 4.4f Checklist – Assessing a Provider and 8p Provider Statement.  The revisions clarify the guidance about accreditation and explain why you should not ask for a provider’s risk assessments.

We have also added a new section to 4.4h Using External Providers and Facilities about working with provider staff, which links closely with our new guidance about roles and responsibilities in 4.2a Group Management and Supervision.


AALA to be retained


A report published by the Government this week states that Ministers have decided that there remains a place for the Adventure Activities Licensing Authority (AALA). The Improving Health and Safety Final Report says that this is because it is important that parents and other carers of children can have confidence that activity providers are following good safety practices.

AALA will therefore be retained.

You can find the report here


Raising achievement through the environment

Making the case Research and reports

We have acquired a PDF of the research document “Raising Achievement through the Environment: The Case for Field Work and Field Centres” and have added it to the National Guidance research and reports section as document 2.4f.

Although this document is over ten years old, it is a valuable addition to the case for outdoor learning, in that it was able to demonstrate that pupils can learn more in the field than they can within the classroom alone.

40 pupils from a year 6 group underwent a field study course at a centre, involving learning in groups in the field. 45 pupils remained at school as a control group, following the same curriculum topic – the geography of rivers at Key Stage 2. The control group mirrored the learning format but remained within the classroom.  Both groups showed improved levels of knowledge, but, in understanding and skills, the centre-based pupils out-performed the control group by a factor of four.

In-depth analysis of the data and interviews suggested that fieldwork improves memory (“it puts pictures into your mind”), improves understanding, improves depth of meaning, improves awareness of personal growth, and improves motivation to learn.

You can read the document here.