SCHOOL TRIPS Policy Code: 3320
School trips designed to stimulate student interest and inquiry may be appropriate classroom extensions and may enhance learning in the classroom. School trips may help meet educational goals and objectives by connecting learning with experiences outside of the classroom environment.
All eligible students will be given an opportunity to participate in school trips. No student will be denied participation because of economic hardship or because the student has a disability.
A. AUTHORIZATION OF SCHOOL TRIPS
A school trip occurs when a student or group of students leaves a school campus under the sponsorship of the school and under the supervision of school employees to extend the educational experiences of that student or group. This includes such trips taken by extracurricular groups but does not include trips by athletic teams to participate in athletic events or competitions that are part of the team’s regular season or playoffs. The principal must approve all school trips in advance. School trips that involve travel out of state and/or an overnight stay must also receive prior approval from the superintendent or designee. School trips that require travel outside of the continental United States require full Board approval. The superintendent shall develop procedures for the request and approval of school trips.
B. PARENTAL NOTICE AND CONSENT
All students who participate in a school trip must provide signed parental consent forms to participate, unless a student is officially emancipated, in which case the student can consent on his or her own behalf. A student who fails to provide a signed consent form may be denied participation in the trip. No student’s grade may be lowered or raised based on parental consent to participate in the school trip. The superintendent shall develop procedures to ensure parents are given proper notice of trip details and that parents provide signed authorization and consent regarding their child’s participation and care during the trip.
The board is authorized to allow the Superintendent or designee to approve reasonable rates for school related field trips that are not required for course credit.
Students must not be charged a fee for any required school trip for which credit is granted. The board may impose fees for other non-required school trips. Pursuant to policy 4600, Student Fees, and any corresponding fee waiver or reduction procedures, any fees imposed for school trips will be waived or reduced for students who demonstrate real economic hardship.
D. STUDENT SAFETY AND DISCIPLINE
Policy 1510-4200-7270, School Safety, applies to all students, school employees, and volunteers while they are taking part in school trips. Students are also subject to the student behavior policies in the Policy 4300 series, the Code of Student Conduct, and all school rules while participating in a school trip. The superintendent shall develop any additional regulations necessary to ensure student safety, provide adequate supervision, and clarify student behavior standards.
E. TRANSPORTATION AND OTHER ACCOMMODATIONS
Policy 6320, Use of Student Transportation Services, applies to the use of vehicles for all school trips. Policy 6315, Drivers, applies to all drivers of school buses and activity buses but does not apply to drivers of charter buses who are not subject to school board authority, aside from any agreed upon provisions in the contract with the charter company.
Any contracts with outside companies to provide transportation, lodging, or other accommodations related to a school trip must be approved in accordance with policy 6420, Contracts with the Board.
The superintendent shall develop any necessary additional regulations governing transportation on school trips.
F. CHAPERONES AND VOLUNTEERS
All chaperones and volunteers accompanying students on school trips must meet the standards established by policy 5015, School Volunteers. The superintendent shall develop any necessary additional regulations governing chaperones and volunteers on school trips.
G. NON-SCHOOL SPONSORED TRIPS
A non-school sponsored trip is a trip or tour organized and sponsored by (1) an individual teacher or group of teachers acting as private citizens and not as school employees, (2) a travel agency, or (3) any other individual or association not employed by, sponsored by, or under contract with the board. The board and the school system assume no responsibility or liability for non-school sponsored trips.
Non-school sponsored trips may be promoted or advertised in the schools only in accordance with policy 5240, Advertising in the Schools. Promotional materials may be displayed or distributed in the schools only in accordance with policy 5210, Distribution and Display of Non-School Material. All promotional materials for non-school sponsored trips must prominently state that the trip is not sponsored or endorsed by the school or school system. Moreover, any employee who sponsors or recruits students for a non-school sponsored trip shall notify the students and their parents or guardians that the trip is not sponsored or endorsed by the school or school system and shall obtain a signed acknowledgement from each parent that the trip is not school-sponsored.
School employees shall not engage in any planning or administrative tasks associated with a non-school sponsored trip during the employee workday. School employees who want to use school facilities to hold a meeting concerning a non-school sponsored trip must follow the process set forth in policy 5030, Community Use of Facilities, and any corresponding regulations. School employees must use eligible leave for any time missed from work during a non-school sponsored trip.
School employees are prohibited from participating in non-school sponsored trips that conflict with instructional school days or are scheduled fewer than 10 school days prior to final exams or other state-mandated assessments.
Students will not be required to participate in any non-school sponsored trip. Students are discouraged from participating in non-school sponsored trips that conflict with instructional school days or are scheduled fewer than 10 school days prior to final exams or other state-mandated assessments. Absences for non-school sponsored trips will be designated as excused or unexcused in accordance with policy 4400, Attendance.
Legal References: G.S. 115C-47, -288, -307
Cross References: School Safety (policy 1510-4200-7270), Goals and Objectives of the Educational Program (policy 3000), Student Behavior Policies (policy 4300 series), Attendance (policy 4400), Student Fees (policy 4600), School Volunteers (policy 5015), Community Use of Facilities (policy 5030), Distribution and Display of Non-School Material (policy 5210), Advertising in the Schools (policy 5240), Use of Student Transportation Services (policy 6320), Contracts with the Board (policy 6420)
Adopted: January 12, 2015