Outdoor Adventure Activities Policy

  1. What is this policy about?
    1. This policy outlines the requirements for the safe conduct and management of outdoor adventure activities.
  2. Policy Statement
    1. Outdoor adventure activities play an important role in enhancing students’ health and fitness, support curriculum delivery and contribute to a positive school culture.
    2. All outdoor adventure activities:
      • must meet the mandated requirements for any activity as specified in the Outdoor Adventure Activities: Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines
      • are excursions and must meet the requirements of the Excursions Policy and Procedures
      • must include an assessment and management of risk as part of the planning.
    3. Schools will sight documentation to ensure that all activity leaders meet the qualifications and/or experience to conduct the activity as detailed in the Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines.
    4. Students participating in any outdoor adventure activity must have informed consent and current medical information provided by a parent/carer.
    5. Schools will notify interstate authorities both before departure and on return where excursions are entering remote areas.
    6. Persons who work or have contact with children while taking part in certain regulated activities or services, unless exempt under the Working with Vulnerable People (Background Checking) Act 2011, must be registered with the Office of Regulatory Services.
  3. Who does this policy apply to?
    1. This policy applies to all schools that conduct outdoor adventure activities.
  4. Context
    1. The potentially hazardous elements and the often remote settings where outdoor adventure activities are conducted, set them apart from other school activities and necessitate special precautions for the safety of participants.
  5. Responsibilities
    1. The principal: is responsible for:
      • implementing this policy
      • ensuring the teacher in charge is competent to plan, supervise and participate in the activity
      • ensuring the Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines are followed
      • seeking approval from Infrastructure Capital Works section if the school intends to permanently install infrastructure within the school boundaries to support the delivery of outdoor adventure activities.
      • verifying all documentation and approving that an activity may proceed.
    2. Policy Owner: The Director, Learning and Teaching is responsible for this policy.
  6. Monitoring and Review
    1. The Policy Owner monitors the policy. This includes an annual scan of operation and review. A full review will be conducted within a three year period. Mandatory procedures relating to specific activities will be updated as required.
  7. Contact
    1. For support contact the Learning and Teaching Branch on (02) 6205 9204.
  8. Complaints
    1. Any concerns about the application of this policy or the policy itself, should be raised:
  9. References
    1. Definitions
      • Activity leader (or Leader): is the person with the relevant qualifications and/or experience to lead the activity. The leader may be, for example, a canoeing expert who is not necessarily a teacher.
      • Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines: are the mandatory guidelines relating to a specific outdoor activity contained in this document.
      • Banned Outdoor Adventure Activities: are activities not appropriate for schools or colleges. A comprehensive list is located in the Outdoor Adventure Activities: Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines.
      • Informed consent: means that parents/carers give written agreement to their child participating in an activity after they have been made aware of the details of the activity including its associated risks and costs.
      • Non-remote: is generally a location that is not more than 30 minutes from a reliable telephone service, not more than 20 minutes from vehicle access, and less than 90 minutes or one and-a-half hours from access to medical assistance.
      • Outdoor Adventure Activities: potentially place students at a higher level of risk than usual in a classroom environment. The higher level of risk is due to the nature of the activity (for example, rock climbing, canoeing, skiing) or the circumstances in which the activity takes place (for example, a remote setting, a river or mountain environment, or in bad weather). A comprehensive list is located in the Outdoor Adventure Activities:  Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines.
      • A parent: is a person having parental responsibility for the child under the Children and Young People Act 2008, including a carer appointed under that Act.
      • Remote: is a location that is more than 30 minutes from access to a reliable telephone service, and/or more than 20 minutes from vehicle access, and/or greater than 90 minutes or one and-a-half hours from access to medical assistance.
      • Safety and Emergency Contingency Plan: refers to the written plan detailing the safety and emergency procedures the group will follow while participating in the outdoor adventure activity.
    2. Legislation
    3. Implementation Documents
      • Outdoor Adventure Activities Procedures
      • Outdoor Adventure Activities: Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines
    4. Related Policies and Information
      • Excursions Policy
      • Physical Education and Sport Policy
      • Physical Education and Sport Procedures
      • Physical Education and Sport: Activity-Specific Mandatory Guidelines
      • Risk Management Framework
      • Working with Children and Young People - Volunteers and Visitors (Interim) Policy

Outdoor Adventure Activities: OAA201702 is the unique identifier of this document. It is the responsibility of the user to verify that this is the current and complete version of the document, available on the Directorate’s website at http://www.education.act.gov.au/publications_and_policies/school_and_corporate_policies/A-Z/.