File IJOA: School-Sponsored Field Trips and Other Student Travel


The Board recognizes the educational value of school-sponsored trips as a means of supplementing and reinforcing the curriculum and as a vehicle for encouraging and supporting student participation in academic, artistic, and athletic activities, performances and competitions.

This policy provides guidance for the various kinds of trips in which M.S.A.D. No. 75 students may participate.

The Superintendent is responsible for implementing procedures for the safe execution of field trips and other student travel. (See Procedure IJOA-R.)

Field Trips

“Field trip” means a trip that is organized and conducted by one or more M.S.A.D. No. 75 employees as a means of accomplishing particular curriculum objectives. All students within the class or grade, or curriculum-related subgroup within a class, may be eligible to participate.

Field trips must be approved in advance by the building principal. Other trips, as indicated later in this policy, may also require approval by the Superintendent and Board.

Teachers and principals will be expected to consider the following factors in planning and approval of field trips:

  1. Objectives of the proposed trip and the anticipated learning outcomes;
  2. Specific learning activities to be experienced during the trip;
  3. Suitability of the activity and distance traveled to the age of students;
  4. Mode and availability of transportation, with school bus transportation arranged so as not to disrupt school bus schedules;
  5. Arrangements for meals (if applicable);
  6. Availability of funding for all necessary expenses through the school budget or other appropriate sources:

In addition, the Board requires that:

  1. Parents/guardians give written permission for field trip participation;
  2. Adequate supervision be provided to maintain discipline and safety and to respond to emergencies; and
  3. Students participating in field trips conduct themselves in a manner consistent with Board policies and school rules.
  4. Any overnight curriculum-related trip must be approved by the Board

Competition/Performance Trips

“Competition trip” means any trip related to an academic, artistic, athletic, or other student competition or performance that involves individual students or teams. Any competition trip that is outside those scheduled for the year must be approved in advance by the building principal. Approval may be contingent upon availability of funding through the school budget or other sources.

Other School-Sponsored Trips

Other school-sponsored trips are those that are organized and conducted by one or more employees of M.S.A.D. No. 75 as a supplement to the curriculum, as a class social activity, or as an activity planned by a student club or organization. Such trips may include overnight, long-distance in-State or out-of-State travel, or foreign travel. To be school-sponsored, the trip must relate directly to the curriculum or to activities for which the student club is organized.

Participation in such trips is entirely voluntary. There shall be no extra credit awarded for participation and no loss of credit for not taking a trip.

Participation may be limited to students taking courses related to the purpose of the trip or to students who are affiliated with the student club or organization planning the trip.

The Superintendent and Board must approve, in advance, any trips involving out-of-State travel, and all overnight and foreign trips. Approval may be contingent upon availability of funding from the school budget and other sources, including student fundraising.

Adequate supervision must be provided to maintain discipline and safety and to respond to emergencies.

Students participating in field trips and other school-sponsored trips must conduct themselves in a manner consistent with Board policies and school rules. Students who violate Board policy or school rules will be subject to disciplinary consequences.

Non-School-Sponsored Travel

Travel organized by M.S.A.D. No. 75 employees, parents or others that is not an extension of the instructional program or school-sponsored activities and has not been approved as a school-sponsored trip in compliance with this policy will be considered a non-school-sponsored trip.

All responsibility for non-school-sponsored trips lies with the individual(s) or group(s) organizing them. The Board accepts no responsibility for non-school-sponsored trips, and organizers should be aware that such trips or excursions are not covered by the school unit’s liability insurance.

To minimize the impact of these trips on the instructional program and operation of the schools, the Board strongly encourages organizers/sponsors to schedule non-school-sponsored trips during weekends and/or vacation periods. Staff members planning or participating in non-school-sponsored travel must notify the building principal of such plans. Student absences due to participation in non-school-sponsored travel will be considered unexcused absences.

Instructional time (defined as regular scheduled classes including study halls) may not be used to promote the trip or distribute materials. Individuals or groups who wish to use the schools for the purpose of publicizing trips or recruiting participants and parents/chaperones may do so in accordance with the Board’s Policy KF. Individuals or groups wishing to distribute promotional materials may do so only in accordance with the Board’s Policy KHC. Non-school-sponsored trips must not be represented as school functions or as related to, or an extension of, the District’s instructional, co-curricular or extracurricular programs.

It is the responsibility of any staff engaging in such trips or activities to notify the parents of prospective and participating students that this is not a school activity, but an independent voluntary trip organized or lead by that teacher or staff member. To minimize any risk of misunderstanding, the following statement must be made in any informational meetings or materials promoting the trip:

“This trip is not approved or sponsored by the M.S.A.D. No. 75 Board. It has not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by authorized M.S.A.D. No. 75 administrators; and it is not covered by any of M.S.A.D. No. 75’s insurance policies.”

Cross Reference:
  • KHB – Advertising in the schools
  • KHC – Distribution/Posting of Non-School Materials
  • JEA – Compulsory Attendance
  • JEAA – Student Attendance

FIRST READING: September 12, 2019
SECOND READING: September 26, 2019
ADOPTION: September 26, 2019

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