Purpose of this policy
To ensure schools select safe and suitable excursion venues.
Excursion venues must be safe and suitable for the activities proposed.
Venue selection and assessment
Excursion venues must be assessed and selected on the basis of their safety and suitability for the activities proposed.
It is recommended that venues are selected based on the recent and first-hand knowledge (for example, through an inspection of the site) of at least one member of the planning and supervising staff.
Criteria for assessing venues such as campsites or overnight accommodation venues should include:
- health and hygiene
- buildings and facilities
- activity equipment and the conduct of activities
- certification and qualifications of venue staff
- participant supervision provided
- risks posed by other users of the site
- emergency and risk management plans of venues
- fire precautions
- first aid facilities
- quality assurance and consumer protection
- relevant accreditations
- references from other schools.
Schools using residential campsites for overnight camping must use accredited campsites, to ensure these venues meet minimum criteria regarding safety and suitability.
Definition: Residential campsites are campsites which usually have permanent facilities (such as cooking and eating facilities, beds and an amenities block) and adventure recreation options. This definition does not include caravan parks, hotels/motels, ski lodges or Victorian government residential schools.
The Department recognises three accreditation providers:
- Australian Camps Association’s Campsite and Outdoor Activity Provider program see:
ACA Accredited Camps
- Australian Tourism Accreditation Program (ATAP) see:
ATAP Accredited Businesses (select Accredited Camp and Adventure Activity Provider)
- National Accommodation, Recreation and Tourism Accreditation (NARTA) program see:
Other venues may include:
- overnight campsites and venues that only provide accommodation such as caravan parks, hotels/motels or ski lodges
- Victorian government residential schools (for example: Rubicon Outdoor Centre or Bogong Outdoor Education Centre)
- interstate camps or excursions
- overseas venues.
ACA or NARTA programs’ accreditation criteria may be used to assess the suitability and safety of these venues. However this criteria
should be used when assessing overseas venues.
Inspection on arrival
The teacher-in-charge must check the excursion venue on arrival to assess apparent dangers and hazards and prepare contingency plans if required.