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Outings Ratio's?


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We are sessional pre-school who opertate from a timber lodge in the grounds of the local primary school (we are not part of the school and are run independently.)

 

We have been invited to watch the key stage 1 nativity play, which is lovely, however, I phoned Ofsted to make sure it was OK for staff to walk the children the short distance to the school. They said that the ratio of outings still stands 1:2!! The school grounds are secure and we are within those groundsetc, Does this seem right?

 

I seemed to remember reading on here that others have not had that ratio when going on walks etc??

 

Any advice would be appreciated.

 

Thank you

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Guest toddleo

our PLA rep told us the other day that the ratio outdoors was exactly the same as that which applied indoors! though I think your 1:2 sounds safer with our 2 and a half year olds!

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If the school has invited you and assuming it is a primary as you specify KS1, would they agree to letting some of the Yr6 escort you across the grounds?

 

I know when our local preschool visited us they didnt have any more staff than they needed for a ratio and they have a 10-15 minute walk( at child speed) along a fairly busy road! :o

 

Would you be better covered if you sought parental permission?

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I wasn't aware that there was a stated ratio for trips and outings - just some Ofsted-speak about ensuring adult:child ratios being such that children's safety was ensured. Have you checked the Standards and talked to your local early years adviser?

 

Having a 1:2 ratio does seem a bit over the top if you're not actually going out into the community. We're a sessional pre-school in the middle of a village so I obviously am not an expert. But I'd have thought that so long as you can show you've done a proper risk assessment and have good safety practices whilst walking to the school and back you should be able to show that you've considered children's safety.

 

Now if the mad caretaker is out with his menacing mowing machine, that might be a different issue!

 

Maz

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We too are an independent pre school who are within school grounds and have literally a minute walk into school I don't think anybody within our pre-school knew anything about these trip ratios either (whoops!)

 

We always use situations like this to encourage parent participation as the majority of children end up at the local school so it is good for transition also.

 

Maybe a teaching assistant could come over and help walk the children over. As said before our Yr6 come and help out as they are the meeters and greeters for the school nativity.

 

Quite a worry that 1:2 ratio though as we take regular local village walks with maybe 1:3.

 

Shelley

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Quite a worry that 1:2 ratio though as we take regular local village walks with maybe 1:3.

 

Shelley

We have a 1:2 ratio walking through the village to our allotment - but if we took this to its logical conclusion we'd need a 1:2 ratio for our fire drills when we walk into the car park adjacent to our pre-school....

 

Maz

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we have a ratio 1:2 on outings i thought that was just our choice as i know other groups who have 1:4! also we had trouble this summer arranging an outing as the place we wanted to go (country education trust) wouldn't let us go with so many adults!

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I'm not aware that Ofsted have a stipulated ratio for outings - I understand that you make your own risk assessment of the outing and staff accordingly.

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I agree with Happy Maz's comments, I think the 1-2 is just guidance, and not indicated with a * as legislation. It does seem a bit over the top. I do a much higher ratio for walks, sometimes even 1-5 as my risk assessment shows this to be safe.

 

If I were you I would email the query to Ofsted, then at least you have 'written' response, rather than advice from an invisible person on the end of a telephone line. I would also ask which part of the standards covers their response.

 

Peggy

 

p.s. Enjoy the nativity :o

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oh, apple, it is Friday night, couldn't you just tell us what it says in the new EYFS, or is this our weekend homework. :o ( only joking)

 

Peggy

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Hi Jenni

 

We're in the same position as you, an independant pre-school within the grounds of a first school. Every week we walk 100 yards to the school hall for PE with our usual staff ratio. We also play on the school field every day in the summer with the same ratio. If we walk around the school, we have our normal ratio. The only time we insist on a ratio of 1:2 is when we go out the school gates for a walk in the village. So I am very interested in this thread. The children would miss out on an awful lot if we had to have 1:2 within the school grounds because it simply wouldn't be possible, we have never considered the school grounds to be an outing. Must admit, didn't think there was a ratio for outings - oh bother will have to check now.

 

A childminder could in theory be responsible for 3 'young' children out for a walk?

 

The EYPS states

 

Children must be kept safe whilst on outings. (no really!),

 

For each specific outing, providers must carry out a full risk assessment, which includes an assessment of required adult:ratios. This assessment must take account of the nature of the outing, and consider whether it is appropriate to exceed the normal ratio requirements in accordance with the providers' procedures for supervision of children on outings. (p24)

 

Appendix 2 does not give a specific ratio for outings as far as I can see, which I would have thought it would have done, wouldn't it?

 

I haven't read the document from cover to cover!

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We are a setting with no outdoor access, we go outside for a walk everyday or to the school which is about 100 yards away but does involve crossing a road, I would like to have a 1:2 raito and recognise it is best practice (our children are 2.5 - 4).

It would be such a logistical nightmare to go out if we had to do stick to a 1:2 ratio everyday, I assess the group of children, the staff, where we are going and the benefits to the children, usually the need to get out and see the world (no windows in the hall!!!!) :oxD is desperate.

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Thank you for all your replies!! We will have 5 staff on the day plus 1 student so with a few volunteer parents we should be OK? I just wish Ofsted would be more verbal!! The only advice I got was to refer to the standards!!! Very helpful!!! NOT!

 

Thanks again

 

Jenni

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