School Trips Wales: Q&A For Teachers

School Trips Wales: Q&A For Teachers

How up-to-date are Pro-Active Adventure’s programmes?

From the very beginning Pro-Active Adventure has employed innovative and creative education programmes. We have employed outdoor education in some innovative research unparalleled by other organisations. Please call us to discuss details. Utilising the very latest equipment & methodologies for the delivery of our programmes we work closely with our consultants and teachers from our staff team to ensure the educational benefits of each course we deliver.

What are the benefits of a school residential visit to my pupils?

Our programmes meet several requirements of the National Curriculum, a visit to Pro-Active will provide your pupils with a new learning environment that is exciting, challenging and fun. Most of our activities satisfy or can be linked to the learning outside the classroom criteria. Pupils will have opportunities to extend their horizons, build their confidence and self-esteem, and develop independence by trying educational activities in a safe, secure environment. We have found time and time again that a residential experience with Pro-Active promotes a sense of citizenship and often brings a class and its teacher closer together.

What qualifications do the instructors hold?

All our instructors hold multiple National Governing Body Awards (NGBs). They also have at least three years post qualifying experience. We do not recruit newly qualified instructors each season like many other centres do. All staff at Pro-Active and the Tywyn team also hold an enhanced CRB check to work with children. The team have also undergone special training in subjects such as child development and child protection.

What is your accommodation like?

There is a range of accommodation style for the school will choose across the YHA hostels we work with in South Wales. However boys and girls sleep in bunk beds on separate floors in warm, comfortable dorms. Each dormitory has its own shower and toilet facilities. Sheets, duvets and pillows are provided. Rooms in the main house have en-suite bathrooms. See Accommodation.

Our centre in Tywyn uses the local “Pantienion Hall Hotel” which has similar but more basic arrangements for schools that are working on a budget.

Do children from different schools mix?

In principle this will not happen, however at most YHA hostels there are usually several schools staying at a time, each remaining together with their own classmates throughout the day for activities. The evening is the only time of the day when it is possible to meet and make new friends from other schools; however this will really be at your discretion. Children from different schools never share the same dorms or shower facilities.

What is included in the fee?

The booking fee covers a fully supervised programme of educational courses, as well as adventure activities, evening activities are an added extra if you wish. Obviously comfortable accommodation, good, healthy meals are also included. There are several standard packages of activities for you to choose from, alternatively we can design your own personal package for as long or short a stay as you need. The booking price does not include transport to and from the centre, but does cover travel between the centre and off-site locations.

How secure are YHA hostels?

YHA hostels have secure and clearly defined borders with perimeter fencing. All public areas are monitored by centre staff, to maintain the highest safety standards at all times. There are also 24 hour manager available to manage any issues.

Do you have fire drills?

On arriving at your YHA hostel all schools receive a fire and safety briefing, where all emergency exits and meeting areas are pointed out as well as procedures for evacuating buildings.

How do I find out about availability and prices?

Simply call head office on: 01588 630123 for all locations in South Wales and we will only be too happy to provide you with more information, answers to any questions and a quote for your chosen dates.

What is your payment process?

You will receive two invoices, one from Pro-Active Adventure for the activity provision and one from the YHA for the accommodation and catering. When you confirm your booking a deposit of 25% of the total accommodation cost will be required. 3 months before your arrival date an invoice for the remaining payment will be sent. This will normally be due for payment one month before your arrival date.

Pro-Active will send an invoice for the activity provision two months before your arrival date which will be due on the 25th of the month prior to your visit.

What care and support is available out of office hours?

There is a 24 hour manager available to manage any issues, there is also a Pro-Active duty team leader to help with your needs.

Will pupils need additional spending money?

All children’s immediate needs are cared for. However most YHA hostels do have a small tuck shop for those extra snacks, there are also postcards, limited pencils and souvenirs like T-shirts. There are also a range of drinks machines in the games room. So a little extra pocket money might be a good idea if you wish.

What’s the food like?

Meals will are all be healthy & nutritious for a growing body. The menus meet and exceed Government regulations and vary from day to day according to season. Meals are served in a communal dining room. Vegetarian selections and children with special religious or dietary needs are catered for. Please advise us of your needs at the time of booking.

What about pupils that feel home sick or have an emotional upset?

All staff are trained to be able to take responsibility for the emotional wellbeing of the pupils who are in their care and to offer them any support they need. We aim to create a warm and supportive environment at all times during their stay with us.

Can parents telephone their children?

In special circumstances, there is no problem parents can contact reception and they will be put in touch. However, we have found that parents phoning their children just to talk often makes the children’s time away from home harder, because they tend to become home sick. There are pay phones in the centre so if a young person wants to phone home they can.

What about pupils with special needs?

Pro-Active Adventure has a commitment to improving its ability to work with special needs groups. We can manage many special needs as long as teachers make us aware of them at the time of booking. We will advise you if we think we are not equipped to care appropriately in a specific situation.

Do you have first aid cover?

All instructors are fully qualified in first aid, and there is also a qualified member of staff on site at all times.

When is bedtime?

Children are on activities with Pro-Active staff until about 8:30pm, when they will be handed back to yourself who will have an agreed bedtime with the pupils. However we do have a lights-out policy of 10:30pm.

Do you do visits to schools to meet parents and teachers?

Yes, we are happy to visit you at school to meet parents and pupils to make a small presentation and answer any questions.

What do my pupils need to bring?

Clothing and shoes worn outside during activities will inevitably get dirty, so old clothes should be worn during activities. Obviously it’s fine to get changed into something better in the evening. We try to help children look after their things, but items regularly get lost or left behind so it’s a good idea to provide your child with a packing list, so that they can check items back into their bag when it’s time to go home.

As a minimum we recommend:

  • 1 Bath towel, toilet bag with at least toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, soap/shower gel.
  • Night clothes.
  • Socks and underwear.
  • 4 t-shirts/lightweight tops, at least 2 sweatshirts. (An extra sweatshirt just for activities is ideal).
  • 1 thick pullover and 1 lighter one.
  • 3 pairs of trousers/jeans and ideally a pair of tracksuit bottoms.
  • Swimming gear and towel.
  • 2 Pairs of trainers. (One old pair).
  • Waterproof jacket. Trousers are a good idea if you have them.
  • Sturdy shoes.
  • Small rucksack. (For carrying lunch and water on activities).
  • Large plastic bag for dirty clothes.
  • Hat and gloves.
  • Water bottle.
  • Don’t forget any medication you may be taking, it is a good idea to give this to your teacher to look after.

We recommend that your pupil doesn’t bring:

Mobile phones, electronic games, ipods or mp3 players, expensive cameras, expensive or favourite clothing, hair straighteners, curling tongs, expensive or cherished jewellery.

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