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Escondido Union ESD |  BP  6153  Instruction

Field Trips   

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The Board of Education recognizes that educational field trips are important components of a student's development. Besides supplementing and enriching classroom learning experiences, such trips encourage new interests among students, make them more aware of community resources, and help them relate their school experiences to the outside world. Field trips are permissible if they are conducted for educational purposes to enhance the students' intellectual growth and are directly related to district-approved curriculum.

Field trips may be conducted in connection with the district's course of study or school-related social, educational, cultural, athletic, school band activities, or extracurricular activities. A field trip to a foreign country may be permitted to familiarize students with the language, history, geography, natural science, and other studies relative to the district's course of study.

The board believes that careful planning can greatly enhance the value and safety of such trips. In advance of a study trip, teachers shall determine educational objectives which relate directly to the curriculum. Principals shall ensure that teachers develop plans which provide for the best use of students' learning time while on the trip. Teachers also shall provide appropriate instruction before and after the trip.

(cf. 1321 - Solicitation of Funds from and by Students)

(cf. 6145 - Extracurricular/Co-curricular Activities)


Routine Field Trip - A trip conducted before, during, or after school, away from the school site, inside or outside San Diego County, and not requiring overnight stay

Extended Field Trip - A trip inside or outside San Diego County requiring one or more night's overnight stay


The principal or designee is authorized to approve all routine field trips and shall submit an annual report to the superintendent of all routine field trips taken. The principal shall notify the superintendent, prior to the trip, of all routine field trips taken outside the county.

Requests for field trips involving out-of-county, out-of-state, out-of-country, or overnight travel shall be submitted to superintendent or designee. The superintendent or designee shall review the request and make a recommendation to the board as to whether the request should be approved by the board. All other field trips shall be approved in advance by the principal.

The principal shall establish a process for approving a staff member's request to conduct a field trip. When planning trips, staff shall consider student safety, objectives of instruction, the most effective use of instructional time, and the distance from school, district and student expense, and transportation and supervision requirements. Principals may exclude from the trip any student whose presence on the trip would pose a safety or disciplinary risk.

Other school employees and/or parents/guardians (chaperones) also may participate in this supervision and may be asked to attend preparatory training sessions and/or meetings. Suggested guidelines for adult supervision are: ten students to one adult (grades kindergarten through sixth) and fifteen students to one adult (grades seventh through eighth). In preschool, state guidelines establish a ratio of eight children to one adult.

(cf. 3541.1 - Transportation for School-related Trips)

(cf. 5142 - Safety)

(cf. 5143 - Insurance)

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

(cf. 5144.1 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)

Other Student Activities

All other off-campus, school-sponsored activities involving students, which are conducted outside the normal instructional day, must have prior approval from the superintendent or designee in order for the school district liability insurance to be applicable. Without such approval, the school district assumes no liability for activities outside the normal instructional day. Students may be charged for purely recreational, extracurricular activities conducted outside the normal instructional day.

Trips to Washington D.C., Sacramento, and other destinations which have significant cost shall not be conducted under the auspices of the school district. These activities may occur if they are optional for students, under the auspices of the parent organization, student council, etc., and are conducted outside of the regularly scheduled school day.


If the board allocates funds for educational field trips, individual schools may be provided with budgetary allocations so that they can plan ahead. Special trip expense funds may be established when necessary for fund-raising purposes.

1. No student shall be prevented from participating in a field trip because of a lack of sufficient funds or for not participating in fund-raising activities. No trip shall be authorized if any student would be excluded from participation because of a lack of sufficient funds.

2. Students may not be charged for costs of field trips, including admission fees, which relate directly to the district-approved instructional program.

3. Costs of routine field trips directly related to district-approved curriculum may be charged to the school's general fund, in accordance with program regulations.

4. Funding for instructional field trips may also be accomplished through fund-raising activities conducted in accordance with Board policy 1321, Solicitation of Funds From and By Students.

5. District funds shall not be used to pay student expenses for out-of-state or out-of-country field trips or excursions. However, expenses of instructors, chaperones, and other personnel participating in such trips, as well as incidental expenses for the use of district equipment during the trip, may be paid from district funds. (Education Code 35330)

(cf. 1230 - School-connected Organizations)

(cf. 1321 - Solicitation of Funds from and by Students)


1. Required transportation for routine or extended field trips may be provided by chartered bus scheduled with the district's transportation contractor or private transportation.

2. Private automobile providers shall complete "Permit to Use Private Vehicle" and comply with all standards to authorize use of private transportation.

Special Education/504

No student should be denied access to a field trip or other activity on the basis of disability. If a school or general education teacher plans a field trip, special education students attending that class may not be excluded from the trip.

Access can be denied based on behavior only if the behavior is not related to the student's disability and the standard is equally applied to all students.

When serving students with disabilities, it is the responsibility of the special education teachers, grade-level general education teachers, and school administrator to share information about school activities and field trips in order to facilitate timely decisions about student participation. This participation would be based on appropriateness determined by the teacher(s) of record and/or the IEP team.

Legal Reference:


8760 Authorization of outdoor science and conservation programs

32040-32044 First aid equipment: field trips

35330 Excursions and field trips

35331 Provision for medical or hospital service for pupils (on field trips)

35332 Transportation by chartered airline

35350 Transportation of students

44808 Liability when pupils not on school property

48908 Duties of pupils; authority of teachers


17540 Travel promoters

17550-17550.9 Sellers of travel

17552-17556.5 Educational travel organizations

Management Resources:


American Red Cross:

California Association of Directors of Activities:

U.S. Department of Homeland Security:


adopted: October 23, 2008 Escondido, California

revised: October 12, 2006

revised: August 16, 2007

revised: March 13, 2008