When parental consent is and isn't needed
For nursery-age children, written consent is always needed.
For children over nursery age, it's usually only needed for trips that:
- Need a higher level of risk assessment
- Are outside normal school hours
Most off-site visits don’t need written consent if they're held during school hours or are part of the curriculum, such as year-group visits to local amenities.
We strongly recommend* you still inform parents about all off-site trips, and offer them the opportunity to withdraw their child.
* Note: while the DfE's guidance (linked below) says you 'should' do this, it points to the OEAP guidance (linked below), which says it's essential.
This guidance is from section 2 of the DfE's guidance on educational visits and advice from a DfE representative.
You might want to include this in your educational visits policy – this policy isn’t statutory, but it’s best practice to have one.