“Some teachers should be banned permanently from taking children on school trips,” says BUSK director Pat Harris. “A number of teachers seem to think they are on holiday when in fact, they are working and legally responsible for looking after the pupils. Parents fund travel and hotel costs abroad for teachers on school trips and have every right to expect the teachers safeguard their child.” BUSK says it is high time that teachers that abuse their position are made accountable. By not challenging offending teachers and schools is not only putting children at risk, but it results in letting parents down in the worst possible way.
Mrs. Harris’s commented after media reports this week of teachers involved in a drunken brawl with one another on a school trip in Spain, and comes hot on the heels of a BUSK nation-wide petition which was launched just 24 hours before news broke of the incident in Spain. Mrs. Harris said, “This will be of specific interest to parents because the petition makes it clear that some teachers get drunk and party into the early hours of the morning and disturb coach drivers trying to sleep who are legally required to be fully rested before they get behind the wheel of the coach.
Driver fatigue is a serious issue but so is the fact that drunk teachers are not capable of ensuring pupil safety. Drivers tell BUSK that these children are in a strange country and when teachers go clubbing then there is no adult available in the event they should be needed.
“It is important to stress that not all teachers behave in this way. Many are responsible professionals who care about pupil safety. They are the same ones that will ensure children wear their safety belts and not do anything to distract the driver whilst s/he is driving. It would be wrong to tar all teachers with the same brush,” Mrs. Harris said, however BUSK says that around 1,000 drivers are speaking out about this issue. It is more common than people seem to think and parents need to be better informed – after all, 1,000 drivers cannot be wrong, can they?
To sign the national petition to safeguard children on school trips see link: