26th March 2021

School visits to outdoor education centres set to resume

Written by Jack Nicholl

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The Plas y Brenin team welcomes today’s update from the Department of Education for England that school visits to outdoor education centres are to resume.

As a national outdoor centre, every year we host several school groups who visit us from across the UK. We are delighted that English schools can now plan to return to us this summer and look forward to similar clarity very soon for schools in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

The guidance announced sets out a clear timetable for English schools to resume day trips and residential stays:

  • Schools can reintroduce outdoor learning and single-day educational visits from Step 2 in the government’s roadmap for England (no earlier than April 12th).
  • Schools can reintroduce domestic residential trips from Step 3 in the government’s roadmap for England (no earlier than May 17th).

Ruth Hall, CEO at Plas y Brenin, said:

“This news is a relief for our team and for our many peers in the sector, which has been under threat over the past year.

“Outdoor learning provides multiple benefits to young people’s health and wellbeing, including stimulating curiosity, building resilience and developing an appreciation of the world around them, as well as enhancing social, emotional and environmental awareness. These benefits will be vital to the UK’s recovery from the pandemic, and we cannot wait to welcome back residential school trips.”

Helen Barnard, Chief Instructor at Plas y Brenin, said:

“Outdoor learning includes dynamic models of learning that allow young people to plan and take ownership of a range of different outdoor activities; as well as reflection sessions that enable young people to take the learning away and apply it into other areas of their education and home life.

“The outdoors is proven to develop resilience, resourcefulness and the ability to work in a team and independently. It challenges people young and old to develop their abilities and enhance their development through safe and stimulating adventurous experiences.

“Our experienced team knows that behaviours established and skills learned through early years in the outdoors establish benefits that carry on through entire lifetimes.”

To discuss Plas y Brenin’s offering for schools and other educational organisations, please contact Owen Senior.