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School trips: the inclusivity issue

Teachers may exclude children dealing with various illnesses or challenges from excursions ‘for their own good’, but these are the young people who need them the most, argues Alex Yates

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Last summer, we sent a group of Year 10 and 11 pupils on an Outward Bound trip to Aberdovey in Wales. Nothing too unusual about that, except that the group sitting on the bus was made up of pupils with anorexia, anxiety disorders, post-psychosis and depression.

For many professionals, the idea of taking such a vulnerable group of pupils on a week’s Outward Bound course would seem foolhardy and destined to fail, so why bother taking the risk?

Young people with mental health challenges (we prefer the term “challenges” to “problems”) often feel helpless in the face of their difficulties. This ...

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