Decline of the outdoors

22nd October 2004 at 01:00
* The number of biology groups visiting Field Studies Council centres has dropped by more than a quarter over the past 20 years to 489. The number of visits by geography groups increased slightly to 620, but the length of visits shortened.

* Fewer than one in 20 secondary pupils has gone on a residential school trip.

* Teachers surveyed by the FSC last year said the issues which had affected outdoor education were: curriculum pressure (63 per cent), cost of courses (47 per cent), reduced fieldwork in the curriculum (44 per cent), timetable problems (42 per cent), getting supply cover(41 per cent), health and safety reasons (14 per cent) and unwilling studentsparents(13 per cent).

* Most pupils and teachers surveyed by the FSC this year could not recognise more than two out of 10 common plants.

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