16th May 2008 at 01:00
Pupils are increasingly missing our lessons in order to go on trips during the school day, organised by other departments
Pupils are increasingly missing our lessons in order to go on trips during the school day, organised by other departments. Our subject rarely takes pupils away from other areas. Am I unreasonable to object to this constant disruption to the curriculum?

Colin, Coventry

A: One of the often hidden costs of trips is the knock-on effects on other parts of the curriculum - and all that you are doing is raising this.

Of course, you'll have to put up with the inevitable snipes about being a killjoy, but this goes with the territory. It shouldn't be beyond the wit of senior staff to co-ordinate away days effectively to minimise disruption. But it may well be that you, as a school, simply have to grasp the nettle and cut down the number. Just don't expect to be popular.

Graham, Crowborough

A: Your position on the issue of trips is entirely reasonable from where you stand, but entirely unreasonable from where your colleagues (who organise them) stand. As with many timetabling issues, planning and consultation is the key. A compromise can be zoning certain parts of the academic year as non-trip times and loading up trips to coincide, thus minimising days lost.

Rod, Middlesex

A: You are being unreasonable. Out-of-school educational visits can provide inspirational and memorable experiences for many pupils, especially predominantly kinaesthetic learners, who tire of sitting in classrooms day after day.

These visits enliven the curriculum and give it relevance. Why not introduce some into your subject area to accommodate pupils' needs, instead of worrying about disrupting your routine?

John, Cumbria


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