Safety first, but all life is a risk

2nd April 2004 at 01:00
I agree with Jenny Cooper's letter (TES, March 19) - one fatality is one too many and each one is a tragedy. The Professional Association of Teachers has had to support members who have had the same dreadful experiences.

My point was (TES, March 5) that no area of life is risk-free but the risk of an accident on a school trip is very small and certainly much less than on many other activities children participate in every day.

If some people think that we should stop school trips because of a small number of accidents (in the context of thousands of school trips or millions of individual pupil visits), should we follow that logic through and ban cars because hundreds of children a year are killed in road accidents?

While we must strive to improve safety we should be careful about calling for an activity to be stopped, especially when the benefits of trips are so great.

PAT members voted in favour of school trips at their 2001 conference. I am glad that Ms Cooper and I can agree that "safely conducted and properly supervised school trips are an important part of education".

Jean Gemmell General secretary, PAT Friar Gate, Derby

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today