LIST: Field Trip Policies

Updated: 05/23/2013 5:47 PM KSTP.com By: Leslie Dyste



We checked in with some local schools and state organizations following the deadly gravel slide at Lilydale Regional Park.

Anoka-Hennepin School District

Mary Olson from Anoka-Hennepin schools says the district averages about 1,500 field trips per year.

Teachers and principals would make the decision to cancel a field trip and it is generally based on weather and safety.

Olson said she has checked with several people and they can't remember any accidents in the district's field trips. She has been with the district for 30 years.

The district does have parents sign waivers.

They are intended to let parents/guardians know what students are doing and get permission for students to participate in the activity, not to protect the district from liability.

When students are in our care on a field trip, we are responsible for them regardless of a parent/guardian signature on a form.

Click here to read the field trip permission form.

Minneapolis School District

The person who makes the call to cancel a planned field trip is the person who approved the field trip.

In the case of an overnight or out-of-state trip, the associate superintendent would approve the trip, so in that case the associate superintendent would cancel the trip.

Otherwise, the principal approves the trips so the principal would cancel the trips.

The district requires consent forms for field trips.

Minnetonka School District

Minnetonka schools does not generate summary reports on the number of field trips taken in a year. That is not a report required by the state. The best estimate is 3 to 5 field trips per child during a school year.

The district says there are eight incident/injury reports form field trips this year:

The district requires parent permission for field trips outside of the school. 

Designated members of the school staff are trained in first aid; however, first aid is not a job requirement for all staff.

At the start of each school year, families are offered third-party student insurance for accidents at school or during school-related activities.

In the event a student was injured or in an accident, personal health insurance would apply.  The School District maintains appropriate insurances to protect itself and our taxpayers against liability for other types of accidental situations.

Cancellation of a field trip would be the responsibility of the school principal, in consultation with the Superintendent.

Wayzata Public Schools

Amy Parnell, Director of Communications says the number of field trips vary by school and by grade level. Decisions about whether or not to cancel a field trip are usually made by teachers working with their principal. 

Reasons for canceling field trips are typically weather related, cost, etc. The district has, "thankfully have not experienced any major injuries while on field trips."

Parents typically sign a permission form and they don't have a policy specifically for field trips. 

However, there is a policy for overnight travel.

Fridley School District

The principal of the school makes the call as to whether a field trip should be canceled. If a planned field trip must be canceled, the school’s principal will make that call.

A decision to cancel a field trip is usually prompted by poor weather and any other condition/situation that may jeopardize student safety.

The district says it has excellent policies and guidelines in place, so they are not reconsidering field trip policies at this time.

Parents are required to grant permission each field trip that they would like their child to participate in. They must also authorize emergency medical treatment in case of an emergency during the field trip. 

The parent permission forms are the same although the district has one for local travel and a different one for overnight field trips.

The district provides CPR and first aid training to staff.

The U.S. State Dept. on School Field Trips

In case of an accident during a field trip appropriate procedures should be in place to deal with such an event.

All faculty members in charge of field trips should be trained in first aid. They should also have emergency numbers available and make appropriate calls so any injured students can be cared for.

The faculty member should document the accident with the assistance of the local authorities if necessary. A formal accident report will need to be submitted upon arrival back at the school.

The faculty member should alert the school so the school can take appropriate action on the home front. This would be alerting the parents, appropriate administrators, board members, etc.

Minnesota Department of Education

In case of an accident during a field trip appropriate procedures should be in place to deal with such an event.

All faculty members in charge of field trips should be trained in first aid. They should also have emergency numbers available and make appropriate calls so any injured students can be cared for.

The faculty member should document the accident with the assistance of the local authorities if necessary. A formal accident report will need to be submitted upon arrival back at the school.

The faculty member should alert the school so the school can take appropriate action on the home front. This would be alerting the parents, appropriate administrators, board members, etc.

Minnesota Association of School Administration

Gary Amoroso says Minnesota Association of School Administrators (MASA) Districts usually have a field trip policy that they follow. 

Districts create policies that they believe are in the best interest of their school community.  Yesterdays events were tragic. 

A situation like this will cause you to potentially reassess your practice. You weigh the value of the experience when determining if it is a trip worth exposing students to.

More Field Trip Sample Waivers

Click here to view an example of a field trip waiver for the University of Minnesota.

Click here to view an example of a field trip waiver from Inver Grove Heights.

Click here to view an example of a field trip waiver from South Washington County schools.