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The Institute's Work

The Institute's Approach

The Institute works to ensure the voice of outdoor learning is heard and valued across the UK. This takes many forms including: submitting evidence to government enquiries; providing comment and articles to national and regional press; advising regulatory bodies, policy makers and large scale commissioners of service and working with key stakeholders such as landowners, funders and business service providers.

We work in partnership with other organisations in the sector to ensure a more powerful and consistent voice. We make direct comment submitting evidence to government enquiries and provide articles to national and regional press as well as supporting our partners to strengthen their voice in the sector.









English Outdoor Council






Keeping Up To Date and Direct Influencing

The Institute seeks to provide opportunities for members to influence direct as well as speaking on your behalf. IOL News, member newsletter and direct emails are used to invite members to respond to consultations. Working for you - the quarterly IOL Insights section in our professional magazine, Horizons, reports on recent activity.

As an outdoor learning provider you are encouraged to develop a direct influencing relationship with your own MP. Many outdoor learning activities provide excellent opportunities for MP’s to engage with young people and community groups in dynamic surroundings.


Influence your MP direct

How do I find out more about and contact my MP?


Open Consultations


Closed Consultations


QFQUAL consultation : Closes 28th May 2021

OFQUAL are seeking views on their proposal to carry forward the changes agreed for summer 2021 to Summer 2022 for some subjects to take account of any public health restrictions relating to coronavirus (COVID-19) that might be in place during the next academic year.

This consultation covers: fieldwork activities in geography, geology and environmental science.


Contribute to the ENOS survey on the outdoor sector in Europe! | European network of outdoor sports

The European Network of Outdoor Sports (ENOS) has decided to launch a survey of outdoor sport stakeholders across Europe. The ambition is to have an overview of the organisation of outdoor sports in each country and to better understand the outdoor sports sector in Europe.


Review of AALA and development of a sector led inspection regime

Date : 01/11/2018 Meeting with the Minister of State for disabled people, Sarah Newton MP

The Minister has confirmed her support for the HSE Board’s decision to pursue Option 3. HSE will continue to engage with the Devolved Governments and stakeholders throughout this process. The AALA team thank you for your patience and remind stakeholders that the final decision rests with Parliament and it will take a number of years before we reach a conclusion.

Latest Updates :

Join the UK Outdoor Learning, Sector Strategic Forum 3rd Oct 2019 to discuss the latest updates on Safety, Inspection and post AALA licensing.


Beyond Recycling - Making the circular economy a reality in Wales : Closing date 3rd April 2020

The Welsh Government are consulting on proposals that they:

  • Move towards zero waste by 2050
  • Scrutinise how we use resources
  • Encourage the reuse, repair and remanufacture products and materials
  • Maximise the economic and social opportunities of a more circular economy


Draft Keeping Learners Safe guidance. Closing date : 7th November 2019

The Cymru/Welsh government are consulting on draft guidance which includes;

  • An overview of current policies to safeguard those in education
  • Greater clarity on the specific duties placed on schools and colleges, and how they should be adopted by other education settings
  • A safeguarding audit tool to support education settings to review their safeguarding arrangements


Structure for Welsh apprenticeship frameworks. Closing date : 9th Dec 2019

This consultation seeks views on the future architecture of apprenticeship frameworks in Wales, linked to occupational sectors and pathways to ensure the quality, processes, governance and criteria of apprenticeship framework development is transparent, consistent and fit for purpose.


National Office for Statistics (ONS) - Outdoor Learning habitats usage. Closing date : 31st December 2019

National Office for Statistics (ONS) is looking for data on Outdoor Education visits for their work on Natural Capital Cultural Services. The information on Outdoor Learning visits has previously NOT been included and they are keen to collect data on visits, time spent and expenditure in the various habitats in the UK. Please could you complete the questionnaire below and we will collate the information and send to the ONS.


Environmental accounts show how the environment contributes to the economy, the impacts that the economy has on the environment and how society responds to environmental issues.


Advancing our health: prevention in the 2020s in England. Closing date : 14th October 2019

This consultation is seeking your views on proposals to tackle the causes of preventable ill health in England. Our health is shaped by the environment in which we live, the choices we make, and the services we receive.

The Ministerial statement for the above consultation


Safeguarding children from child sexual exploitation. Closing date : 7th October 2019

The Welsh Government wants all children to be safe and have healthy relationships. They are updating their Child Sexual Exploitation guidance for those who work with children to:

  • identify and prevent abuse
  • protect children
  • meet the needs of children at risk of abuse


Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) - Where does Outdoor Learning fit? Closing date : 30th Sept 2019

What is the SOC-EXT project?

As our economy evolves and develops, so do the types of occupations and skills that are required. The Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) is a recognised framework that enables all UK occupations to be classified according to skill level and specialisation. This classification is, in turn, essential in the creation of the occupational and social statistics that inform policy and the public.

More recently, some people and organisations who use SOC have expressed a need for a greater level of detail than is currently available. In response to this, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) is working with The University of Warwick’s Institute for Employment Research (IER) to launch a stakeholder engagement exercise exploring the level and nature of requirements.

For now, the work remains exploratory and there are currently no plans to publish statistics to this level. However, we want to try and ensure as many occupations are represented as possible within the extended framework.

Why we want to engage with you

No one knows your profession better that you. We need your expert knowledge about jobs in your sector to make this project a success and ensure you are recognised.

Your insight will play a crucial role in the development of the framework, helping to future proof our economy and your sector. As well as ensuring that roles and responsibilities within your profession continue to be correctly represented, your input will help us in the identification of skills gaps and training needs to ensure future growth in an ever-evolving labour market.

  • You can share your views by completing the online survey here
  • More information relating to the project can be accessed here
  • You can contact the project team directly by emailing

This project could help shape the workforce of the future… don’t miss your chance to be involved!


Character and resilience, a call for evidence - Closes 5th July 2019

Education Secretary: “Character and resilience are key to social mobility”

Having a go at new activities and learning from failure will boost children’s character and resilience, the Education Secretary has said today. A new advisory group of experts in character ...

This call for evidence seeks views on the importance of character and resilience in young people. It welcomes examples of good practice in developing character in pupils in schools, colleges and other educational settings.

Responses will be used to help the advisory group further refine their thinking in relation to the development of character in children and young people.

(Link to consultation)


Draft Curriculum for Wales 2022 - Closes 9th July 2019

Draft Curriculum for Wales 2022. Designed by teachers. Built for children. The new curriculum is now available for feedback. This is your chance to get to know the new curriculum and make your contribution.

(Link to consultation)


Have your say. We have been working with education and childcare professionals, and other experts to develop a new approach to the curriculum. Together we have developed guidance which will help funded non-maintained settings and schools create a new curriculum for their learners.

(Link to Have Your Say)




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