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Adult participants in outdoor education - New guidance
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Adult participants in outdoor education - New guidance

New OEAP guidance now available

New adult participants in outdoor education Guidance now available

When working with adults during offsite, learning outside the classroom and other such activities, employers, establishments and leaders are bound by many of the same legal requirements as when they are working with children, states the new OEAP NG document 4.3h Adult Participants. 


Although OEAP National Guidance is in general written with children and young people under the age of 18 in mind, most of its advice about good practice is also applicable to work with adults.


This document, which is free to download, will be particularly useful for EVCs, heads and managers, outdoor education advisers and visit leaders.

“When you are working with adult participants, you should interpret advice in OEAP National Guidance about providing information to parents, or obtaining information from them, as being about doing this with the adult participants themselves” says the Guidance.

The importance of a code of conduct

It can be at least as important to agree a code of conduct with adult participants as it is with under-18s. Depending upon the nature of the group, issues such as alcohol, smoking, sexual relationships, foul language, behaviour around participants who are under 18, and compliance with leader requests may need to be addressed.

Although you may not need to obtain adults’ consent to participate in visits, as they can choose for themselves whether or not to do so, you should consider whether you need to ask for their consent or agreement to specific matters.

“It is not necessary, and not legally allowed, to obtain a DBS check on adults who are simply participating in a visit alongside under-18s. Any safeguarding concerns should be addressed through supervision.”

The document includes information regarding:

- Information and consent

- Young adults

- Behaviour and supervision

- Groups with both adult and younger participants

- Vulnerable adults.


This document is is part of Section 4 Good Practice which contains a range of documents that provide guidance for employers, establishments and visit leaders about how to manage and deliver high quality outdoor learning, off-site visits and Learning Outside the Classroom.

These downloads also contain direct links a variety of other supporting OEAP National Guidance documents.

Download OEAP National Guidance document 4.3h Adult Participants

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