IOL Cymru/ Wales

Senedd Cymru - Welsh Senedd Engagement

Senedd votes 25-26 against the Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill on 18th April 2024

On 18th April Members of the Senedd rejected calls to establish a legal requirement for residential outdoor education opportunities for children and young people in Wales’s schools.

The Senedd narrowly voted against the general principles of the Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill which was introduced by the Conservatives’ MS Sam Rowlands.

MS Sam Rowlands made the argument that outdoor education residentials are valued by children, parents and teachers alike, yet, for those without the means to access them, they are, in fact, unattainable. He explained that this Bill sets out a way to remove those financial barriers to participating in what can be life-changing experiences.

Concerns were raised about the additional pressures this legislation would place on school budgets and staff,  there would be required changes to teachers’ employment terms and conditions which might hamper recruitment and retention, competing priorities, and also the capacity of the outdoor education sector to meet the Bill’s requirements,

The IOL Representative to the Welsh Government, Graham French writes, ‘The vote was close, and we have already started working with the Department for Education in Cardiff on the non-legislative changes and support that can be offered by the Welsh Government – and we have received some very positive support already'.

So, whilst the Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill, and hence legislative journey might be over, we’re still in a much stronger position.  In the debate on the Bill, so many members offered supported for Outdoor Learning , and the new Education Minister, Lynne Neagle,  also offered further collaboration.’

Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill

Read the Residential Outdoor Education (Wales) Bill

Senedd Wales Meeting Documents
14/12/2023 Senedd Cross Party Group Meeting 13/03/2024 Senedd Cross Party Group Meeting

IOL Supports this call as a signatory.

Will Wales lead the way in granting every young person an outdoor education? An open letter to the First Minister of Wales, Vaughan Gething MS. Let's not let this opportunity slip through our fingers.

Martin Davidson

The Outward Bound Trust

Open Letter - Outward Bound, Martin Davidson, Will Wales Lead the Way WELSH Open Letter - Outward Bound, Martin Davidson, Will Wales Lead the Way ENGLISH
The Senedd debate was postponed to the 8th May, read more here...


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