Student Travel Policy
Administrator Approval of Travel
The Student Travel and Tours policy shall be administered according to the following guidelines:
School Principal Approval
Principals shall be responsible for coordinating development of student activity and travel plans according to the following criteria:
Distance of Travel
Whenever possible, student activities shall be scheduled in close proximity to the local school and the need for long distance or overnight travel avoided.
Overnight Travel—Elementary and Middle Schools
Overnight travel shall not be included as part of the elementary and middle school educational program. Learning experiences away from the local school shall be provided by field trips during the school day.
Overnight Travel—High School and Activities Association
Overnight travel may be part of the educational program for high school students when the travel is for an activity sponsored by the Utah High School Activities Association, a state or nationally affiliated educational organization, or an approved school program.
Overnight Travel—High School Sponsor
Overnight travel may be part of the educational program for high school students when the anticipated educational benefits warrant the required expenditures, comparable experiences are not available at the local school, and the travel costs will not burden families unduly.
Abiding by High School Activities Association Rules
Schools shall abide by the regulations governing intrastate competitions outlined in the Utah High School Activities Association bylaws.
Limit to Travel Time
Each school shall be limited to a total of overnight travel experiences during the academic year where such travel necessitates missing days of school. No such experience shall cause a student to miss more then two (2) days of school. (Special circumstances requiring additional days from school for valid educational purposes may be appealed to the Board of Education.)
Student Organization Travel
Student organizations shall be limited to one overnight travel experience per year. An exception may be granted for up to eight (8) elected student leaders in each applied technology organization if in the principal’s judgment it is deemed essential to the successful completion of their program. (Note: Exemptions granted for leaders in applied technology programs need not be counted in the fifteen (15) total overnight travel experiences.) An exception may also be granted to an individual student or group of students if winning at the local, state or national level provides an invitation to compete at the next level of competition sponsored by the same organization or entity. Such competition at the next level shall not count against the fifteen (15) activities allowed per school, neither the one activity per organization nor the two (2) allowable days missed from school.
Supervision for student travel must be provided at a ratio of one (1) responsible adult per fifteen (15) students. Supervisors shall be primarily advisors and parents.
Payment of Travel Expenses
All expenses associated with the trip must be paid by the participants themselves, covered by fund raising, or financed by vocational or other state or federal monies provided expressly for the activity. School student body funds may not be used. All funds must be received prior to travel or expenditure of funds for such travel.
Transportation shall be by commercial carrier, or by School District Transportation services, for all overnight travel. No private aircraft may be used for student travel. Ground transportation guidelines are as follows:
- Only those commercial carriers licensed to operate in Utah shall be used.
- School District buses may be used in the following circumstances:
- the trip is to take place when school is not in session.
- the travel is to be within the state.
- the request for service is submitted at least one month in advance.
- the request is approved by the Director of Transportation.
- No private vehicles may be used in overnight travel or school sponsored excursions which exceed 150 miles one way. Parents or legal guardians wishing to transport their own children, with the approval of the administration and/or the team coach/adviser, will not be under the jurisdiction of the School District.
- Commercially rented buses or other modes of ground transportation may be used upon arrival at destination. If the destination is over 150 miles one way, a commercial carrier, with a professional operator, must be utilized. Travel waivers of liability must be properly filled out and on file for all travel.
- Local student travel of less than 150 miles one way shall adhere to the following provisions:
- District bus transportation is the preferred method of transporting students. A parent/guardian must sign the school registration card which grants permission to his/her student to ride district buses.
- Use of private vehicles for school-related travel is strongly discouraged. If a private vehicle is used for student travel, the driver must be twenty-one (21) years of age or older and be free of convictions for alcohol or other substance abuse violations and must complete School District’s Vehicle Owner/Driver Waiver of Liability form (Disclaimer). The form must be filed with the school’s administration in advance.
- Upon the request of the parent/guardian, a student under age twenty-one (21) and at least sixteen (16) years of age or older, who chooses to use a private vehicle for travel to/from school activities must complete the following: the Passenger Waiver of Liability form, disclaimers contained within the School District Activity Release Form, obtain signatures by both the drive and each passenger(s) of the vehicle, and have the form signed by parent/guardian. This policy does not apply to travel by students to/from school from their homes.
- The driver/owner of the private vehicle must ensure the vehicle is covered by liability insurance and has passed the state-required safety inspection. The driver of the private vehicle and all passengers must complete the Waiver of Liability Form which must be on file in advance.
Requests for Travel
Requests for overnight travel shall be submitted to the superintendent or designee at least forty-five (45) days prior to the proposed trip. The request shall include:
- The name of the group requesting permission to travel.
- The objectives of the trip.
- The proposed destination, mode of travel, and number of students involved.
- The number of school days missed. (May not exceed two (2).)
- The estimated cost of the trip and mode of payment, including a summary of proposed fund raising activities and Fund Raising Authorization Forms.
- A list of advisors and adult supervisors.
- The principal’s signature of approval. (Cannot be a designee.)
Parental Notice and Approval
Once a travel request is approved by the appropriate administrator or Board of Education, a meeting shall be held at the school for parents of potential student participants. The principal or student advisor shall review the proposed travel itinerary, anticipated per student costs, and fund raising options. Parents shall be given the opportunity to approve or disapprove the proposed travel plan.
- If seventy-five (75) percent of the parents fail to approve the plan and do not grant written permission for their child to participate, plans for the trip shall be abandoned.
- If seventy-five (75) percent of the parents do approve of the plan and give written permission for their child to participate, the organization may proceed with further planning and fund raising.
Students who, for any reason, do not participate in activity travel shall not be penalized. Nonparticipation shall not impact grades or the student’s status in the class or organization.
Privately Sponsored Tours
Privately sponsored and commercial student tours:
- An employee must purchase advertising space to advertise an activity in a publication that accepts advertising, whether or not sponsored by schools in the school district or by the school district. Such publications include school newspapers, but not school newsletters. Unless the activity is sponsored by the school district, the advertisement shall state clearly that the activity is not sponsored by the school or school district.
- Employees affiliated with private tour agencies are prohibited from using students as a captive audience for soliciting tour participation.
- School facilities, supplies, and equipment may not be used for the purpose of advertising privately sponsored tour participants.
- Tour agencies may rent building space in accordance with Policy.
District schools shall not sponsor activity travel for post-graduate students such as graduation trips, music tours, etc.