JR Tours

Teachers - Tips for Obtaining Approval

Okay, so you have decided once again to plan an exciting tour for your students but vowed that this year you are going to start early so that the kids have plenty of time to plan and save for the tour. As usual, however, there is one problem; you need Administration and School Board approval.

If your district is like most, obtaining approval can be simple once you know the ropes. By following these 4 steps, obtaining approval will no longer delay your planning.

1. Get Principal's Approval. After every student in the school raises their hands signaling they want to participate in a school trip, the first stop is the Principal's Office. It is important to get her on board early. She will usually assist you in picking dates and ensuring that there are no conflicts with the School calendar. While meetings with the Principal are generally relaxed and informal, you should make sure that you are well prepared. A strong presentation as to the goals and objectives of the tour will go a long way towards convincing the Principal that this is an educational experience that will have a very positive impact on your students and not an excuse to miss school.

2. Determine School Board Requirements. Now that your Principal is on board, she sends you off to obtain School Board approval. If you have never done this before, the first step should be a call to the School Board to find out any formal procedures you need to follow or papers that need to be submitted. The School Board secretary is usually the most helpful in this process.

3. Get on the Agenda. After you are comfortable with the process, you should immediately arrange to get on the Board agenda. This is the step most often overlooked by teachers and the one which causes undue delay in the planning process. Keep in mind that some Boards meet only once each month and require at least two weeks notice in order to get on the agenda. Starting early will still give you plenty of time to submit the required paperwork, overcome any stumbling blocks and still give your group ample opportunity to save and fundraise.

4. Prepare a Statement of Goals and Objectives. While some Boards will require you to be present at the meeting where the tour is discussed, others will simply require you to submit a formal proposal. Even it is not required, it is always a good idea to prepare for the Board a Statement of Goals. Since Junior Tours´┐Ż only plans and organizes educational tours to destinations with historical or cultural significance, determining the educational objective to a Junior Tour is easy. Also, preparing a Statement of Goals will help you focus at the Board meeting. If you need any assistance in this step, feel free to call our office. As always, our professional staff is prepared to assist your efforts. Most School Boards are very supportive of educational tours and will, in almost every instance, approve the tour. The trick is to start early and be prepared. Following the simple steps detailed here should make the process easy to manage. Good luck!