Following a successful judging day held in London, five finalists have been selected for this year’s ‘My Best School Trip’ Award.

My Best School Trip Award

The judging team whittled the entries down to a shortlist of ten which were then considered by a panel of experts. 

After studying the entries and discussing them in depth, the panel have picked five finalists. The winner of the award will be revealed at the School Travel Awards lunch and ceremony on 9th November at Royal Garden Hotel in London.

You can buy tickets for the event here

The judging panel consisted of Elaine Skates from the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, Gill Harvey, CEO of the School Travel Forum, Peter Carne, OBE, Learning Away National Adviser, and Rob Yandell and Keeley Rodgers from School Travel Organiser magazine. 

My Best School Trip Finalists:

Blue Bell Hill Primary School, Nottingham, Key Stage 2 trip to Castleton

Blue Bell Hill Primary School

Teacher Lynne Crooks: During the stay the children got to experience the great outdoors through walking, playing in mud, and exploring the countryside. At Castleton the pupils were able to put their Forest School skills to the test in the countryside.

Carisbrooke College, Isle of Wight, Key Stage 4 trip to the USA 

Carisbrooke College

Teacher Phil Jones: This cross-curricular trip involved visits to the Empire State Building, Washington DC, New York and the 911 memorial museum. Pupils were also taken to see a Broadway show during the visit. Visiting after Donald trump became President, students were able to recognise the effects of politics in the country.

Pendle Community School, Lancashire, Key Stage 3 and 4 trip to Lithuania 

Pendle Community School

Teacher Helen Willett: This trip to Lithuania allowed pupils to visit a European school and learn more about the culture. Pupils were prepared by researching the country and then participating in a Modern Foreign Language day which focussed on the culture of Lithuania and other partners.

St Wilfrid’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Yorkshire, Key Stage 2 trip to the Danelaw Centre for Living History

St Wilfrid's

Teacher Joanne Martin: The centre is divided into different historical periods: Stone Age, Romans, Vikings, Celts and even World War 2. The pupils spent a day in costume and in recreated historical areas to fully immerse themselves in the History curriculum. This trip also tied into the Literacy curriculum and pupils were asked to write stories from what they had learnt at the centre.

Upland Primary School, Bexleyheath, London, Key Stage 2 trip to the Outward Bound Centre

Upland Primary School

Teacher Alex Langley: A trip to the Outward Bound Centre allowed pupils to appreciate the landscape that contrasted so vividly with their urban lifestyles back home in Bexleyheath. The trip promoted resilience, teamwork, self-reflection, determination, kindness and appreciation of nature. They learnt how to take on physical tasks such as hiking up one of the Cumbrian mountains as well as mental challenges such as crawling through small, dark tunnels underground.

A few words from the judges…

“Thank you to School Travel Organiser for arranging the judging for this wonderful competition. It was such an interesting day and the school trips we’ve been looking at include interesting, fantastic residentials and days trips as well. So just wait for the winner.” - Gill Harvey, CEO of the School Travel Forum

“It’s been so wonderful to be involved in judging the awards again this year. It’s always a joy to read about the fantastic things that are going on in schools and it makes me realise why learning outside the classroom and brilliant residentials are so important.” - Peter Carne, OBE, Learning Away National Adviser

“We’ve seen some examples of some excellent practice in schools, and it’s clear from all the entries that it doesn’t matter what type of trip the schools have provided, all of them have had massive impacts on the pupils involved.” - Elaine Skates, chief executive of the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom

“The standard of this year’s entries has been incredibly high and it was a tough job selecting the five finalists. I can’t wait to reveal the winner and celebrate with the finalists on the 9th November” – Keeley Rodgers, editor of School Travel Organiser magazine

“Studying the entries, you can’t help but be inspired by both the teachers and the pupils. The way in which the children reviewed their school trips often raised a smile, giving a lovely insight into how they benefitted from learning outside the classroom.” – Rob Yandell, publisher of School Travel Organiser