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Application Form
  • There is a coherent approach to adventure activities/sports which fits into the overall school philosophy
  • Risk assessment is undertaken for every potential activity and appropriate control measures put in place
  • The program is managed and organised by appropriately qualified and experienced personnel
  • Staff roles and responsibilities are allocated and documented clearly
NOPASNA's duty to ensure the health and safety of participants in adventure sports is part of its general duty of care to students and employees.

The standard of care expected of staff who coach, train and manage any activity is necessarily high because of the element of risk involved, so that required of staff involved in adventure activities/sports, with a greater degree of risk, is considerably higher again. The greater the risk involved in an activity, the higher the standard of care required

The preparation and training for adventure activities/sports is such that those who eventually do participate will be able to know the risks and be prepared to deal with them if and when they arise, It is part of the duty of the organisation to care of those preparing participants for adventure sports to:
  • Be competent in the particular activity
  • Have skills in training
  • Have access to the most recent techniques
  • Be familiar with equipment and materials to be used
  • Know safety routines for emergencies
  • Be familiar with the site for the activity
  • Be able to analyse potential risks in a given activity

    * Licensing, certification and training
    For many*activities, instructors or supervisors are required to be licensed or certified, and there may be minimum requirements for participants. For example, scuba diving instructors must be fully trained and certified, and potential participants must have undergone minimum training activities. The organisation ensures relevant standards for an activity have been met.
    * Equipment
    Safety in an adventure activities/sport may also be heavily dependent on the reliability of equipment. All such equipment, including ropes, chains and buckles, must be tested and certified to standards.
    * Guidelines
    Organisation and staff who manage outdoor activities and adventure sports will ensure guidelines issued by the relevant Department, Organisation association or by the professional bodies associated with a particular sport.
    *Managing Adventure Sports
    in managing the risks to health and safety of participants in adventure sports offered through the NOPASNA, the Programme co-ordinator needs to ensure that:
    • Proper planning for the activity is done, including appropriate selection of competent supervisors and participants
    • The activity itself is conducted safely and without unnecessary risk
    • In the event of an incident or emergency, appropriate procedures are followed.
    * Supervisors and Instructors
    Only suitably qualified staff should be allowed to conduct a particular adventure sport. Where more than one staff member is involved, the levels of responsibility of each must be established and documented. At least one staff member must hold a first aid qualification. It may be necessary for a Organisation to use specialist external staff if there are not suitably qualified in-house staff available for a particular activity. When using external providers, the Organisation, through the staff member responsible for the activity, will undertake to:
    • Check the site to ensure that it is suitable for the intended participants
    • Know the staff who will be involved with the Participants, and check their qualifications
    • Check the equipment which will be used
    • Review levels of responsibility, roles and procedures with the external personnel
    • Ensure that the external providers know the program, its philosophy, practices and procedures.
    *Selection of Participants
    Because of the high-risk nature of adventure sports (and any associated expenses), it will not be appropriate for all students and staff to participate. The initial selection criteria for any activity must be clearly developed and communicated to intending participants. These criteria should be relevant to the activity and would include reference to:
    • Health matters
    • Fitness levels
    • Previous experience in similar activities
    • Potential to reach skill levels required
    • Cooperative temperament and ability to work in a team.
    As for any sporting activity, it may be necessary to conduct the activity at several levels beginner, intermediate, advanced where this is possible.
    * Consent forms and liability
    The consent of parents or guardians to a student's participation in an adventure activity/sport must be obtained, for each particular activity. The consent form can also be used to provide medical or other information about the student which may be relevant to the activity (for example, vertigo may not be relevant to most school activities but may affect a student's ability to participate in abseiling).

    Some schools have adopted the practice of attempting to exclude liability for injury to students when involved in a schoof-managed activity, it must be understood that consent forms do not provide indemnity for a school and will not prevent students or their parents/guardians from suing the school if students are injured during activities.