Greenfield school board to revise international trip policy
GREENFIELD — The Greenfield School Committee will be reviewing the department’s international trip policy after they voted last week to spend an unplanned $1,700 for an upcoming trip to Spain.
The school board traditionally approves international trips months in advance (a trip this week to Quebec was approved last spring) but they voted last Wednesday on a trip that’s taking place over this coming April vacation.
Superintendent Susan Hollins said she supported teacher Tara Cloutier’s trip to Spain. But she told Cloutier that she needed another faculty member to accompany her to Spain to supervise eight students.
Students typically pay for their own travel expenses and travel companies allow adult chaperones to go for free.
But in this case, there were not enough students to warrant two free adults, Cloutier told the school board. To pay for the second adult supervisor, students would have had to each pay more or the school department would have to pay the additional $1,711.
The school board members voted to pay the expense, saying it would be unfair if the students had to pay more or if the trip was canceled altogether. But they said they would work to revise the department’s policy to set clear guidelines on how trips should be planned and approved with enough notice.
Cloutier told the board that she and French teacher Tamara Grogan would like to be included in rewriting the policy. Cloutier has taken Greenfield High School students on five trips to Spain and Grogan’s trip this week with students will be her ninth abroad.