School Children Visits to an Apiary

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La Folie 

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I have been asked to host visits by schoolchildren to the apiary I manage. The hives belong to a Country Park Volunteers group and are sited on a council-owned country park (in a secure area away from public interference). Insurance-wise I am covered by my membership of my local beekeeping society and BBKA. Also the local council insurance would cover such events. However, I think that parent/guardians should agree to allowing their children to visit an apiary and was wondering what others thought and if anyone had done something similar and had a suitably worded parental agreement form?

I should also say that all visitors will be correctly suited and booted
 

Nannysbees 

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I have been asked to host visits by schoolchildren to the apiary I manage. The hives belong to a Country Park Volunteers group and are sited on a council-owned country park (in a secure area away from public interference). Insurance-wise I am covered by my membership of my local beekeeping society and BBKA. Also the local council insurance would cover such events. However, I think that parent/guardians should agree to allowing their children to visit an apiary and was wondering what others thought and if anyone had done something similar and had a suitably worded parental agreement form?

I should also say that all visitors will be correctly suited and booted
How old are the children,?
 

Mint Bee 

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The children are, I believe, primary school age
find out which school years are visiting. Primary school runs from 4/5 to 11/12 years of age. Big difference in clothing and supervision requirements and you will need to tailor delivery of information to the age group.
 

Erichalfbee 

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I have been asked to host visits by schoolchildren to the apiary I manage. The hives belong to a Country Park Volunteers group and are sited on a council-owned country park (in a secure area away from public interference). Insurance-wise I am covered by my membership of my local beekeeping society and BBKA. Also the local council insurance would cover such events. However, I think that parent/guardians should agree to allowing their children to visit an apiary and was wondering what others thought and if anyone had done something similar and had a suitably worded parental agreement form?

I should also say that all visitors will be correctly suited and booted
There's a school in Kendal that runs its own beekeeping club very successfully. You could try messaging them for tips.
https://twitter.com/beekeepingkids?s=20
 

0bee-1 

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I suppose it also depends on what you intend to do with the group? Open a hive?
Suggest an observation hive a better option if available.
risk assessment def required - inc what to do if something goes wrong! location of local hospital ....
those with known allergic reactions to have an epi pen? (perhaps?)
need to check insurances - what and who is covered by what? who would be liable in the event of an accident?
dont think BBKA insurance covers running events?

also check with the school and country park who is actually organising the event? if not your apiary then is I suggest its the Country Park who is the responsible body. Need to confirm this. i think you have been asked to lead an event so in effect a 'contractor'.
PPE required will they need bee suits? are there enough?

school should be responsible for group behaviour and aware/managing child issues like allergies etc..
At no time should you or a volunteer be left alone with children - safe guarding issue and DBS checks would def be required!

you should be able to insist on the size of the group and spilt in to manageable number too say group of six for example. there are legal requirements for adult pupil ratio for school groups but extra help wise... say an assistant beekeeper on hand.

would also ask what are the bees in the apiary like? gentle bees or a bit defensive? worth knowing (which hive to avoid!) and also being aware of weather conditions that might affect temperament !

i have gone into schools... kids loved putting the bees suit on and fascinated handling pieces of wax comb. Also loved watching me light a smoker and then letting them puff the smoke out - with tasting honey at the end... bought a cheap pack of wooden teaspoons. children loved having a dip and i was surprised how many had never eaten honey😮☹ so worth asking that!

great thing to do but plan well and make sure you are not personally liable for any mishap.;)🐝🐝
Steve
 
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PeaBee 

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I would have thought it is important for you and the school to check who is covered and responsible for what. The school should as part of its assessment check that providers (you) have adequate insurance and risk assessments and controls in place.
 

Ian123 

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Bee tunnel may be easier…..https://beekeepingforum.co.uk/threads/bee-tunnel.50357/
 
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If you look on the BBKA website under 'junior beekeeping' there's loads of stuff including a model risk assessment in the section that talks about schools keeping bees, you might be able to modify it. There's also a section about schools visiting the BBKA with a projected timetable. You should be able to copy it or at least base your setting on theirs.

Also I would expect that anyone working with the children will need a CRB (or whatever it's called this month ) check before hand.
 

The Poot 

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As usual, enough codswallop to turn a nice idea into a legal minefield and encourage you to not bother, thus contributing to the dumbing down of young people.
 

Gilberdyke John 

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I have been asked to host visits by schoolchildren to the apiary I manage. The hives belong to a Country Park Volunteers group and are sited on a council-owned country park (in a secure area away from public interference). Insurance-wise I am covered by my membership of my local beekeeping society and BBKA. Also the local council insurance would cover such events. However, I think that parent/guardians should agree to allowing their children to visit an apiary and was wondering what others thought and if anyone had done something similar and had a suitably worded parental agreement form?

I should also say that all visitors will be correctly suited and booted
Selby beekeeping association have a public friendly facility located in the town cemetery. You might like to take a look at their website.
 

La Folie 

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Thank you all for your replies. I have checked that the activity would be covered by the Council's insurance, which it will be. I am planning on 6 childrens' bee suits plus one adult for a teacher. The Risk Assessment will be carried out. I agree that an observation hive would be best, but I don't have one so it will be opening one of my gentler hives and bringing a frame for observation. Lots to think about
 

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