Educational Field Trips
Educational field trips are allowed when they consist of approved, planned instructional activities that involve students in learning experiences that are difficult to duplicate in a classroom situation. These field trips must support Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), must be reasonable in cost, and must be necessary to accomplish the objectives of the Texas ACE program. The Texas ACE Activity Worksheets are useful tools when planning educational field trips as they help document the alignment of the field trip with program goals.
All field trips using grant funds will require pre-approval from TEA. If the field trip does NOT relate to the below pre-approved activities, then you must submit a field trip request using a form found by CLICKING HERE. You must then email the form to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Examples of Pre-Approved and Appropriate Educational Field Trips:
- Supplemental curricular academic activities focused on math, science, and technology, such as service learning, internships, or science and technology fairs
- Laboratory and field investigation instruction, used to improve students’ understanding of science TEKS objectives
- Educational tours and interactive activities with local science centers, museums, zoos, horticultural centers, archaeological sites, or nature preserves
- Time at public libraries to increase access to high-interest reading materials and research tools
- Visits to colleges and universities to encourage interest in the pursuit of higher education
Reminder on Unallowable Costs Related to Field Trips:
- Field trips that are not reasonable in cost or are not necessary to accomplish the objectives of the grant program
- Field trips for social, entertainment, or recreational purposes
- Field trips that supplant and do not supplement local, state, or federal expenditures or activities
- Field trips that are not aligned with TEKS or that do not meet the instructional objectives of the grant program
- Field trips that are not properly documented (as described in the SAS Program Guidelines)
- Field trips to entertainment or recreational locations that have legitimate educational programs when more than 25 percent of the time spent at the location is used for entertainment or recreation of field trip participants
You must follow all applicable local, state, and federal travel requirements, whichever are most restrictive. If the field trip is listed as an example of a pre-approved field trip outlined above, be sure to maintain documentation of the field trip and must provide clear evidence of how the expense ties back to an instructional objective. Please note that food costs are not allowed on field trips and therefore grantees must leverage their use of other funding sources that do allow for these types of costs.
It is also important to think creatively about field trips and use technology to take students and families to out of reach locations via the internet. Grantees have taken their participants on Virtual or Electronic Field trips such as:
- college/university tours;
- explorations of wildlife in the Rain Forest;
- traveling through History with a walking tour of the U.S. Constitution and Museums; and
- space tours.
CLICK HERE FOR THE ONLINE FIELD TRIP REQUEST FORM