Question: What is the easiest way to run a hassle free school trip?

Answer: Don’t
It’s a very old joke. So old in fact it will barely raise a smile. But the fact is that something like 90% of schools still run school trips each year, and tens of thousands of us put ourselves through the hard work of organising and developing the trips, because of the good that we know it does for the pupils and students we teach.

Which is why, as a result of setting and running the School Visits news forum last year, I wanted to publish a book on school trips, covering everything that we had discussed.

And that’s what we have done. It is called Organising Successful Trips and Visits: a practical guide for secondary school teachers, and we’ve made it available as a download. In that way you can simply click on the link, and the file drops into the computer, ready for you to run off as many copies as you want for colleagues across the school.

The book covers all the basic points, from “loco parentis” to turning the idea into a trip, from transport issues to the letter to the parents, from staffing issues to kit lists.

In just over 50 pages it gives you all the basics – not least so that if a colleague in the school is looking to organise a trip for the first time, he/she will be able to read up on all the key issues presented in a straightforward way.

There are sample pages at

Organising Successful Trips and Visits: a practical guide for secondary school teachers” is published as a download so that you can receive immediately a copy onto your computer which you can print out for colleagues as often as you want. You can also put it on your school learning platform so all staff can access the document – and indeed you can make it part of the induction documentation for new members of staff.

You can obtain Organising Successful Trips and Visits: a practical guide for secondary school teachers” by going to

The price is £10 plus VAT (the VAT can be reclaimed in most cases by the school).

Organising Successful Trips and Visits: a practical guide for secondary school teachers” is published by First and Best in Education, part of the Hamilton House group. If you have any enquiries you can call 01536 399 011, or email or write to us at First and Best, Hamilton House, Earlstrees Ct., Earlstrees Rd., Corby, Northants NN17 4HH.

The full range of First and Best books can be seen at

First and Best in Education
Earlstrees Road
NN17 4HH


Write original school reports in minutes

As teachers we all want the reports we write to be meaningful and constructive. But with all the goodwill in the world, sometimes the demand of report writing can be a huge drain on both time and energy.

So, in order to make the task easier and less time-consuming, a group of teachers came together and created a Report Writer. This easy-to-use, on-line tool allows teachers to retain their own creativity in report writing but reduces the amount of time it takes to write a report by over 80%.

Better still, the Report Writer is available free of charge so that you can try it out for as long as you like – and use it as often as you like.

You can start using the system now at

Teach ICT Ltd
1Ffordd y Felin
SA62 5AX
01348 837241

Martin Luther King Jr used church money to pay for prostitutes and subsequently beat them

When you search for Martin Luther King on Google the first page of the results of the search lists a website which contains this story. The site claims to give a true historic examination of Martin Luther King and provides material for students to download for use in their studies.

If you delve a little deeper into the origins of the site in question you find it is hosted by a white supremacist group and appears to be a veiled attack on King’s reputation and the Civil Rights Movement in general.

Whether or not you are covering Martin Luther King with your students at the moment is not really relevant, nor is the truth or otherwise of this story. What is relevant is that it illustrates the difficulty of ensuring that your students can be sure that what they are using in their research is factually correct and accurate.

A recent study found that 48% of teachers had regular discussions (arguments) with their students on the accuracy of information presented in work that had been based on material obtained via the internet.

It is with this issue in mind that we developed Autology. Autology is an educational search engine, but contains so much more. All content is verified and mapped to the curriculum allowing students to find the information they want, with the added guarantee that what they are finding is quality information.

Autology contains many resources for AS and A level from leading publishers. This includes 118 text books from Heinemann, 123 text books from Letts & Lonsdale, 9 Encyclopaedias from World Book, over 1,000 educational websites indexed to the curriculum, plus the content from regional learning grids.

As a result students still use the same amount of time as before, but now that time is focussed on retrieving and using high quality information.

To see how Autology works a free trial is available by clicking here.

Alternatively, to talk through any aspect of our service please call 01244 560966 or email

You can also view the product at

Autology is provided by Autology World Ltd, Daresbury Innovation Centre, Science & Innovation Campus, Keckwick Lane, Daresbury, Cheshire, WA4 4FS