Caledonia is a specialist tour operator and has been operating school study trips abroad since 1998. We take great care when selecting our overseas schools and guarantee the highest professional standards and working practices in the following ways:
- We only work with professionally accredited language schools with a track record in providing courses for younger students
- We personally visit our overseas schools regularly, not only to guarantee the quality of their service and facilities but also to familiarise ourselves with the location and staff who will be managing school group trips
- Where legislation permits us to do so, we will provide authorised police checks for all adults in the homestay accommodation
Our overseas schools comply with all local, regional and national legislation regarding the safety and wellbeing of junior students at their centres. As such, they are fully accredited, professionally recognised educational centres, and most have been hosting school groups for many years.
We have a long standing relationship with our schools and their professional approach for the selection, inspection and approval of homestay accommodation is excellent. Minimum expectations include the following:
- All homestays provide a comfortable, clean and safe environment for students.
- Hosts should facilitate the students’ integration in the home and encourage them to speak Spanish as much as possible.
- Hosts should involve students as much as possible in family life, and students should have the impression of being part of the family.
- Hosts should provide appropriate facilities and meals and ensure the welfare and safety of their guests, and that they understand and respect the curfew given.
What is the process for selecting homestays?
- Potential hosts are initially invited to an in-depth interview to find out if they and their home would provide a suitable environment for students
- If our representative deems that they are potentially suitable, they would then ask them to complete a form and they would be given the terms and conditions, as well as the information about what the school would expect from homestay hosts.
- A visit to the hosts’ home is then arranged where our local housing officer would inspect the home to ensure it is suitable and meets our high standards and to ensure that there is a welcoming and safe environment.
- Hosts are then asked to sign a contract confirming that no members of their family have been found guilty of any criminal offence
- Homestays are inspected regularly by our local representative
- In the case of school groups, students will be allocated to homestays in pairs or groups of 3, taking any medical conditions/allergies/dietary requirements into consideration. The school will try to ensure that all students are placed in homestays close to each other where possible.
Our code of conduct for school group homestay accommodation
We expect homestay hosts to:
- provide a welcoming and safe environment for our students
- provide adequate and nutritious meals in accordance with the confirmed itinerary
- provide one bed (not a campbed or equivalent) for each visiting student with linen and towels provided
- guarantee sufficient space and facilities for study/homework in the accommodation
- provide daily opportunities to chat with the visiting student in the language being studied, eg. over meals, in the evenings and at weekends
- comply with the restrictions imposed by the group leaders regarding going out in the evening
- contact the school immediately if the students arrive back later than the agreed evening curfew time
- ensure that the students are not exposed to any illegal or indecent situations eg. inappropriate clothing worn by members of the family in the home
- ensure that the students are not offered any alcohol or cigarettes in the home
- guarantee that the students welfare and wellbeing will be at the forefront throughout their stay