As previously mentioned, our president Reet Escribano is the lead of the InterParents school trips working group and one of the InterParents delegates to OSG School trips WG. At the beginning of March, InterParents School trips WG sent a letter to the Secretary General of the European School and to the attention of the Budgetary Committee expressing their regret that parents recommendation to postpone the implementation of the new organisation of school trips and explore alternative approaches following the failure of the initial procurement procedure was declined by the OSG in July 22. InterParents called the attention to the very poor but expensive service provided by Denatravel requesting the OSG to take following actions:

  • In compliance with art. II.18.1 c) terminate the FWC with Denatravel due to the contractor’s failure to implement the FWC and non-compliance with substantial contractual obligations.
  • Clearly communicate to the schools that they can use local trusted contractors in the interim.

In a subordinate position,

  • Not to renew the FWC with Denatravel according to art. I.3.5.
  • Clearly communicate to the schools that they can use local trusted contractors in the interim. 

In addition, it was requested that the OSG school trip working group reconvenes in order to consider other operating models that take the extra budgetary concerns into account.
Finally OSG was asked to track the value for money and performance of those trips where Denatravel is involved.

As a consequence, the OSG School trips working group was reconvened and the meeting was held on 29/03/2023 where parents explained once again all the concerns about the new organisation of the school trips and the problems with the travel agency Denatravel.

Parents expressed further concerns and made further proposals to be taken into account in case the collaboration with Denatravel will continue. 

  • In relation to cancellation insurance, InterParents stressed that the cancellation policy for sickness should be better indicated and explained in Denatravel’s offers because the current cancellation policy indicated in the offers foresee that 50% is lost at the moment of issuing a specific contract (usually 4-5 months before the departure) and 100% is lost one month before the departure.

OSG confirmed that there is insurance for the cases where a child cannot attend the trip because of illness.

  • Seeing the number of issues Denatravel has had in dealing with just a few trips and schools – do they have the right resources in the right places to manage for all of our schools going forward?  It might be better to phase in slower and ensure they are delivering on what Denatravel is doing now before expanding to all schools.
  • Reimbursement for poor quality trips? Under what conditions can OSGES reclaim money from Denatravel? 
  • Is the new organisation really reducing the workload and responsibility for teachers?  The experience and comments acquired from teachers so far shows the opposite. Who is responsible at school for checking the compliance of the offers.

OSG confirmed that they will have a very close look at all the complaints and further proposals presented by parents, send during the month of April Denatravel a message calling their attention to their contractual obligations and further organize a meeting with Denatravel, directors, teachers and parents representatives on 10/05/2023. 

Last week our school management informed AMPA MC about Denatravel’s second answer to the schools’ complaint about the P5 Sierra Nevada ski trip and the Burofax response sent by the school to Denatravel on 18/04/2023 which we have shared with P5 parents via their representatives.

And finally, we have received very little feedback about S4 and S6 trips from parents (and no feedback or survey results from the school) so we hope these trips were better organised.

We will keep you updated about any further steps. 

In the light of the recent offers received from Denatravel concerning this year’s school trips, please find here the letter with comments from the InterParents school trips working group. This working group was involved in the preparatory work for the centralised procurement process, which was carried out during 2022. As a result of the call for tender and subsequent evaluation, Denatravel was awarded the contract to organise and carry out school trips for all European Schools. This concerns mainly compulsory trips (P5, S4 and S6) but as well the other school trips exceeding the cost of 100 EUR/pupil.

From the AMPA Management Committee, we have called the attention of the Administration Board of our school to the fact that not all offers comply with the agreed tender specifications and ceilings and that the school should check the compliance before accepting any offer. We sincerely hope the situation will improve in the future.

The Mixed Canteen Committee has agreed that as the canteen personnel is still working 100% even if some classes are on trips, for the days pupils are attending school trips, 40% of the canteen cost (corresponding to raw material) will be discounted from the monthly price. P5 pupils will go to Sierra Nevada 30/01/2023 -03/02/2023; secondary pupils will travel during the week of 13/03 – 17/03/2023. If you have any questions about the canteen payments, please contact Eliana Hortal directly by email admin_alicante@ausolan.com