A south-west principal says he will have to go on every school camp and excursion this year just to ensure his students don't miss out.
A new enterprise agreement covering time in lieu for teachers is causing headaches for schools, and its coming at a cost to camps for some schools.
But Woodford Primary School principal Daniel Watson said he planned to run all his school camps this year while other schools were trying to figure out the implications of the change.
"It's all new," he said.
Mr Watson said there was a lot more planning and management of time in lieu, something schools never had to do before.
"At the end of the day, it's also recognising teachers for working outside their 38-hour week," he said.
Mr Watson said he was trying not to cut or scale back camps.
He said he was trying to maintain the status quo but until he reached the end of the year he wouldn't know the financial impact.
"We don't know what we don't know," he said.
"If we get to the end of the year and it costs schools a heck of a lot more money and there's nothing in the budget coming to alleviate that, how do you do it?
"We're in the same predicament as everyone else.
"There are schools this year that are cutting back their camps to one day... or only doing it for every second year because of the cost factor."
Mr Watson said at the end of the day he didn't want kids to miss out.
"Principals are exempt from time in lieu," he said.
"So principals can't accrue any time in lieu... at the end of the day I know I'm going on every single camp and excursion this year because I don't want the kids to miss out on anything.
"Most principals will be in the same boat."
Mr Watson said the Department of Education had offered free camps coming out of COVID-19 last year, something that was extended this year.
He said he was lucky enough to get a free camp for his school this year which had alleviated some pressure.
But it wasn't just camps that schools were worried about, it was other excursions too and it was an issue that could impact rural areas more than city schools.
Mr Watson said for country kids to get to regional or state sports finals it meant going to Ballarat, Geelong and Melbourne.
"For schools sending teachers with that group, that's three hours there and three hours back," he said.
"That's six hours before the day has even started that you've got to cover time in lieu."
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