Advice for schools and colleges

Schools and colleges have no responsibility under health and safety law for work experience students. The employer is responsible for workplace health and safety.

Risk assessment

Schools and colleges or those arranging placements for students, for example Education Business Partners (EBPs) or third-party independent organisations/businesses should check the employer has risk management arrangements in place. What they cover in their risk assessment depends on the level of risk.

You do not need additional paperwork for assurance purposes or to second guess the employer's risk assessment or their risk control measures. You are unlikely to have the knowledge to evaluate it and could give the false impression that you have 'approved' it.

Work with parents to make sure employers know in advance about students who might be at greater risk, for example due to health conditions or learning difficulties, so they can consider them.

Pass on relevant information about the student to the employer and advise on the suitability of a student for a particular placement.


For employers who are new to taking students on work experience, talk through what the student will do and any relevant precautions. It might be helpful to make a note of your conversation.

You do not need to do it all again for a new student where an employer is known to you and has a good track record, and the student's needs are no different to those on past placements.

Also, don’t do duplicate checks on employers. If you are using a third party to arrange placements, work with them to make sure employers are not requested to do things twice.

Where there is a third party organising the placements, they should work with you to ensure there is no duplication in arrangements or processes.

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