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AIBU?

School Trip to Morocco

410 replies

Goldsand · 17/10/2022 19:00

My DDs secondary school have just announced they will be doing a school trip in the next school year to Morocco for my daughters year.

It’s normally Iceland but they have changed it to Morocco this time.

A couple of other mums have said they won’t be sending their kids as they don’t think it’s safe to send their teen girls there.

Iv never been personally but I thought it was a safe country overall.

However, now I’m doubting myself …. I was going to agree to her going even though i think it’s steep as it’s over £1,000.

So…

YABU - It’s safe, don’t worry about it.
YANBU - I would never send my teen child there on a school trip.

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Fancylike · 18/10/2022 19:43

Fastandlupine · 18/10/2022 13:23

Again, 'my friend', roadside cafe toilets are the same as uk ones. And what's wrong with the roads, missed that one

Yeah they are really really not the same. I’ve never seen an open sewerage pipe offered as the toilet in a UK roadside toilet, with no running water, no lock on the door, and a crowd of men gathered outside when you come out 5 seconds after going in. Don’t lie and say you think the hygiene standards and treatment of women are even close.

Like I’ve mentioned, I live in the Middle East and Morocco is one of the last countries I would send a tween girl to without one on one parental supervision.

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Fastandlupine · 18/10/2022 19:49

It sounds like we've had very different experiences in the same place, however, I'm still not sure I would shield my kids from low grade toilet situations as you describe, that would rule out quite a lot of countries. I want them to be adventurous in their lives

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ChazsBrilliantAttitude · 18/10/2022 20:43

Fastandlupine · 18/10/2022 19:49

It sounds like we've had very different experiences in the same place, however, I'm still not sure I would shield my kids from low grade toilet situations as you describe, that would rule out quite a lot of countries. I want them to be adventurous in their lives

I've backpacked around the world on my own including countries like India and Turkey as well as South East Asia so I am reasonably "adventurous". I've been visiting North Africa for over 20 years including at times when the FCO advised against travel. When I visit Algeria I live with DH's family so have a pretty good sense of the culture. I speak some Arabic and reasonable French (we are a bilingual household as DH speaks Arabic to the DC). What real understanding do you have of life in North Africa?

There is nothing adventurous about teenage girls being exposed to street harassment. There is nothing adventurous about unsafe public toilets.

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daretodenim · 19/10/2022 07:00

PP who haven't used a squat toilet in Morocco, haven't even seen one there, cool.

But other posters have. And they're not describing pristine porcelain.

So now, imagine you've got your period. You're away from home. You're 11-13.

Or

You've got horrific food poisoning and peeing poo.

Now go and squat, don't slip in the "liquid" if it's wet, or the sludge if it's not.

Toilet paper not there as you use then wash your hands.

I mean exactly how graphic does it have to be before you say, "Ok, not ok for my child".

Even clean squat toilets are uncomfortable experiences for anybody not used to squatting. Add in all the other things that go with them, then add the "bonus" experiences for females, in backwater areas, and why on earth would you want your tween DD to go through this?

And I agree that toilets shouldn't be an issue in Morocco and I don't think that it's a given that they will be. However, a bus loads of kids in a country where at least one of them is likely to get a stomach bug, coupled with a bus journey to and fro a rural area and it's a very high likelihood.

I'd say if you want your DD to experience Morocco, then take her there yourself. It's a great place. I haven't been with my kids, but I would take them. Not for a school trip though.

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Fastandloupine · 19/10/2022 07:50

Chaz, I too back packed around the world on my own, I have visited nothing African countries with my prebuscent and teenage daughters, and found little sexual harassment, no more than in the UK. We have had different experiences. So I would trust a school to take care of my kids on the adventure of a lifetime.

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Fastandloupine · 19/10/2022 07:50

*North African

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FlyingWithRyan · 19/10/2022 08:40

ChazsBrilliantAttitude · 18/10/2022 20:43

I've backpacked around the world on my own including countries like India and Turkey as well as South East Asia so I am reasonably "adventurous". I've been visiting North Africa for over 20 years including at times when the FCO advised against travel. When I visit Algeria I live with DH's family so have a pretty good sense of the culture. I speak some Arabic and reasonable French (we are a bilingual household as DH speaks Arabic to the DC). What real understanding do you have of life in North Africa?

There is nothing adventurous about teenage girls being exposed to street harassment. There is nothing adventurous about unsafe public toilets.

Those of us with families and lived experience in the places you mention in your post know what it's like for young (and not so young) western women. As an 18 year old, wearing modest clothing and walking around the capital city of aforementioned country got groped twice during one short outing by disgusting, dumbass stupid young men. They walk past, grab your crotch or breasts and disappear swiftly back into the crowd. All the many other times we get leered at and accosted. Do all MENA men do this? Of course not, some of the most fantastic and least sexist men I have ever met are from MENA. Is it part of street culture for a vast number of weird young and not so young men in these places? Absofuckinglutely.

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ChazsBrilliantAttitude · 19/10/2022 08:48

@FlyingWithRyan
Exactly. DH's family are lovely but even they watch out for me if we are out in some places. Algeria doesn't have the level of tourism that Morocco does so there aren't tourist hotspots that are targeted. None the less I dress modestly and cover my hair when we are out (I am not Muslim) and adapt my behaviour to local norms to avoid attention.

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Pumpkin20222 · 19/10/2022 10:36

Agreeing strongly with the posters who have lived in the region and speak some Arabic. Have also lived and worked in the region and speak some Arabic. Harassment can be considerable and I noticed a significant increase since around 2011. Social media has not helped and there are disturbing clips shared (I know this happens everywhere, but the volume and content is particularly bad). If you do speak basic Arabic and so understand what is being said it is really concerning in some of the cases of street harassment. Caution definitely needed and I wonder how much the school has taken the threats onboard, or if it is based on holidays 30 years ago.

Many, many lovely people and I do love the region. I rarely went out after dark.

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Goldsand · 23/10/2022 15:29

Thanks for everyone’s opinion/help.

After having a proper discussion with her dad and a final confirmation from the school that the trip is indeed 1.3k! We have decided she won’t be going.

Way too many horror stories on here alone so I feel too I comfortable with her going.

The school will be doing a trip to Iceland when she is in year 9 and Iv said she can go to that instead so she’s happy.

Thanks again for everyone’s input.

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