LEARNING FROM HOME

We will be publishing information here for students if and when they have to do online learning from home due to the coronavirus crisis.

Online Learning Form
In the event of a partial or complete lockdown, we would like to know what access students have to the internet and appropriate devices to work on.

Many of you will have completed the online learning form on School Gateway. If you do not have access to School Gateway, the form is available here: https://forms.gle/33wXfW8yMqs4rbgh8

Online learning plan

General Policy

The aim of this policy is to consider the practical implementation of blended learning across a number of eventualities in order to ensure pupils, teachers, parents and other stakeholders are clear about expectations and responsibilities.

This policy draws on recommendations made in the:

Aims

  • To ensure consistency of approach to learning for pupils who are not in school.
  • To set out clear expectations for staff and students with regards to online learning.
  • To ensure that the needs of all pupils are catered for and will allow staff to keep in daily contact and provide a two-way platform for learning and teaching, in a professional and confidential manner with all pupils. Teaching and learning can be tailored, changed and updated as time progresses, in-line with DfE circular 2020/06, allowing for replication of classroom activity to the best of our ability. As part of this, the Continuum of Remote Learning will be embedded. In all communications we will adhere to our commitment to maintaining pupil wellbeing.

Research Evidence

There is an emerging body of research into “blended learning”, a style of education in which students learn via electronic and online media as well as traditional face-to-face teaching. This approach to teaching and learning has grown exponentially due to widespread school closure as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic. The EEF have identified the following key areas to consider for successful blended learning provision.

  1. Teaching quality is more important than how teaching is delivered. Providing that the established principles for introducing new knowledge are adhered to (explanation/self-discovery, scaffolding, feedback) then there is no difference between the effectiveness of real time remote lessons or pre-recorded material. What matters most is that each learning sequence builds on prior understanding.
  2. Ensuring access to technology is key, particularly amongst disadvantaged pupils. Lack of access to appropriate technology is a barrier to effective participation in remote learning. We need to be aware of pupils who may have less access than others and require extra provision/ support.
  3. Peer interaction provides motivation and improves learning outcomes. Peer marking, modelling and sharing of work/group work, as well as live discussion and the use of shared forum functions for collaborative learning are all useful strategies to motivate and help progress whilst engaging learners.
  4. Supporting pupils to work independently can improve learning outcomes: Using metacognitive approaches to encourage reflection and promote deliberate practice helps learners engage more effectively but also reminds them of key learning and thinking skills.
  5. Different approaches to remote learning suit different types of content and pupils. Teachers will be supported to reflect on different approaches to remote learning and what will be most effective to deliver their subject content through ongoing CPD and coaching.

Remote provision

The government has specified minimum expectations for remote provision:

  • set assignments so that pupils have meaningful and ambitious work each day, including new material – planning a programme that is of equivalent length to the core teaching pupils would receive in school
  • teach a planned and well-sequenced curriculum so that knowledge and skills are built incrementally, with a good level of clarity about what is intended to be taught and practised in each subject
  • gauge how well pupils are progressing through the curriculum using questions and other suitable tasks, and set a clear expectation on how regularly teachers will check work
  • enable teachers to adjust the pace or difficulty of what is being taught in response to questions or assessments including, where necessary, revising material or simplifying explanations to ensure pupils’ understanding.

 Live streamed lessons from the classroom:

  • Live streamed lessons can be a useful tool to ensure the equity of education of all pupils, and to mitigate against increased teacher workload. However, it is important to recognise that the experience of the lesson in the classroom compared to at home is very different.  Classroom lessons work by the nature of their live interaction that is extremely difficult to replicate through live streaming, especially in large classes.

Academies must ensure they have clear safeguarding policies and practices in place. Ideally, the teacher should not be visible on camera. However, in limited cases where the teaching requires a teacher to be visible on camera, clear procedure should be put in place by the school. These include:

  • Clear procedures for staff to follow where a child protection issue arises during a live stream (e.g. the staff member witnesses behaviour which suggests a child may be at risk of harm).
  • Pupils should not be visible on screen at any time.
  • Pupils’ microphones should not be audible to one another unless the teacher makes it so, for questions, e.g. for Q&A session.

Teaching and learning

  • In the event of a partial or full lockdown, we will follow the school timetable, teaching the planned curriculum including mentor time.
  • For any students without access to WIFI or a suitable device, booklets which follow the planned curriculum will be provided or a suitable device will be provided by school.
  • All lessons will follow our school learning structure: lessons will begin with a recap to retain, the learning question will then be shared with students before moving onto guided practice where students work together and with the teacher. Students then complete independent practice, applying their learning for at least 25 mins and the lesson ends with a reflect and review, which will revisit the learning question.
  • All lessons will continue to have high standards of challenge, with teachers supporting students where necessary.
  • Teachers must be explicit in how they model new material and learning to students.
  • Questioning of students is an integral part of learning and should still continue in online learning. This will be done either through the ‘chat’ function or through breakout rooms to allow students to have discussion time.
  • Assessment will still take place as per the assessment calendar.
  • Students will receive feedback based on department marking policies.

Roles and responsibilities

Teachers:

  • In the event of lockdown or if more than half the class is self-isolating, lessons will be conducted live on google meet through google classroom and will be recorded and uploaded for students who cannot access the lesson live. Independent practice will be completed offline, so that staff and students have a break from the screen. However, teachers should be available to respond to questions (either on google meet or on google classroom) and everyone should come back together for reflect and review.
  • In the event of individual students self-isolating, they will be able to access the ppts for their lessons, which are all uploaded to google classroom.
  • Teachers will ensure that all students have the google classroom code and have followed this up with parents if they do not. Google classroom codes are all available on the LfH tab on the school website.
  • Feedback will be given to students as per department marking policies in terms of how and how frequent.
  • Teachers should update the engagement sheets weekly, showing whether students have attended their lessons, completed work and the effort which has been put into this.

Curriculum leaders:

  • curriculum leaders will ensure their curriculum is suitable and accessible for students
  • will ensure booklets are planned for all year groups and topics.
  • will ensure their teams set appropriate work for all classes
  • will ensure that appropriate resources are shared with their teams

SLT:

  • will coordinate the approach to online learning
  • will monitor the effectiveness of online learning through review of lessons, work submitted and regular meetings with curriculum leaders

Pupils and parents:

  • Staff should expect pupils to:
    • ensure everyone feels respected, valued and included
    • attend their lessons on time and engage in online learning
    • to complete work set by the deadline
    • to ask for help if they need it
  • Staff should expect parents to:
    • to support the school values
    • make the school aware if their child is sick or cannot complete work
    • contact the school if their child needs help with their work
    • ensure their child completes remote learning tasks

Attendance and Engagement

  • Members of the admin team will monitor the engagement sheet, led by heads of year. If a student fails to engage with the work set, admin will call home in the first instance. This will then pass through the college system, with mentors, coordinators and heads of year if there is no improvement in engagement.

Safeguarding

Keeping children and teachers safe when providing remote education is essential. Remote education is a new experience for both staff and pupils, so it is important that schools understand how to approach safeguarding procedures online. We cannot emphasise enough the importance of a safe online environment and encourage parents and carers to set age-appropriate parental controls on digital devices and use internet filters to block malicious websites. These are usually free, but often need to be turned on.

If you have any concerns phone the academy office on 01295 251451 or use the contact details on the contacts page of the academy website. All information will be treated in confidence and where necessary reported to the appropriate agencies.

In order to make sure that your child stays safe online, we ask that you follow these guidelines:

  • Students/parents/carers should ensure that there are no distractions
  • It is not appropriate for parents or carers to take part unless invited to do so.
  • Where possible your child must take part in video calls in a suitable communal environment. All members of the household must be aware that the call is taking place and make sure they use appropriate language and behaviour when nearby or in the background.
  • Your child must be appropriately dressed (uniform is not necessary, but they should not be dressed in sleepwear and should be fully dressed in clothing that covers the top and bottom half of the body).
  • You will make sure your child has ‘logged off’ the call correctly and signed out before turning off any devices.
  • You and your child will not try to contact any teachers or school staff using these online tools outside of the pre-arranged calls. If you need to contact a teacher or member of school staff for any reason you will do so following your normal contact procedures.
  • Students must listen to instructions and enable or disable their microphone when requested.
  • The same rules of conduct and behaviour will apply as apply in the classroom.
  • Students/parents/carers should not take photos, screenshots, record and video or audio from sessions or attempt to live stream it from their mobile phones.
  • Any breaches of the points above will result in students being immediately removed from the session, potentially being banned from all future sessions and further sanctions may be implemented in accordance with the academy’s behaviour policy.

In order to protect your child, we will follow these guidelines:

  • No teacher or member of school staff will contact you or your child outside of any pre-arranged meetings using these online tools and if they do need to contact you will do so following their normal contact procedures.
  • Teachers will check any links or videos they may direct your child to and make sure everything they use is age appropriate.
  • Teachers and other adults on the call will use appropriate language/behaviour throughout the call.
  • If not in school, teachers will ensure they are in a communal living space throughout the call. Where possible they will blur the background in any video calls and any members of their household will use appropriate language/behaviour throughout the call.
  • We may record and store sessions on school systems for safeguarding purposes.
  • Ensure that online learning tools are in line with data protection and GDPR policies.
  • If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s use of online tools, please contact us. We appreciate your continued support during this challenging time.

Special Educational Needs and /or Disabilities (SEND)

Some of our children who have a high level of special needs may require a mixture of technology and paper copies to access learning. This can be discussed with the class teacher and appropriate resources could be provided should the activity require it to support their learning.

Workload

The Aspirations Academies Trust acknowledges that application of blended learning can have implications for the workload of those delivering the curriculum.  To a large extent this will be driven by contextual circumstances, e.g. where remote learning has to be delivered in conjunction with ongoing learning in the classroom.  Principals will keep this under careful consideration, consulting with the workforce and trade unions as appropriate with a view to identifying where workload pressures are a concern and addressing these, as appropriate.

Monitoring arrangements

Application of the Policy will be monitored by Principals and Regional CEOs and others as directed by the Managing Director.  The policy will be reviewed at least on an annual basis under the authority of the Managing Director. Any amendment will be subject to consideration of the Executive Operational Board.

 

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