Remote education provision: Information for Parents
This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to pupils and parents or carers about what to expect from remote education if local restrictions require entire cohorts (or bubbles) to remain at home.
For details of what to expect where individual pupils are self-isolating, please see the final section of this page.
Remote education is sometimes referred to as Home learning and the terms can be used interchangeably within our school context. It broadly covers the provision school will make to provide children with ongoing support for their learning in the event of a child being off school (either through self-isolation, bubble closure or school closure in response to National tier restrictions or lockdown).
Remote education is a relatively new concept in our primary school and has been developed in response to the Coronavirus situation which affected schools initially in March 2020.
Remote education is a massive undertaking and change to both the national and school educational landscape. This has required new skills, new technologies infrastructure and procedures to be introduced within school alongside ensuring the continued education for certain groups who are required by law to receive teaching within school (Key Worker and vulnerable groups).
This is a fast moving environment where schools have had to be reactive to the school closures and strategic in their development to make further improvements. Whilst massive strides have been made from March 2020 to the date of introduction of this information (January 2021) it is important to note that this will continue to develop over the coming weeks and months. We aim to build upon our successes, monitor engagement and provision as well as respond to parental feedback and keep pace with national developments.
There is an expectation that remote/ home education works best when school, parents and the child understand their roles and work in partnership to continue to support a child’s education when they are not able to be taught in school.
It is important to note that Remote education is only expected to be accessed when a child is well but prohibited from attending school.
Within our school:
- Headteacher (Alex Buckley) is the coordinator of remote learning provision, monitoring and strategic direction (with the general support of the Governing Board).
- Teachers with their year group partners are responsible for setting work for their year group. Teachers and Teaching assistants will be responsible for marking and feedback.
- Other staff will provide technical support where necessary to other staff and parents as required.
A pupil’s first day or two of being educated remotely might look different from our standard approach, while we take all necessary actions to prepare for a longer period of remote teaching.
What should my child expect from immediate remote education in the first day or two of pupils being sent home?
- We will endeavour to provide some meaningful activities in basic skills (Reading, writing and Maths) via DOJO on the first day of remote education. This will be supplemented by other activities which are enrichment / useful activities from other areas of the curriculum. This will be in the form of easily accessible practice and consolidation rather than specific new concepts. Any new concepts will be supported by an instructional type tutorial if they are available.
- Links to web based resources will be signposted for parents.
- We will provide work packs for children who may require them (school will identify in advance who these will be provided for).
- Vulnerable children and children with EHCP will receive a wellbeing check via phone call or Dojo message from an appropriate member of staff within 3 days of any school closure.
Following the first few days of remote education, will my child be taught broadly the same curriculum as they would if they were in school?
- We broadly teach the same curriculum remotely as we do in school (for children who are attending as Key worker children or vulnerable) and those who are being educated at home.
- The remote teaching and teaching in school (during any period of school closure) will focus upon the important basic numeracy and literacy skills as a priority. The “foundation subjects” will be covered but this may differ in the frequency and nature to how they would be taught in school. We aim to ensure all foundation subjects are covered over time but not necessarily each week. They may be taught as a discreet subject or as part of a topic approach and will be decided upon by the class teacher using their professional judgment on how best to engage the children in learning and cover the most important content.
- We aim to teach a suitable combination of consolidation and practice of crucial basic skills appropriate for the year group as well as introducing new content in line with National Curriculum age related objectives. However, we have needed to make some adaptations in some subjects. For example, PE may normally involve team and paired work but this will not be possible and so a focus on regular exercise, individual challenges and core stability work may be more appropriate. Other subjects such as music and modern foreign languages may be taught through themed activities. It is not possible to list all the possible exceptions or adaptations but through monitoring we will endeavour to ensure all subjects are championed and children have high quality and stimulating educational experiences.
- We aim to teach a curriculum remotely that is comparable to that which is taught in school (both for attending children during period of school closure and to the usual school curriculum). There may be some differences due to the extent to which parents can support their child with their learning. Additional or alternative activities may be provided / offered as school and parents work in partnership and evolve their work together.
Remote teaching and study time each day
How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?
Government guidelines are that that remote education (including remote teaching and independent work) will take pupils broadly the following number of hours each day:
Primary school-aged pupils
*It is inevitable that there will be some variance upon this within home learning as families juggle different pressures.
We strongly support the spirit of this guidance and encourage regular engagement with learning but we appreciate some families will be flexible in their “daily timetable” and therefore the “weekly” suggested amount may be more useful to them.
KS1- Equivalent to 3 hours per day (15 hours per week)
KS2 – Equivalent to 4 hours per day (20 hours per week)
FS- There is no National guidance on this but we suggest 2.5 hours per day for the Spring term (12.5 hours per week) Guided play is very much part of how a child within FS learns.
Accessing remote education
How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?
Lessons and learning activities will be shared with parents and carers via our online platform DOJO which is familiar and reliable with over 98% take up rate. Wherever possible work set will be available one day in advance and a “daily drop” will be posted between 3-4 pm the night before the days learning.
A weekly indicative timetable will be posted on DOJO on Friday for the following week with an outline plan of objectives and with resources identified which may require parents to prepare in advance. This will broadly indicate when activities will be introduced and will show the variety of:
- New learning with teacher led tutorials (often though a Loom link or similar platform)
- Practice and consolidation
- Signposting to suitable online resources
- National Oak Academy lessons
And will identify any key resources parents may need to prepare in advance.
Activities will either be available on the DOJO Class story dashboard or available on one drive / sharepoint. (We will be taking parental feedback on which is the preferred method)
All activities will remain available for children and parents to access / revisit at a later date and will be periodically archived (initially termly)
If my child does not have digital or online access at home, how will you support them to access remote education?
We recognise that some pupils may not have suitable online access at home. We take the following approaches to support those pupils to access remote education:
- We have communicated to our families that should there be difficulties in accessing a suitable remote learning device then we can support them by providing a loan laptop.
- If individual circumstances change, or additional devices are required for siblings please contact school on: 01332 512732 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Support for 4G routers and additional data allowances are available from DFE. Please contact school if you require further information.
- Should a child experience technical difficulties please contact school for support. If necessary families can access printed materials, school books or other resources as required. Please contact school to discuss your child’s needs.
- If there are any problems in uploading work onto DOJO portfolio work can be supplied on paper and left at the school office for the teacher to mark. This will be done in a covid secure way and therefore there may be a delay in providing feedback.
How will my child be taught remotely?
We use a combination of the following approaches to teach pupils remotely:
- Teacher recorded lessons and short burst instructional input teaching from year group teacher (online lessons) delivered as part of our daily drop-These can be accessed at a time to suit parents and children (Loom activities on Onedrive)
- Recorded teaching (e.g. Oak National Academy lessons, BBC Bitesize)
- Printed paper packs produced by teachers (e.g. workbooks, worksheets)
- Textbooks and reading books pupils have at home
- Commercially available websites supporting the teaching of specific subjects or areas, including video clips or sequences, links to BBC as well as other local and national resources which have been quality assured and checked for suitability of use by teaching staff.
- Longer-term project work and/or internet research activities are a useful tool for some children but we do not intend to over rely on this for independent learning. Regular checking on children’s work and feedback is essential if this project work is ongoing.
- Periodically there will be some challenges, activities and themed days which are shared with the whole school or selected groups via School Story on DOJO
- Whilst remote teaching we appreciate that there will be challenges for parents and children and we will develop a system to indicate “essential learning” and learning which is “desirable” and “optional” to cover the scope of what is achievable for parents and children during this unprecedented time.
- Live lessons using Microsoft Teams will be delivered initially with the sole aim of enabling children to “KIT” –Keep in Touch / Well-being activities with their teacher and have a shared experience.
This will vary in content depending upon year group but be informal, friendly, teacher led activities which may include a PSHE game, celebration of learning, story, motivational activity, quiz. It may be used as an opportunity for some whole class feedback and clarification on aspects of learning. *Live lessons will be recorded for Safeguarding purposes and quality assurance of content. As there are significant Safeguarding issues to consider Live Teams sessions will be rolled out from week beginning 25th January following information staff training and parental information being provided.
Teachers may also use Zoom or other platform (approved by SLT) for sharing and interacting such as a class story lesson or celebration assembly. Further details and necessary safeguarding procedures will be made available prior to this activity.
Engagement and Feedback
What are your expectations for my child’s engagement and the support that we as parents and carers should provide at home?
- The Government have set out conditions for school for providing access to remote learning. It follows that there is a National expectation that parents and children engage in learning set so that children make progress and are not disadvantaged any more than necessary in terms of their education.
- Whilst we appreciate every family has unique and challenging circumstances it is expected that all families engage with home learning as best as possible making school aware of any reasons for not accessing learning on a frequent basis.
- It is best practice that a routine is set to enable children to access home learning on a daily basis roughly reflecting a typical school day with breaks and lunch as well as exercise breaks.
- It is useful for children to have a dedicated place to work which is set out with the equipment they need; although we appreciate this is not possible for all families, children do need a quiet space free from distraction. If any families are struggling for suitable equipment (stationery etc.) they should contact school for a supply of essential resources.
- Ideally Primary age children will have the support of an adult (as they would in school) to keep them motivated, provide help and to monitor their online activities. Prolonged periods of unsupervised learning should be avoided. We empathise with working families and appreciate this is an enormous challenge- do what you can!
- Whilst there may be times children and parents are not in the “right frame of mind” for learning, parents should break learning down into manageable chunks of “little and often” so that good habits are maintained.
- It is essential that there is at least some form of learning taking place each day otherwise gaps in learning will get wider, children will become disadvantaged as well as becoming more reluctant to start learning.
- Regular learning will support children’s emotional health and wellbeing and it is important that their entitlement to an education is upheld even during these challenging times.
- Expectations of parental support, for example, setting routines to support your child’s education
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
- Children’s engagement with remote learning will be checked on a daily basis (by Teaching assistant or teacher) - this will be to check completion of work.
- The Headteacher will monitor on a weekly basis all children’s engagement to identify any emerging concerns. We will contact parents regarding level of engagement to work in partnership in understanding any barriers and providing support where necessary. Whilst we understand that there will be individual differences in levels of engagement that children and parents display in these challenging times we will aim to minimise further disadvantages for children and prevent gaps in education from getting wider. We recognise that a disruption to education and delivery should not disadvantage children any further than absolutely necessary. We expect parents to share this view and to welcome any support provided.
How will you assess my child’s work and progress?
Feedback can take many forms and may not always mean extensive written comments for individual children.
Children will be given feedback on their work in different ways. It will be given through marking and responses to their work which will happen on a regular basis. All children will receive some personal comments / feedback as part of developmental marking on some work weekly. Other work will be checked and “approved” with some less detailed feedback on a more regular basis in the aim to maintain high standards of children’s efforts and provide motivation and encouragement as well as to highlight any key errors.
Feedback may be given generically via a Loom lesson –eg when introducing a piece of new learning the teacher may recap previous learning or go over any key misconceptions that have been identified as part of their ongoing assessments of children’s work.
It is important that children receive feedback with their learning, so they are clear as to the things they have done well as well as any next steps. Therefore the more they engage with remote learning the more feedback they will receive and the more helpful this will be for their learning.
Periodically a teacher may set a piece of work which they will use to formally assess the children’s understanding and knowledge in the same way they would do within school. When this is the case “parameters” will be set and shared with the children eg. a time limit or without adult support (independent work).
Additional support for pupils with particular needs
How will you work with me to help my child who needs additional support from adults at home to access remote education?
We recognise that some pupils, for example some pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), may not be able to access remote education without support from adults at home. We acknowledge the difficulties this may place on families, and we will work with parents and carers to support those pupils in the following ways:
- To support families of SEND children, we adapt our approaches to ensure that the curriculum being delivered is carefully differentiated and meets the needs of the child.
- For children with SEND or younger children who may require additional support, we encourage parents and staff to work together - reassurance and confidence needs to be built upon in order for the children to be confident and to engage with their learning. It may be that children have the differentiated work set by challenge (e.g mild in KS2) or have extra recorded explanations or activities provided for them. We encourage a close partnership between parents of children with SEND during any period of remote learning. Children with an MEP or EHCP will continue to have a review process in place.
- Children with an EHCP will have an individual risk assessment in place ensuring good levels of engagement in learning.
- Some Younger children and children with SEND may prefer physical books to read in addition to Bug Club. If your child is not engaging with reading please get in touch.
- At all times, we would still encourage children to be as independent as possible.
Remote education for self-isolating pupils
Where individual pupils need to self-isolate but the majority of their peer group remains in school, how remote education is provided will likely differ from the approach for whole groups. This is due to the challenges of teaching pupils both at home and in school.
If my child is not in school because they are self-isolating, how will their remote education differ from the approaches described above?
Where a child is self-isolating (but well) whilst the rest of their class are in school, staff will continue to use DOJO as the platform to engage children in remote learning. Work will be uploaded for the child to access throughout the week and the child will receive feedback relating to their work. Physical work packs can be provided with notice if this is preferred by the parent.
It is unlikely that Loom style instructional teaching (delivered by teacher) will be available in the same way as when the whole class are isolating / remote learning. However, where appropriate they may be directed to National Oak Academy. A member of staff will make contact with them if they are off for more than a few days for a well-being and learning chat with both the parent and child so that any issues can be addressed.