Online Learning – A guide for Students and Parents
This is a guide for online learning for Students (and Parents).
The Remote Curriculum
A student’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.
As a minimum, teachers will set work in the ‘Working from Home’ folders on SharePoint and this work will be broadly the same as what would have been taught in school. However, in some subjects, adaptations have to be made. For example, Drama group work may be replaced with monologues, Dance and PE will be adapted to students working alone, Science practical work may comprise of a video clip to watch, etc.
When online live lessons begin, the remote curriculum will again be similar to the curriculum that is followed in school. Adjustments will be made to ensure that the curriculum is suitable for online learning.
Remote teaching and study time each day
There will be a minimum of 4 hours and usually 5 hours of remote teaching provided per day. Wherever possible, live lessons will be delivered but, for some subjects such as PHSCE and Core RE, work is being set via SharePoint. A typical day may look like this:
|08:45-09:10||Tutor||Live tutor period (unless tutor is in school supporting students of Key Workers)|
|09:10-10:00||P1||Live double lesson of GCSE option subject, such as Geography, Drama, etc… with the student’s teacher|
|11:10-12:00||P3||Live double lesson of English with that student’s English teacher|
|13:30-14:20||P5||Live Science lesson with that student’s Science teacher
Work set on SharePoint for PHSCE lesson with an assessment in Teams
We use a combination of the following approaches to teach students remotely:
- live teaching via MS Teams (online lessons)
- recorded teaching (e.g. Oak National Academy lessons, video/audio recordings made by teachers)
- online work (set using SharePoint, in folders called ‘Working From Home’ in each subject
- textbooks and reading books students have at home
- commercially available websites and software packages supporting the teaching of specific subjects or areas, including video clips or sequences
- printed paper packs produced by teachers (e.g. workbooks, worksheets) where students may not have adequate internet access.
Accessing remote education
Students will access all the live lessons using Teams and the resources for home learning using SharePoint https://testbourne.sharepoint.com/sites/students. Students have used Teams and SharePoint in school and are familiar with the approach.
We recognise that some students may not have suitable online access at home. We take the following approaches to support those students to access remote education:
- We have provided guides for joining live lessons, and tutors have demonstrated the software to students.
- Heads of Year have contacted students who have needed help to get online and have given training where needed.
- We have surveyed parents and carers to determine whether or not they have suitable devices and Internet access at home.
- Where parents and carers have indicated they need more devices, our strategic IT Network manager has ensured that devices are available, appropriately imaged and distributed to those who need them.
- Where parents and carers have indicated that they do not have adequate internet access, our strategic IT Network manager has ensured that SIM cards, dongles or routers have been provided.
- Where students require printed materials, these are printed at school and made available for collection or delivery by post or in person.
- Parents and carers can submit students’ physical work to school by appointment on a weekly basis by taking it to reception.
- Where students have persistent barriers to accessing work, they will be invited into school to access provision from here.
If parents or carers have persisting or newly developing issues with equipment and resources for online provision, they should email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone the main school number, 01256 892061
We have high expectations for students’ engagement with remote education and for parental support.
Every day, students will:
- be registered as part of their morning tutor time.
- be registered in every live lesson.
In addition, live lesson participant registers will be downloaded from MS Teams.
Where we have concerns about a child’s engagement with their learning we will take a series of escalating steps to ensure the child is able to make progress:
- For single or infrequent incidents, we will text, email or telephone parents to discuss the matter.
- For multiple incidents or persistent lack of engagement, we will telephone parents to ensure that they are aware, investigate and resolve any barriers (such as lack of equipment) and offer support.
- Where persistent lack of engagement poses serious concerns about learning and safeguarding, we will designate the student as vulnerable and ask that they attend school in person for a fixed period of time.
Feedback and Assessment
Feedback can take many forms and it is most effective when given at the time that work is being completed or soon afterwards. For example, whole-class feedback or quizzes marked automatically via digital platforms are also valid and effective methods, amongst many others. Our approach to feeding back on student work is as follows:
- As far as is possible, teachers will continue to teach responsively, using feedback from students and their answers to all manner of questions and assessments to plan the next steps in their teaching. An example of this includes where teachers will change the activities they complete in a live lesson as students need more support.
- Teachers will ask questions in live lessons and breakout rooms may be used for discussion and group work, and this will help teachers gauge the understanding from individuals as well as more generally across the class. This may involve asking students to put their answers in the chat.
- Teachers will set Assignments using Teams and these will link to the learning. These may take the form of more traditional homework tasks, or they may be an extension of the learning covered in class. These assignments may be automatically marked and may be hosted on an external website.
- MS Forms, Quizzes and other methods of formative assessment may be used in lessons and as Exit Tickets at the end of lessons.
- Internal assessments will take place according to individual subject programmes of study. Students will be given advance notice of assessments so they can prepare. These will be set online.
- Students may submit work using the Class Notebook in Teams (which is a OneNote Notebook). This feature also allows teachers to respond to individuals (in the same way a teacher can respond to submissions on the Assignments in Teams).
Additional support for students with particular needs
We recognise that some students, for example students 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 students in the following ways:
- We are contacting all students who are on the SEND register, or their parents, and in addition, some students who required assistance in the last lockdown. This is to ensure that these students and their parents are supported in setting up online learning for their children.
- Heads of Year and SEND staff are aiming to contact all students with additional needs each week.
- Where parents and carers have indicated they need support, members of the SEND team have phoned home and spent time working with parents to solve issues and providing reassurances about workload and processes. For example, one parent emailed the SENDCo explaining they couldn't break the work up enough for their child. The SENDCo replied and asked one of the SEND team to ring that afternoon with a list of strategies.
- Where parents and carers have indicated that they do not have adequate IT or resources the SEND team and the pastoral team have worked together to ensure resources are provided. For example, a student currently working below KS3 level has highly differentiated work posted home.
- Where students require intervention and 1:1 sessions we are continuing to do these where staffing and technology permits. For example, the ELSA and Talkabout sessions are continuing and we are working on how to deliver the tutor time interventions.
- Parents and carers can contact the SENDco, class teacher, HOY or member of the SEND team directly, or can email email@example.com for help.
- Where students have persistent barriers to accessing work, they will be invited into school to access provision from here. Many of our EHCP students are attending school and dedicated SEND staff are working with them in our SEND Hub. During this time some students are having additional intervention to help them make progress. Some students have 1:1 provision during this time.
Remote learning by live lessons via MS Teams is the preferable delivery method as it allows the teacher to expertly structure the learning, provide activities, explanations, direction, and live feedback. In some cases, however, live lessons will not be possible. These include:
- When a member of staff is absent work will be set online using the “Working from Home folders.”
- When a member of staff is on rotation to assist with the Key Worker and Vulnerable provision or the vaccination programme. Work will also be set online using the “Working from Home folders.”
Most subjects will be delivered using live lessons but there are exceptions. PSHCE and Core RE will be set as online work in the “Working from Home” folder during this lockdown, rather than a live lesson.
Students should expect the vast majority of their lessons to be live but they will be notified via a message in Teams if a lesson is not running.
Students who have to isolate will have work set by their teachers in the ‘Working from home’ folders. Students need to go to https://testbourne.sharepoint.com/sites/students and find their subject. The teacher may give additional information using Teams or the students email, so they should check before contacting their teacher for help with work.
In some cases, such as whole school closure, teachers will host live lessons. More information is below.
Teachers and students will follow their timetable as normal. Students need to log on to Teams for tutor time at 8:45am, and stay logged on to Teams for live lessons. Teachers will be taking registers and parents of students who are not attending lessons will be contacted. Students must remember there was a new timetable emailed starting for January 2021, and the week commencing 11th January is week 1.
For simplicity, we are using the timings of the day that the school had before staggered breaks were introduced because of Covid. These are:
Students in school
We will have a few students in school as part of the Key Worker and Vulnerable children list – these students will attend the online lessons the same as students at home. Students in school need to bring in headphones with a microphone. If students do not have these devices, we will be able to lend them appropriate headphones.
The SEND department will be supporting students in school where needed. The SENDCo can be contacted via the firstname.lastname@example.org email address.
Joining a lesson
All the lessons are being delivered according to student timetables. Students need to follow the instructions below to join the lesson.
1. A few minutes before the lesson is due to start, log onto Teams and go to the relevant Teams for your timetabled lesson
2. On “General” channel in Posts tab, you will see the lesson notification as below when your teacher is ready to start the lesson:
3. Click “Join” to attend the lesson
If students have any issues accessing Teams or online lessons, they should contact email@example.com from their school email account. Parents need to email firstname.lastname@example.org
Recognition and sanctions
Even though we are now teaching online, we have the same systems and high standards. For students learning at home we have issued a code of conduct for parents and students. (See below Appendix 1: Code of Conduct for Participating in Online Learning).
We also follow our usual recognition system, awarding recognition points for our learning qualities of Respect, Integrity, Courage in Learning, Ambition, Responsibility, Diligence, and Leadership.
Students will have their efforts recognised in other ways besides awarding house points, such as positive emails and phone calls to parents, e-postcards, recognition certificates and mentions in newsletters and on social media.
The lessons will obviously vary hugely depending on the subject and the skills/ knowledge to be taught. Teachers will expect students to participate fully in the lessons, including verbally by answering questions, in written work in their exercise books, using websites and completing any assessments. Students should be prepared for the lesson by having the appropriate equipment for learning that they would have had in school.
Homework will be set as assignments using Teams in the usual way, however staff will careful examine the amount of work they are setting students. We know it can be difficult to gauge how much work to set remotely so do bear with us if the homework amount varies over the next couple of weeks.
Parents will have a weekly digest from Teams showing which assignments are due, overdue or upcoming. If parents or students have any queries about homework they should contact the class teacher in the first instance.
If a student is having any problems accessing the lesson, joining Teams, or any other IT problem, they should email email@example.com from their school email address. If they are struggling with aspects of the learning, they should email their class teacher. If they have general worries, they can contact their tutor. Please reassure students that we are here to help.
Students should email their class teacher or tutor for help with specific lessons and learning.
Students with specific IT queries can email firstname.lastname@example.org
Our SEND department are contacting students with SEND who needed help in the March lockdown. If you and your child have not been contacted by the SEND department and you need help, please get in touch by emailing email@example.com
Appendix 1: Code of Conduct for Participating in Online Learning
This information is to ensure clarity of expectations for online learning. The vast majority of our students consistently meet our expectations, but this document serves as a useful reminder and ensures consistency.
The online safety of staff and students is extremely important. This Code of Conduct is to ensure the safety of all involved and facilitate the best possible learning, free from inappropriate behaviour or interruptions, for students at home.
Parents are asked to ensure that their children understand this agreement and the consequences the school may take if their child does not behave in an appropriate way.
- Students need to log on using a phone, tablet or PC to all of their timetabled lessons, including tutor time, using Teams.
Teachers will take a register for each lesson and tutor time, and students not attending will be recorded. Parents will be contacted if students do not attend.
- Students will engage in lessons in a similar way to regular classroom learning.
This includes sitting up at a desk and not lying in bed or on the sofa; making sure no music or TV is on in the room; no mobile phones to be used during the lesson unless directed by the teacher; having all equipment, exercise books or paper and/ or notes ready before the lesson.
- No part of any lesson will be recorded in any way by a student.
This includes taking photographs, video or audio of staff, or video or audio other students without permission. The distribution of such images or recordings is also strictly forbidden. This is no different to what we would usually expect in face-to-face lessons. Parents are asked to encourage students to remove their phones during their distance learning lessons.
- Students will be polite and respectful in all the online interactions.
They will not interrupt or make any inappropriate, offensive, or unkind comments, both in the audio recording of the lesson or the conversations tab.
- Students will follow the instructions set by their teacher.
This includes keeping their microphone muted unless answering questions or contributing as directed by their teacher and using the conversations tab for questions relating to the lesson. The conversations tab is not to be used for chat with their peers.
- Students will not enter a lesson before the time set by their teachers and will not re-enter the lesson after the teacher has ended the lesson.
As Teams is set up for meetings between adults, students can ‘Join’ lessons before and after the allowed time. Every time a student joins a meeting the time is recorded, and their participation is recorded. All students must not join meetings before 5 minutes prior to the lesson time, and all students must leave the lesson at the end and not re-join. Sometimes, students may be asked to wait in the virtual lobby. If this is the case, they should do so and wait for their teacher to allow them into the meeting.
Although the vast majority of our students are sensible, polite and mature, we must ensure that the learning for all students, as well as the wellbeing of students and staff is protected. Therefore, students who do not adhere to the above expectations face a range of consequences, including:
- Warning by the teacher in the lesson.
- Sanctions set on Behaviour Watch and applied when the child is next in school, such as Formal Warnings and After School Detentions.
- Removal from the online lessons, possibly including the teacher ending the lesson and contact home (phone call or email) to discuss poor behaviour with parents. This may result in students attending lessons in school, removal from Teams, or other further consequences.
- Student is removed from Teams and Office 365 for a fixed term, with work set via photocopied worksheets emailed to parents.
- Fixed term exclusion from school, meaning student is removed from the learning environment as above, and a re-integration meeting is conducted with parents and a member of the Senior Leadership Team.