This page contains all the key information students and parents need to know how the school will support you if there is a need for remote learning.
Your child's wellbeing and safety is always at the heart of our thinking. As young people returning to College they will carry with them, (to whatever degree), elements of grief, trauma, loss and anxiety. These are all toxic in the learning process, and for some children may have extinguished the flame of learning that previously made them a happy, successful learner. Possibly their experiences as a disaffected learner might have become more entrenched
We acknowledge that children will have had different experiences during this time. However, the common thread running through all is the loss of routine, structure, friendship, opportunity and freedom. These losses can trigger anxiety in any child. Some of you may have experienced this with your own children.
We know that an anxious child is not in a place to learn effectively. So with this in mind, the school community has thought about the most effective way to support your child’s ability to learn. This approach will encompass and support the academic expectations for your child.
What is Recovery Curriculum?
Professor Barry Carpenter has developed the Recovery Curriculum, as a response to the losses described above. It is a way for schools to help children come back into school life, acknowledging the experiences the children have had. We want children to be happy, feel safe and able to be engaged in their learning. We have decided that a way to achieve this for the children is to acknowledge the importance of helping them lever back into school life using the following 5 Levers.
- Lever 1: Relationships – we can’t expect our students to return joyfully, and many of the relationships that were thriving, may need to be invested in and restored. We need to plan for this to happen, not assume that it will. Reach out to greet them, use the relationships we build to cushion the discomfort of returning.
- Lever 2: Community – we must recognise that curriculum will have been based in the community for a long period of time. We need to listen to what has happened in this time, understand the needs of our community and engage them in the transitioning of learning back into school.
- Lever 3: Transparent Curriculum – all of our students will feel like they have lost time in learning and we must show them how we are addressing these gaps, consulting and co-constructing with our students to heal this sense of loss.
- Lever 4: Metacognition – in different environments, students will have been learning in different ways. It is vital that we make the skills for learning in a school environment explicit to our students to reskill and rebuild their confidence as learners.
- Lever 5: Space – to be, to rediscover self, and to find their voice on learning in this issue. It is only natural that we all work at an incredible pace to make sure this group of learners are not disadvantaged against their peers, providing opportunity and exploration alongside the intensity of our expectations.
Barry Carpenter, CBE, Professor of Mental Health in Education, Oxford Brookes University explains why a Recovery Curriculum is necessary to successfully transition children back to school. Click here to read more. https://www.evidenceforlearning.net/recoverycurriculum/
In order to return students to education and ensure they enjoy their time at school as well as achieve the best outcomes possible we have developed an overarching plan that addresses all of those levels suggested by Barry Carpenter.
A critical piece of work has taken place on remote education.
Remote education will be provided where students may need to self-isolate for a period of two weeks should, for instance, someone in their household test positive for Covid-19.
Remote education may also need to be provided if cases locally increase significantly and the school has to rotate year groups.
This is explained by the Government’s tier system.
At this tier, there are no changes to education and schools remain fully open. At this tier, the wearing of face coverings would be compulsory in certain indoor areas such as dining areas, indoor areas for wet breaks and the library. As a school we are also instigating staggered starts and ends, staggered breaks, collection points to avoid unmanaged corridors and regular hand washing.
At this tier, secondary schools would be requested by the government to limit the number of students on site at any one time by moving to a rota model. In this circumstance, the school is likely to use a model of “two weeks on and two weeks off” timetables, where students would be on site for two weeks then off site and working remotely for another two weeks.
At this tier, the school would follow what we call our “blending learning model”. This involves our teachers carefully looking at each scheme of learning in every subject and deciding on what material and activities would be best delivered in the classroom and what would be best delivered remotely. Students would be fully informed about what they were doing in each of the two-week periods.
At this stage, we have considered that we would operate with two weeks starting with years 7, 9 , 11 and 12 followed by two weeks with years 8, 10 and 13.
Whilst we appreciate that Tier 2 would present some issues for siblings, it would be impossible to arrange for them to be always on the same rota. We would aim for this where we can, but it may not be wholly possible.
In Tier 2, vulnerable students and children of key workers would be able to attend school during their two-week off-site period but would be placed under supervision to carry on with the remote activities in one of our ICT rooms.
At this tier, the Government would be announcing a partial lockdown in certain areas. For secondary schools this would be likely to lead to the prioritising of certain year groups and vulnerable students or students with key worker parents being on site. This could be because a certain year group or more have had to isolate owing to an outbreak in that bubble or because the government have decided nationally that it would be safer for only certain year groups such as Years 11 and 13 to attend.
Under this scenario the prioritised year groups would always be taught on site, as usual with all precautions being taken, and the year groups off site would be set remote work in line with Tier 4 below.
This would be a situation similar to March, when the full national lockdown was first announced, whereby only vulnerable students and children of key workers would be attending on site. All other students would be working under remote conditions. This work would be fully monitored as before with emails and phone calls from tutors and follow up by pastoral and senior staff.
In Tiers 3 and 4, vulnerable students and children of key workers would always be able to attend school but would be placed under supervision to carry on with the remote activities in our ICT rooms.
Children who are considered vulnerable and those of key workers will always be allowed to study on site. Where their bubble is timetabled to be on site, they would be integrated with their year group bubble.
Remote Learning Expectations
During the March lockdown over a very short time we rapidly developed a remote learning offer primarily based around Microsoft Teams.
Since then we have further developed this provision
- Each class now having its own section on Teams so that resources can be provided far more easily and be personalised to the teaching group.
- We have also introduced Knowledge Organisers across all subject and all years from Year7 through to Year 11
- We have undertaken audits to try and find out where household may not have appropriate ICT and are trying to fill those gaps (please let us know if you are worried about this area)
- We have well developed systems for communication with families either directly or through indirect means such social media
- Subject leaders have well thought out plans about the content they will cover in a face to face scenario as well as the work that will be covered through remote learning
- We have identified consistent electronic resources which students can use to complement their face to face teaching
- We have used research from the Education Endowment Foundation to provide the most effective format for remote learning
- We are continuing to support some students with remote learning on a 1:1 basis in school and at home in addition to normal lessons
- We have successfully delivered live lessons in a range of formats including team teaching
Should you be asked to self-isolate for a period of time
If this should happen to your child, for instance, someone else tests positive in your household then the Pastoral office will work let your teaching staff know the situation. Assuming you remain well, your teachers will then signpost you to a variety of resources that have been identified to enable you to keep up with the work being studied in class while you are at home. These will not be long drawn out pieces of work or vague Internet research but directly linked to the work your class will be doing at that time.
It is important that you keep up with this work.
If you have problems please get in touch with the relevant Head of Department whose email is available for you on our website.
Please bear in mind that your teachers will continue to have a full timetable at this time however we will expect them to contact you each week to check on how your learning is progressing.
Should your whole year group be asked to work from home for a period of time
Where our area enters Tier 2 restrictions or higher the school will be instructed to reduce the number of students on site at any one time. This may involve Year 7, 9, 11 and 12 being on site for two weeks while Year 8, 10 and 13 are taught remotely. After two weeks this would swap around.
During this time we will provide live learning experiences for classes and tutorials during your normal lesson times. Due to the numbers of students involved there may be some technical problems regarding bandwidth to have so many live lessons all operating at the same time from the school and so we may have to deal with this issue at that time. The lessons will be delivered via Teams and each class will have its own area to share resources. Following the normal timetable will provide a structure for the day and ensure an even amount of time is given to each subject as well as helping to make sure that students don’t lose the good study habits that they have just relearnt by being back in school. Tasks will be short and related to the current schemes of learning. If you have any problems with the work please do not hesitate to get in touch with us through the subject specialist email contacts on our website.
Feedback will be via Teams with key assessments identified and marked remotely. Again please bear in mind that the teachers will be continuing to teach their other classes in school and so responses may not always be immediate.
Instructions for how to access teams will be sent if we feel moving to this model is imminent.
Contact will be made home with students where we don’t believe they are engaging or indeed where we feel your child is doing a really great job.
In addition pastoral staff, the SENDCo and her team and our Pupil Premium team will all, as we did previously, start regularly checking in on students and their families to make sure they are getting all the help they need. This support has previously ranged from differentiating teaching materials through to food parcels so please do not be afraid to get in touch if you need any help. Our Teaching Assistants (Learning Mentors) and Aim Higher mentors will also be available to help prepare individualised resources and work remotely with SEND and Pupil Premium students supporting them with work set by teachers.
We will also publish tutor emails once again and wherever possible we will endeavour to deliver Lesson 42 through live teaching. Tutors will also be expected to make regular contact with their tutor group while they are working remotely.
We do understand how difficult remote learning and being away from school is for some students and families and so please refer back to the Remote Learning section on our website for the details of other organisations that might be able to support.
Top tips for parents, carers and students
Based on our experience form the previous lockdown we would suggest:
Establish routines and expectations: start times, breaks and lunch at school are at clear times. Maintaining this routine can help maintain a positive work ethic. Avoid spending the day in your pyjamas!
Identify a clear physical space in which to work: this will make it easier to focus on your learning, without other distractions.
Talk about the plan for the day, and the lessons ahead: spending extended time working at home is unfamiliar territory. Talking about how things are going can help pre-empt any problems.
Set times to be on and offline: There will be more screen time than normal whilst working at home. You may have to share devices with family members, and setting time limits in advance can help manage this successfully. Equally, spending time offline is important to maintain a sense of balance in the day.
Remember to exercise: Your wellbeing is enhanced by physical activity, so do make time for this.. This can really help if you are feeling anxious, which is completely normal whilst you are working from home.
Talk about things on your mind: it will be a big adjustment working from home every day, and having done it before does not necessarily make it easier. Talk about how things are going. The international and local situation is highly changeable. It is normal to feel uncertainty about this too. Be conscious of how much of the news you watch and talk about what you are watching. Do devote enough time for this.
Read a book: Escape, relax, unwind. Look after yourself. Remember how much you enjoy reading your Accelerated Reader books – look out for library updates and new books coming online.
E-Safety: Please discuss e-safety with your child/ren before they return to the remote Learning programme. Lots of resources to help you do this can be found on our website under ‘Safeguarding’.
Let us know! If you are having problems of any kind, from accessing the remote learning due to a poor broadband connection through to the work being too hard please get in touch with us via email through the contacts listed on our website.
Subject Specific Enquiries
- If there is a pastoral issue you would like us to know about, please email your child's tutor (scroll down the page to find email addresses) in the first instance, so we can update our records and be ready to support your child on their return.
Tutor Email Addresses
The latest information from the government is here (we'll update this page and email etc when extra information is announced): https://www.gov.uk/government/news/further-details-on-exams-and-grades-announced