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.
The remote curriculum: what is taught to pupils at home
What should my child expect from remote education?
All lessons will be taught via Microsoft teams. Students will follow their usual timetable and this will continue until they return to school. Classes will be taught by their regular class teacher. On the very rare occasion this is not possible due to illness, we will make every effort to ensure the lesson still goes ahead on teams, taught by another Swanshurst teacher or one of our cover supervisors. It may occasionally be necessary to direct students to Firefly for online learning.
If a student is unable to access their lesson on Microsoft teams, the week’s work will be available on the subject pages on Firefly.
Will my child be taught broadly the same curriculum as they would if they were in school?
We teach the same curriculum remotely as we do in school wherever possible and appropriate. However, we have needed to make some adaptations in some subjects. For example, in largely practical subjects such as Design and Technology and Food adjustments have been made to the curriculum as the practical element is not currently possible. Teachers are re-sequencing the curriculum to ensure students will resume practical work on return to school, and be given the opportunity to learn and practise the required skills.
Remote teaching and study time each day
How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?
We expect that remote education will take pupils five hours each day. This is in-line with the number of hours education students would receive if they were in school. There will also be homework set, and this will also be in-line with the amount of homework students would normally receive.
Accessing remote education
How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?
All students are asked to use Microsoft teams to access remote learning.
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:
- Pastoral teams have worked ahead of lockdown to identify students requiring support with devices and access to the internet. Laptops and other devices have been distributed in-line with this information.
- If your child is still without a device/ access to the internet, please contact their Head of Year who will work with you to ensure support is provided.
- Firefly will also be used as a back up if your child cannot access teams. Each department will update their subject page each week to ensure it contains the week’s work for each year group, along with resources and instructions regarding how to submit work.
How will my child be taught remotely?
We use a combination of the following approaches to teach pupils remotely:
- Live teaching (online lessons) will be how students are taught for the duration of school closure.
- There will be a variety of ways students will keep and submit their work, and this will depend on the subject. This may be work in their exercise books, submitting work on teams ‘Class Notes’ or another method. In each case, the teacher will make it clear to the class what their expectations are, and support students to meet them.
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?
- We expect all students to attend every lesson on their timetable, and follow the regular structure of the school day.
- You can support your child by helping them to set good morning routines, ensuring they are ready for learning promptly at the start of the day in the same way they would be if they were physically in school.
- You can support your child by asking them questions about their lessons, and encouraging them to talk to you about what they’ve learned.
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
- Teachers will check students’ engagement each lesson. They will use a variety of methods such as direct questioning, the chat function on teams, Class Notebook on teams, submitting work on Firefly or other as appropriate.
- If there are any concerns, the teacher will contact the pastoral team and a member of that team will be in touch with you.
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. 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 pupil work is as follows:
- Students will be asked to submit some work weekly to be seen by the teacher, so that the teacher can assess progress. This might be done using teams, Firefly or another platform as relevant to the subject.
- Teachers will also use lessons to assess work and progress, and will use questioning with whole-class responses, quizzes and other methods to assess progress and diagnose where additional support might be needed.
- Your child’s work will continue to be marked in-line with the school’s marking policy. Marking episodes will receive more detailed feedback and require action from the student. This is in-line with expectations when students are physically attending school.
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:
- Our Learning Support team have been in touch with families of SEND students. All SEND students will continue to be supported through school closure with the same contact with the Learning Support team as they would normally have. The team will call and email families, carers and students to provide whatever level of support is required.
- SEND students may attend school during school closure. We have members of Learning Support on site at all times to support our SEND students.
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?
- All of the above points regarding remote teaching, monitoring engagement, assessing progress and providing support, relate to any students self-isolating. If your child is self-isolating, they may continue to access their full timetable in the regular way.