Remote Education Guidance for Parents
Remote education provision: information for parents
This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to students and parents or carers about what to expect from remote education if local restrictions require entire cohorts (or bubbles) to remain at home.
In the event of a local outbreak, the PHE health protection team or local authority may advise a school to fully or partially close temporarily to help control transmission.
Coombeshead Academy has a contingency plan for this eventuality. This may involve a return to remaining open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers and providing remote education for all other students, or it may involve remote education for certain year groups for a period of time.
For details of what to expect where individual students are self-isolating, please see the final section of this page.
The remote curriculum: what is taught to students at home
At Coombeshead Academy our ultimate aim is to try and follow the intended curriculum whether students are in school, working from home, or a combination of the two. Our preference is to provide video lessons to follow the curriculum where possible. These may be live or pre-recorded. Where neither is possible, we may set video lessons provided by the Oak National Academy, which match our planned curriculum.
What should my child expect from immediate remote education in the first day or two of students being sent home?
Our remote education platform is Microsoft Teams. All students and teachers have received training in this, and so lessons will continue immediately using Microsoft Teams. Students can access this using the dedicated app (available for all devices) or can sign in to www.office.com using their school email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) and password.
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 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 PE lessons, students may be set a series of challenges to develop their personal fitness. In practical subjects such as music, art or drama, work set may be a combination of practical work (where possible) and theory work.
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 (including remote teaching and independent work) will take students 5 hours per day. This is in line with the number of lessons they would normally have in school. All lessons will be scheduled in Teams by 4pm the previous day.
When all students are in school we operate a split break system to keep students in year group bubbles. The timings for these vary depending in the year group. Therefore, to maintain simplicity, where there is a partial closure of a year group and a group of students required to isolate under track and trace, we will stick with the specific timetable for that year group, which will be confirmed by email.
In the instance of a full closure of a year group, where all students remain at home, we will use the following timetable to avoid any split lessons:
0845 - 0910
Morning registration with Tutor – all students expected to attend this via Microsoft Teams
0910 - 1010
1010 - 1110
1110 - 1140
1140 - 1240
1240 - 1340
1340 - 1410
1410 - 1510
Accessing remote education
How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?
All students will access remote education through the Microsoft platform. Students can access all Microsoft applications through www.office.com. They are also able to download all Microsoft applications to different devices for free. There is a video guide to the platform by clicking here. It is important that students are regularly checking their email (Outlook) in order to get notifications for lessons and additional notices from teachers. When students sign on to Microsoft Teams they will see that they are added to a separate team for each class/subject. Clicking on the Team will take them into the class area. Live lessons are scheduled as ‘meetings’ in the general area. Students may also be directed (by email) to YouTube for any pre-recorded lessons or the Oak National Academy site.
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 students may not have suitable online access at home. We take the following approaches to support those students to access remote education:
- If you do not have access to a device to complete remote learning effectively, you fall into the category of educationally vulnerable and should attend school as normal.
- If there is an issue with access to a device to complete remote education, please let us know immediately by emailing email@example.com
- We will do everything we can to support remote education and have a number of devices that we may be able to loan as well as helping to resolve any issues with connecting to the internet.
- We recognise that some students may only be able to take part in lessons on a device with a small screen, such as a mobile phone. We are happy for students to complete any work set on paper instead of on a computer if needed.
- If students are completing remote education on paper rather than computer they can always upload a photo of their work. Where this is not possible, we will work with you to find a solution.
How will my child be taught remotely?
We use a combination of the following approaches to teach students remotely:
When teaching students remotely, we are:
- providing frequent, clear video explanations of new content, delivered by a teacher in the school or through high-quality curriculum resources or videos.
- setting assignments so that students have meaningful and ambitious work each day in a number of different subjects.
- teaching 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.
- gauging how well students are progressing through the curriculum, using ques-tions and other suitable tasks and set a clear expectation on how regularly teach-ers will check work.
- enabling teachers to adjust the pace or difficulty of what is being taught in re-sponse to questions or assessments, including, where necessary, revising mate-rial or simplifying explanations to ensure students’ understanding.
- planning a programme that is of equivalent length to the core teaching students would receive in school, ideally including daily contact with teachers.
We are considering these expectations in relation to the students’ age, stage of development or special educational needs, for example where this would place significant demands on parents’ help or support. We will avoid and will not set long-term projects or internet research activities.
Our preference is that where possible, our teachers teach live video lessons. Where this is not possible, video lessons may be pre-recorded to ensure that explanations are clear and effective. Where a teacher is unwell, we may use video lessons provided by Oak National Academy to support student explanations. These cover the entire national curriculum and are available to all schools for free. These have been developed in partnership with a wide group of teachers and school leaders to develop lessons that match the curriculum being taught in school.
What happens if my child’s teacher is unwell?
If a member of teaching staff is unwell and is not able to provide remote education, your child may be added to a new class team in order to join a different lesson or alternative work may be supplied. Ultimately the aim is to ensure that teaching continues in the most effective way possible until the teacher is able to resume teaching.
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 engage with remote education as soon as it is required. Each day of remote education begins with a registration session with their form tutor and it is essential that every child attends this. As well as maintaining contact with the tutor, this session will help to troubleshoot any issues.
As parents/carers we need your support to ensure you child sticks to the routines of completing school work at the right times and is provided with a space they can work without distraction. Where this is not possible, please let us know and we will do what we can to help.
Please reinforce clear boundaries with your child during their remote education, such as not allowing them to use their mobile phones (unless being used for the lesson).
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
Student engagement with remote learning is monitored daily. A register is taken for every lesson as well as the morning register with tutors. Where students are not engaging, this will initially be followed up with contact home to try and resolve any potential issues.
Where students are attending remote education lessons but there are concerns with the quality or quantity of work being done, the individual teachers will make contact with home.
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 student work is as follows:
- Teachers may deliver a lesson through Microsoft Teams and set work to be completed through the remainder of the lesson. This work may be handed in electronically using the assignments function in Teams or teachers may ask students to email it to them.
- With assignments submitted through Teams, there is a feedback function built into the platform, where teachers can mark or comment on student work.
- Teachers are not expected to mark every piece of work in depth, but they will be checking work and addressing any errors or misconceptions with students in the following lessons.
- We may use quizzes through online forms to assess student understanding. This provides instant student feedback and scores are recorded so that teachers can address common mistakes in future lessons.
Additional support for students 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 students, for example some 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. Please contact our SEND Co-Ordinator, Clare Bamford (firstname.lastname@example.org), with any specific queries.
Remote education for self-isolating students
Where individual students 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 students 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?
We provide a pack of work for all students that contains work and resources that all students can complete. This is emailed to both students and parents as soon as we are notified. Many of the subjects direct students to video lessons provided by Oak National Academy, that match the curriculum we are teaching in school. Students will also be able to continue any knowledge organiser work, which are also now available through the website.
Your child should also email their teachers to let them know of the self-isolation. The teacher will then be able to support with specific lesson resources sent by email. Where possible they may also be able to add the student to the lesson through Microsoft Teams, although please understand that this will not always be possible or appropriate..