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St John The Baptist Catholic Primary School We pray together, work together and always do our best, following the example of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Remote Learning Policy 2020 - 2023

Remote Learning Policy 2020 - 2023

 

At St John the Baptist Catholic Primary school we ‘pray together, work together and always do our best’ to ensure we use our gifts and talents to follow God’s plan for us. Through God’s love and guidance, we strive to follow our learning values of independence, curiosity, aspiration, compassion, resilience, respect and open-mindedness to help us flourish academically, emotionally and spiritually.

“I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.”

Philippians 4:13

 

This policy has been approved and adopted by the Governing Body in September 2020 and will be reviewed in September 2023.

Specific Aims

  • To outline our approach for pupils that will not be attending school, as a result of government guidance or the full or partial closure of our school.
  • To outline our expectations for staff that will not be attending school due to self-isolation but that are otherwise fit and healthy and able to continue supporting with the teaching, marking and planning for pupils.

 

Who is the policy applicable to?

 

Following on from the announcement by the Government that all schools will be opening fully in September but must prepare for possible full or partial closures throughout 2020-2021, below is an outline of how we will be providing a ‘virtual’ school.

 

We are committed to ensuring the very best outcomes for children and we are concerned that a period of isolation may be detrimental to the wellbeing and the educational progress of children. We wish to work with you to support your child in accessing their lessons and schoolwork from home.

 

We have created a package of online tools for the delivery of this remote education; using Microsoft Teams and Seesaw, as well as several additional online learning platforms, such as Mathletics, Spelling Shed, LanguageNut, Purple Mash and Bug Club to name a few.

 

Every child is expected to attend school from September 2020.  In line with government guidance, pupils, staff and families should self-isolate if they display any of the following symptoms:

 

  • A continuous, dry cough
  • A high temperature above 37.8
  • A loss of, or change to, their sense of smell or taste
  • Have had access to a test and this has returned a positive result for Covid-19

 

Software and online platforms

 

Within all plans, teachers will set appropriate work in-line with our current curriculum, primarily supplemented by a range of resources provided by Oak Academy and White Rose Maths.

 

Children will remain in contact with their class teacher through MS Teams and Seesaw (to share successes and communications).

 

Oak Academy has been selected to support remote learning for a number of reasons. The Oak Academy lessons are in-line with our teaching ethos – they encourage the use of retrieval practice, explicit teaching with high quality modelling, and the use of deliberate practice. The online lessons are free to all and offer a recorded taught session so that the children can access physical teaching from a teacher and then access work relating to that lesson within the same website.

There are also hundreds of lessons specifically aimed at children with SEND needs and requiring additional support. Class teachers are to use the lessons as part of standard classroom practice and homework so children are familiar with the platform.

 

White Rose Maths resources will be used as they are matched to our current maths curriculum model. Children are very used to seeing these resources.

 

Spelling Shed, Mathletics, Bug Club and Purple Mash will all be utilised to support the acquisition and retention of basic core skills.

 

MS Teams will be used to set and received assignments for remote learning, with the opportunity for the children to communicate with their teacher through live video during whole class/whole school closure. Often this will be used so children can ‘drop-in’ to receive further academic and pastoral support.

 

Seesaw will be used to set and receive assignments from our younger pupils as it offers whole-communication approach.  Pupils can share their learning with their teacher through video clips, drawings, audio recordings and photographs.

 

Replicating the Classroom Remotely

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/remote-education-good-practice/remote-education-good-practice

 

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) has found that the effectiveness of remote teaching is determined by many of the same factors as determine the effectiveness of live classroom teaching. For example:

  • ensuring pupils receive clear explanations
  • supporting growth in confidence with new material through scaffolded practice
  • application of new knowledge or skills
  • enabling pupils to receive feedback on how to progress

 

These characteristics of good teaching are more important than the medium of delivery, be it in the ‘live’ classroom or through remote provision (whether or not that remote provision is live or pre-recorded).

 

In writing this policy, senior leaders have carefully considered how to transfer into remote education what we already know about effective teaching in the live classroom.

 

Live classrooms enable important interaction between teachers and pupils through, for example, questioning, eliciting and reflective discussion. These complex teacher skills in the live classroom are not always easy to recreate in a remote environment, but where remote education recreates at least some aspects of this interactivity and intentional dialogue, teaching is likely to be more effective, support pupil motivation and lead to better progress.

Pupils in the early stages of their formal education are likely to have particular needs which cannot easily be addressed in the same way as those of other pupils. Likewise, some pupils with SEND will require specific approaches tailored to their circumstances.

 

Access to appropriate devices and connectivity is essential for technology-led approaches to remote education. However, securing access for all pupils is a significant challenge in many contexts.

 

To plan for potential future disruption, we gathered evidence of:

  • pupils and families do not have device or internet access
  • pupils who would qualify to receive equipment obtained under the department’s Get help with technology programme

 

Effective Remote Learning Provision

 

While there are a number of ways to implement high-quality remote education, remote-access technology offers many advantages which enable schools to continue a relatively normal programme of teaching across all or most curriculum subjects.

 

Interactive platforms

 

We have chosen to use Microsoft Teams and Seesaw to enable a single point of access for assignments and allowing teachers to host both live and pre-recorded meetings and explanations.

 

Linking platforms to applications

 

Tests and quizzes are an important part of effective teaching and can be easily created to precede or follow teaching sequences. When teaching live, it is possible for teachers to question individual pupils and for pupils to pose questions to teachers or peers, for example using the ‘Chat’ function. 

 

Microsoft Forms is our chosen software which works well for rapid feedback and allow live marking.

 

Schools can use these media to continue to deliver most of their normal planned curriculum, and, where available and relevant, textbooks (both ‘hard copy’ and electronic) could be issued for pupils to use at home to complement and support lessons.

 

Where lessons are recorded, they can be accessed later by pupils, making flexible use possible in the context of limited or shared device access. These and similar platforms can make it easier for teachers to monitor pupils’ progress because work can be viewed or submitted through a single system. This in turn may make it easier for teachers to adapt work in the light of pupils’ progress.

Other resources, including other good quality online resources (both free-to-use and subscription-based) can be linked or embedded.

 

We are using a wide range of free and subscription-based online resources as well as pre-recorded lessons (Oak Academy and White Rose Maths) to provide a flexible approach to remote education for all pupils and their families.

 

Because these platforms enable the creation of simulated or virtual classrooms, it is easier to carry over what we know about effective teaching from the live to the virtual environment. This can include clear teacher explanations of new content which are sequenced to build on previous learning, targeted questioning, and scaffolded practice.

 

Maintaining aspects of school life online

 

Often, it is necessary to operate flexibly, for example to accommodate contexts where pupils are having to share a single device within the home, meaning that access to pre-recorded lessons is needed. However, frequent contact between pupils and teachers is crucial. This contact may, for example, be through presence in a remotely delivered lesson, questioning, feedback, or some other form of on or offline exchange about schoolwork.

 

We will be providing regular pastoral meetings and weekly Gospel worship. 

 

What happens when an individual child needs to self-isolate?

 

Individual pupils may be required to self-isolate if returning from a country which requires 14 days quarantine or they or a member of their household exhibits one of the three main symptoms of coronavirus. 

 

These children can be identified by class teachers through the SIMS register – codes 8 and 9.

 

Home Learning will be set the day following school notification through the class apps – Seesaw or Microsoft Teams. 

 

Home learning will be set each day to reflect the content of provision within the classroom.

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Maths
  • One other subject

 

Although pupils will be expected to hand-in their assignments to enable teachers to provide feedback and shape future learning, this will remain flexible as children and/or other members of the household may be unwell.

 

Keeping in touch

  • Teachers are available to respond to questions through the chat facility on Teams and the feedback or announcement facility on Seesaw after school hours but before the end of the working day.  Teachers will not respond to questions during the evening or at weekends.

 

What happens when a whole class needs to self-isolate?

 

We will provide appropriate remote learning for pupils that are not able to attend school so that no-one need fall behind. In the following points, an outline of the provision will be made and some guidance given on the role of pupils, teachers and parents.

 

The governors and senior leadership team at St John the Baptist Catholic Primary School are fully aware that these are exceptional times and would like to make it clear that this document seeks to inform and guide families. Each family is unique and because of this, should approach home learning in a way which suits their individual needs.  We realise that the circumstances that cause our school to close will affect families in a number of ways. In our planning and expectations, we are aware of the need for flexibility from all sides:

 

  • Parents may be trying to work from home so access to technology as a family may be limited;
  • Parents may have two or more children trying to access technology and need to prioritise the needs of young people studying towards GCSE/A Level accreditation;
  • Teachers may be trying to manage their home situation and the learning of their own children;
  • Systems may not always function as they should.

 

Staff expectations

 

Class teachers will plan assignments that are relevant to the curriculum focus for that year group and supply resources and feedback to support tasks for home learners for each of their contracted working days.  

 

PPA cover teachers will plan assignments for the subjects and classes they teach and supply resources and feedback to support tasks for home learners for each of their contracted working days.  

 

Learning Support Assistants will support class teachers during their contracted working hours by:

  • Joining virtual meetings as the second adult to ensure safeguarding
  • Providing electronic feedback and remote learning support for named individual pupils or small groups
  • Create and provide resources as directed by the class teacher or SLT.

 

SENCO will liaise with outside agencies to provide resources and advice to support children with SEN needs.  Class teachers retain overall responsibility for the progress and attainment of all pupils. SENCO will communicate with parents of SEN children every week to check on wellbeing, access to remote learning and effectiveness of support available:

 

Week 1: Access to assignments, support through individual channel where required.

Week 2: Wellbeing check-in

(Repeat cycle)

 

Learning Platforms

 

  • Year 4, 5 and 6 will use the learning platform Microsoft Teams.
  • Year R, 1, 2 and 3 will use the learning platform Seesaw. 
  • Each learning platform will be used from September 2020 to provide and receive homework and to support class learning during the school day to enable all members of the community to become familiar with its use.

 

Assignments

 

Home Learning for the week will be posted on MS Teams or Seesaw:

 

  • Information containing all website links needed to access home learning resources along with clear information about the learning for that week will be provided, usually by the class teacher.  This will include reference to daily assignments for relevant subjects.
  • Class teachers will plan and resource all core subject remote learning.  PPA cover teachers will plan and resource for the subjects they teach during the normal working week – this includes feedback and pupil/family support.
  • Links to daily Writing assignments – a range of activities including clips from Oak Academy and set online learning using SPAG.com, Spelling Shed, Purple Mash.
  • Links to a daily Reading assignments - a range of activities including clips from Oak Academy and set online learning using Purple Mash, Phonics Play and Bug Club.
  • Links to daily Maths assignments – these will be a range of activities including clips from Oak Academy/White Rose Maths and set online learning using Purple Mash, Mathletics.
  • Twice weekly RE assignments (using http://request.org.uk/) and Science assignments (Oak Academy/BBC Teach)
  • Lessons from the wider curriculum subjects –one other subject per day.
  • A balance between online and offline learning will be provided.

In summary, three core subject activities each morning and at least one other subject assignments each afternoon. An example of a week might look like this:

 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Morning

Prayer & Reflection

Reading (incl. phonics)

Reading (incl. phonics)

Reading (incl. phonics)

Reading (incl. phonics)

Reading (incl. phonics)

Writing (incl. spelling & grammar)

Writing (incl. spelling & grammar)

Writing (incl. spelling & grammar)

Writing (incl. spelling & grammar)

Writing (incl. spelling & grammar)

Take a break!

Mathematics

Mathematics

Mathematics

Mathematics

Mathematics

Time for lunch!

Afternoon

RE

RE

Science

Science

History

PE

 

Art

 

 

Group academic mentoring

Pastoral Virtual Meeting

Group academic mentoring

Pastoral Virtual Meeting

Group academic mentoring

 

  • Any resources used, including websites and worksheets will be shared by the class learning platform. Staff will add these resources to their class platform electronically and it will be the responsibility of families to print/use these resources at home (or contact the school to ask for a ‘paper pack’ which must be collected by a third party if the family are in self-isolation).
  • Teachers will respond promptly, within reason, to requests for support from families at home (Mon - Fri only). This should be done via the learning platform.

 

Structure of Home Learning Assignments

The most effective learners can self-regulate and organise their approaches to learning in an age-appropriate way.  They are aware of their strengths and weaknesses and have well developed metacognitive strategies that help them to learn.  Metacognitive strategies can be taught and are particularly important for your pupils if you can’t be with them in the classroom, along with a consideration of how we learn and how we remember what we have learnt. See appendix 1: Framework for a learning sequence across several days.

Feedback

  • Pupil feedback will be provided by staff daily using the class learning platform.
  • Pupils will submit remote learning through electronic submissions (word, excel, power point) or photographs and video recordings.
  • Staff will provide feedback by commenting on submitted learning.
  • Where appropriate, steps to success will be provided for remote learning activities.

Keeping in touch

  • Teachers are available to respond to questions through the chat facility on Teams and the feedback or announcement facility on Seesaw during school day hours (9.15am – 3.35pm).
  • Teachers are unavailable to answer emails from pupils or parents outside of working hours.
  • LSAs take part in video calls and give pupils feedback on their assignments via the class platform, as they would in class

 

  • Teachers are to make contact each week with any pupil who is not submitting work to check how they are getting on at home – initially by email but followed with a phone call if there is no response.  Concerns must be escalated to a DSL/DDSL.
  • Each child will be invited to one virtual pastoral meeting at least every two weeks – this could be to facilitate smaller group work/virtual academic mentoring: teachers run smaller group sessions with children in their class (usually with a ratio of about 1:5) to work through specific activities, give feedback on work, and generally 'check-in' with the children
  • Engage children in the early years and Year 1, with even smaller groups.
  • YR/1 - teachers carry out short video calls: 1 teacher to 3 pupils, via Teams throughout the day. They may use these to do a simple counting activity, read a story, or sing 'happy birthday' to a child - the focus is social and emotional as well as prioritising early reading and phonics. Parents stay with children on the call and take care of the technology. Teachers notify parents in advance when these are taking place and parents can sign up for a time slot that suits them.
  • Y2/3 – 1 teacher to 5 pupils (max.) via Teams throughout the day.  Activities may include academic feedback and instruction following the submission of assignments with a focus on fluency and retrieval as well as circle time, RHSE, story reading and social conversation.  Teachers notify parents in advance when these are taking place and parents can sign up for a time slot that suits them.
  • Y4/5/6 – 1 teacher to 6 pupils (max.) via Teams throughout the day. Activities may include academic feedback and instruction following the submission of assignments with a focus on fluency/retrieval and low-stakes quizzes to consolidate learning as well as circle time, RHSE, story reading and social conversation.  Teachers notify parents in advance when these are taking place and parents can sign up for a time slot that suits them.

Attending virtual meetings with staff, parents and pupils

  • Dress professionally for all virtual meetings.
  • Present ‘webinar style’ by sharing your screen
  • Ask all attendees to mute their microphone and screen until they are invited to turn them on.
  • Blur your background and avoid noisy areas.
  • Pastoral Virtual meetings:
  • Small groups of between to 4 and 6 children.
  • Length of meetings will depend on the age of the children and the nature of the activity.
  • Pastoral games and conversation aimed at pupil wellbeing and to address remote learning questions.
  • Staff to maintain control of microphones and screens to ensure they are able to safeguard pupils.
  • All meetings will be attended by two members of staff (class teacher and LSA) and will be recorded for safeguarding purposes.

Family (pupil/parent/guardian) role

 

  • Where possible, it is beneficial for young people to maintain a regular and familiar routine. St John the Baptist Catholic Primary School would recommend that each ‘school day’ maintains structure. A suggested timetable will be put on the relevant class learning platform page as a guide.
  • In the event of a whole-class isolation, the children will be sent home with their home reading book in addition to their English, maths, RE and science books – this is so that work that children complete at home can be kept safe, ideally in their exercise books, and can be brought back to school when safe to do so.
  • Should anything be unclear in the work that is set, parents can communicate with class teachers via the class learning platform or by contacting the school office. They should make clear which year group and subject the question relates to.
  • We would encourage parents to support their children’s work, by viewing the work set together, and then making appropriate plans to complete the work.  This can include finding an appropriate place to work and, to the best of their ability, supporting pupils with work encouraging them to work with good levels of concentration.
  • Every effort will be made by staff to ensure that work is set promptly on appropriate platforms but school cannot guarantee that the chosen platforms will work on all devices. Should accessing work be an issue, parents should contact school promptly and alternative solutions will be made available (e.g. paper copies of work). These will be discussed on a case-to-case basis.
  • Pastoral Virtual meetings
  • Children will be invited to join a fortnightly pastoral meeting via Teams and further virtual academic mentoring meetings as required.
  • Staff will communicate with parents at the beginning of Remote Learning provision to ensure every reasonable effort is made to provide a convenient time slot using MS Teams forms.
  • Year 4, 5 and 6 will receive their invitations directly from their class teacher through the Teams app.
  • Year R, 1, 2 and 3 will be sent an invitation directly to their parents email address.

 

Guidelines for the use of the school’s online resources

There are several key guidelines that we will be following, in order to ensure positive online behaviours on the school digital platforms.

  • Children will be expected to behave in a polite and courteous manner with their peers and teachers, while online.
  • Staff will be available at set times within the school day for online support, outside of scheduled meetings. There will, however, be periods of the day when teachers will go offline and will not be accessible by Teams message, such as lunchtimes, outside of normal educational hours and in the evenings.
  • When staff provide small group support in pastoral meetings, two staff members will be present on the call. The call will also be recorded.

We recommend that children have adequate time away from devices and that they have enough opportunity for physical activity.

 

Remote teaching for staff who are self-isolating

 

Teaching staff are required to self-isolate if they show symptoms outlined at the start of this policy or they have been told to shield and/or have received a letter to confirm this. If a member of staff is required to self-isolate, they are expected to:

 

  • Follow normal reporting procedure for planned absence.
  • Following contact with school, Headteacher may set up a referral to Occupational Health to support that individual.
  • It is expected that staff get tested. Should a staff member be tested, it is expected, as per national guidance, to share the result of this test with school so that appropriate plans can be made.
  • Whilst self-isolating, and if able to do so, non-teaching staff will be given an individual project to work on which is line with whole school improvement priorities or asked to support with the online learning provision for their year group. These projects will be communicated by the Senior Leadership Team and will be allocated on a case-by-case basis.
  • If unwell themselves, teachers will be covered by another staff member for the sharing of activities. Communication and planning during this time will not be undertaken until the teacher is fit to work.

 

Staff accessing personal data from home

Staff will likely access personal data about other staff members and pupils when working remotely, including when managing online learning.

  • Staff will be able to access personal data by logging onto the server through the virtual private network (VPN).
  • Personal data must not be kept on personal devices or on the desktop of your school laptop.

 

Ensure your school devices are secure

Follow the steps below on the devices you're using:

  • Keep the device password-protected - strong passwords are at least 8 characters, with a combination of upper and lower-case letters, numbers and special characters (e.g. asterisk or currency symbol)
  • Make sure the device locks if left inactive for a period of time
  • Do not share school devices among family or friends
  • Keep operating systems up to date - always install the latest updates

 

Threshold for setting remote learning

When a pupil is away from school because…

…for a period of…

…the school will provide the following learning resources:

They are unwell with suspected COVID symptoms or other childhood illnesses.

Up to 1 school day

Not applicable – a child too ill to be in school is too ill to learn at home.

They are unwell with suspected COVID symptoms or self-isolating with their household.

Between 2 and 4 school days

Curriculum aligned school-produced and Oak Academy work and resources, with home-school communication from the teacher to parents and pupil.  Core Curriculum coverage expected. Class teacher to contact home if assignments are not returned to ascertain support required.

They are unwell with suspected or confirmed COVID symptoms or self-isolating with their household.

Between 5 and 10 school days

Curriculum aligned school-produced and Oak Academy work and resources, with home-school communication from the teacher to parents and pupilCore curriculum coverage expected plus one additional subject daily.  Teacher to contact home at least weekly. Child to use as and when they start to feel better.

Class is self-isolating due to a confirmed case within the bubble.

14 days

Curriculum aligned school-produced and Oak Academy work and resources, with home-school communication from the teacher to parents and pupil from day 1 onwards.  Full curriculum coverage expected plus live pastoral and group meetings. Teacher to contact all children daily (through feedback) and weekly through live meetings.

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