Remote education provision: information for parents

This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to pupils and parents, guardians or carers about what to expect from the College’s remote education provision.

The remote curriculum: what is taught to pupils at home

  • The College is committed to continuing to deliver the curriculum across all curriculum areas via remote learning mechanisms. Learners will continue to follow the same timetable that was in place before the Christmas break and any changes to a learner’s timetable will be communicated to them. Any variations in delivery will be according to need.

  • The College is committed to delivering the same curriculum remotely as learners would expect to receive if attending in person wherever possible and appropriate. However, we have needed to make some adaptations in some subjects. For example, where practical aspects for certain technical qualifications cannot be delivered via online means, adapted learning will be put in place to continue the development of knowledge, skills and understanding as far as possible through practical research and exercises, teacher-generated instructional videos and/or other online learning materials.

Remote teaching and study time each day

  • We expect that remote education (including remote teaching and independent work) will take learners broadly the following number of hours each day:

    In the vast majority of cases, learners will continue to follow their timetable as expected including 1:1s and group tutorials timetabled with Progress Coaches. This is in addition to work being set for completion outside of the delivery timetable including homework and further research tasks.

Accessing remote education

  • The College has streamlined the mechanisms by which learners must engage with online lessons to two digital platforms: Moodle and/or MS Teams. It is anticipated that all learners will take part in online learning via one of these platforms, however where it is deemed that in order to maximise the learning experience it is necessary to use both of these resources, that may be implemented.

  • We recognise that some learners may not have suitable online access at home. We take the following approaches to support those pupils to access remote education:

    In the first instance, where learners are not able to engage with online learning, staff will put in place mechanisms for learners to engage with work via different means (ie accessible via email or post). Learners and/or parents/guardians should contact the learner’s Progress Coach if there are issues with downloading/accessing learning materials. This should be the case if learners are unable to submit any work set electronically.

    In the long term, the college is committed to ensuring all learners are able to access the same online learning experience as far as possible. The College is in the process of identifying any learners who do not have the necessary equipment (ie laptop/device) to engage with the College’s chosen online learning platforms. These learners will be provided with the necessary hardware required to continue their learning, as was the case during the March –June 2020 lockdown.

    Learners and/or parents/guardians who are experiencing issues accessing online learning for whatever reason should contact the learner’s Progress Coach to notify them of the difficulties being experienced. The college will then assess the required needs and put the necessary support in place as far as possible within its means.

  • We use a combination of the following approaches to teach learners remotely:

    The majority of lessons that learners will receive within their timetable will be delivered by staff ‘live online’ however not exclusively so in order to make learning and engagement sustainable.  Aside from live online lessons, learners will also experience elements of the following to complement these live sessions:

    • Recorded teaching (video/audio recordings made by teaching staff including, for some practical subjects, videos of teacher demonstrations)
    • Learning documents produced by staff (including workbooks and worksheets)
    • Tasks set in textbooks or reading books that learners have at home
    • Tasks set through appropriate websites to support the teaching of specific subjects or areas, including video clips
    • Long-term project work and/or internet research activities.

    All live online lessons are available on one of the two approved College platforms – either Moodle or MS Teams, and information on how lessons are accessed will be shared with learners in advance (either via College email or Microsoft Teams chat groups).

Engagement and feedback

  • We encourage students to follow their existing timetable and attend all online lessons and complete with work set. Learners should also engage with staff so they can get help, ask questions and receive feedback as appropriate. This includes timely completion of homework tasks, tests, assessments and assignment work set by teaching staff. It is important that learners experiencing difficulty with engaging with work set contact their Progress Coach in order for staff to support their need.

    The College firmly believes that learners have the best chance of succeeding when a strong relationship exists between the College and home. As a result, we ask that all parents/guardians should encourage learners to follow their online learning timetable and engage with lessons and work set accordingly and where possible look to provide a constructive learning environment within the home for learners to successfully engage with their lessons.

  • Learner attendance and engagement with online learning will be monitored just as though learners were at college in person. Learner attendance will be monitored daily and appropriate actions put in place for learners who are absent without notifying the college accordingly. In addition, curriculum area managers review attendance and engagement on a weekly basis to identify any areas of support required.

    Parents/guardians will be contacted by college staff (including but not limited to Progress Coaches) should attendance and engagement not beat the expected level set in order to explore the reasons for non-engagement and establish what can be done to resolve this.

  • Learners will continue to receive feedback on their work, progress and engagement as they would expect to receive if they were attending lessons at college in person. As learning now takes place online, learners will receive feedback through varied mechanisms including where appropriate 1:1s, whole-class feedback or marked quizzes submitted on digital platforms and other methods. Progress, engagement and attainment to date will also be shared via the third Progress Review report of the academic year, released to parents in February 2021.

Additional support for pupils with particular needs

  • 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:

    During a period of remote learning, the College, subject to Government guidance, will continue to provide a facility on site for learners who are classified as being vulnerable such as those with an EHCP or a young carer. This will provide learners with access to Additional Learning Support (ALS) and Wellbeing whilst supporting learners to complete the online lessons taking place in their subject(s).

    For those completing learning remotely, LSAs will continue to support the lessons they did prior to lockdown by accessing the online lessons. We can also arrange additional learning support outside of these through online 1:1s with a relevant member of staff. If this is required, the learner or parent should contact the progress coach.

    We are also able to support parents by providing training, if required, so that they can support their child in accessing the online platforms that we use. This can be arranged by contacting your child’s progress coach.

Remote education for self-isolating pupils

Where individual learners 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.

  • When a learner is unable to attend lessons due to the need to self-isolate, they will be able to access the classroom-based lesson through accessing MS TEAMS. This will allow them to participate in a live lesson alongside those in the classroom. It is important that any learner needing to self-isolate makes their progress coach and teacher aware so that they can set this up prior to the lesson. In practical lessons, the streaming of live lessons will not always be possible. In these situations, teaching staff will ensure the learner is aware of what took place and provide access to any associated material.