Providing Remote Education : Information For Parents

Providing Remote Education Provision:

Information For Parents

This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to pupils and parents or carers about what to expect from remote education where national or 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

A pupil’s first day or two of being educated remotely might look different from our standard approach, while we take all necessary actions to prepare for a longer period of remote teaching.

What should my child expect from immediate remote education on the first day or two of pupils being sent home?

We need to change the way that we are providing online education to make this more interactive and engaging for the pupils.

Over the next week or two we will be establishing and setting up Google Classroom.  This is an online classroom which helps teachers to see the work pupils are doing and communicate with pupils in a safe online area.

Pupils should all now have their user names and passwords which are the same as their email accounts.  We will be sharing user guides for parents and pupils to use to access Google Classroom for the first time, including video versions of their guides.

Teachers will help pupils to access these guides on the current online lessons via ‘Google Meets’ and as a school we will help families who need help getting pupils connected. 

Google Classroom is used by many schools and will let the teachers provide better and more interactive lessons.  We, like many schools, plan to carry on using Google Classroom once we fully reopen as this will help encourage and promote independent learning. It also develops the digital skills pupils will need in order to access both the world of work and day to day life.

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?

It is not possible to teach the curriculum that we would normally teach in school, as in school teachers and assistants are able to help the pupils in lots of different ways that the internet does not allow.  Most pupils find online learning much more difficult and intense and so can’t concentrate for as long as they do with the support given in school.  To help with this, online lessons are shorter and we are encouraging pupils to take breaks, do some exercises and do practical tasks throughout the day.

Working online is a challenge for all our pupils and it is taking time for pupils to adjust to new ways of working with less direct support from teachers and assistants.  In school, most pupils work with a range of different teachers, access practical lessons and a have a wide range of courses and lessons.  To help pupils make the adjustment to online working, we have decided that most pupils will be taught by their form tutors. This way we can be sure that their lessons are delivered more consistently and by a very familiar person.

Both teaching and learning is harder online.  It takes teachers much more time to prepare lessons and resources and just like the pupils, staff are learning a new way of working.

Older pupils in exam groups or undertaking accredited course will be invited to lessons with subject specialist teachers, these lessons will often be in the afternoons


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 pupils broadly the following number of hours each day:

We expect pupils to be engaging in teacher directed learning for 3 hours a day.  This does not mean that teachers will be online working with pupils for 3 hours a day but that teachers will run lessons, set work and include things like exercise breaks for a total of 3 hours a day. Pupils may also be directed to relevant videos and/or TV programmes to support their learning.

Pupils who are in exam groups may have additional lessons and work to complete for these courses.


Accessing remote education

How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?

Meadow High School is using Google Classroom.  All parents should have received the pupils email user name and password for the Gmail email account. This account is linked to Google Classroom and so the same log in details are needed for Google Classroom.  This account is for school use only, it is owned and managed by the school.


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:

Thought our frequent welfare calls, we have identified pupils who do not have either a device or internet access at home.  The Department of Education have provided us with a small number of laptops and the school has also purchased a number of devices which are being loaned to students who have not been able to access online learning.

Some families do not have internet access at home or their access is limited.  We have provided internet dongles which can be plugged into a device like a laptop to give access to just this device.

If you are struggling to provide a suitable device for home learning or have internet access difficulties, please tell the member of staff who next makes a welfare call, Alternatively, you can phone or email school and ask for someone to call you back to discuss your needs.

As a school we have also provided paper work packs to be used by teachers when delivering and directing pupil learning.  Pupils in school are receiving the same educational provisional and access to remote learning that pupils at home are. 


How will my child be taught remotely?

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

Each teacher will provide lessons that they feel are suited to the pupils and the class they are teaching. The form tutors know the pupils best and are able to adapt teaching and support the pupils as a group and individually.

Like lessons in school, teachers will use a variety of teaching approaches that they know will best help to promote active learning and help keep their brain active and engaged.

Some examples of the sort of teaching that will be provided are:

  • live teaching (online lessons)
  • directing pupils to watch a TV programme or YouTube video related to learning
  • printed paper packs produced by teachers (e.g. workbooks, worksheets)
  • textbooks and reading books pupils have at home
  • commercially available websites supporting the teaching of specific subjects or areas, including video clips or sequences
  • long-term project work and/or internet research activities may also be expected especially for pupils undertaking accredited courses and exams


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?

When working at home pupils will need a suitable space to work in and the tools that are needed to compete work set such as pens, pencils, rubbers etc.  Please let us know if you need support with this.

Internet access and a suitable device for pupils’ to actively engage in remote education such as a laptop, PC or tablet.  Mobile phone are not suitable devices.  If your child is using a mobile phone please let us know this in the next welfare call or by calling or emailing the school.

The sort of support you need to give to your child will vary from pupil to pupil.  Teachers are aiming to provide learning tasks which pupils should be able to complete with very little help.  This means that some of the work will be at a lower level then we provide normally.  This is because we want pupils to feel confident that they can achieve and complete work.  If you think the learning level isn’t suitable, please speak to your form tutor about this

We appreciate that not all parents are available to support learning but that many are keen to offer support at times.  Some aspects of work may need some parental support, particularly in those lessons where the teacher has set work but is not present in the lesson.  Please let us know if this work is too challenging or not challenging enough.


How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?

Google Classroom allows teachers to see pupils working during online sessions and let the teacher set work that needs to be competed online.

Pupils can share their work with teachers so that teachers can see the work that they are doing. If pupils are using the paperwork sheets the work can be photographed to be shared with the teacher.

If you have any concerns about your child’s engagement you can share this during a welfare call or call or email the school to talk about this.

If the school has any concerns about your child’s work, we will call or email you about this


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:

Teachers will give verbal feedback to pupils in lesson or in special work feedback sessions. 

Google Classroom also allows teachers to write or record messages for pupils

Worksheets from printed packs can be shared on Google classroom so teacher can mark them or give verbal feedback.  Any which are posted or brought to school will only be marked when the teacher is next able to access them.  As teachers are providing remote learning they too are mainly working from home in line with government guidelines

Tests and quizzes can be marked on Google Classroom

Teacher, where possible teachers will try to give feedback immediately or soon after they have seen the work.  In line with the school’s marking policy not every piece of work will have written feedback, most of this feedback will be verbal.


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?

During the current lockdown the provision provided to pupils in school and working remotely is the same.  When the majority of pupils return to school this provision will change for those who remain in shielding or are self-isolating.  Teachers who are teaching on site will try to include pupils working remotely where possible.  However, this will not always be possible e.g. PE and subjects that require specialist spaces or resources like many Science lessons.  Where possible teachers will try to provide an alternative activity to help pupils maintain and develop the same key learning. 

Pupils working remotely will be invited to weekly, or more regular, welfare hangouts with friends and to join in class discussion and learning where possible.  Remote learning activities will be provided by the teachers via Google Classroom or in work packs posted home.

If any parent is concerned about any aspect of remote learning or about the physical, mental or emotional wellbeing if their child please let us know as soon as possible.  We are here to help you though this very difficult time but we can only help when we know help is needed.  There are some things we can’t change, like self-isolation periods, but we can adapt what we are doing to better support.


January 2021