Remote Learning Provision
Information for parents
This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to pupils and parents/carers about what to expect from remote education if local restrictions require entire cohorts (or bubbles) to remain at home, or if we have to ask students to self-isolate due to a positive case of COVID-19 in school.
The Remote curriculum: what is taught to pupils at home?
Our approach to remote learning focuses around ensuring we are providing focused teaching, and enabling students to continue to make progress in their studies. At The Holmesdale School this is centred around The Holmesdale Home Style.
A student’s initial days 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. However, it is important that students can continue the previously planned sequence of our curriculum to allow students to continue to make progress in all subjects whether they are working remotely at home or still able to attend school.
Google Classroom is used to communicate all lesson resources and opportunities for our students. This is the platform where homework and lesson resources are set to allow students to independently continue their studies, take a flipped learning approach to their studies, and access their learning is needing to work remotely from home. Teachers, daily will set work as per student timetables. Resources provided will be accompanied by pre-recorded lessons which will support all students to complete lesson activities. Live lessons are also part of the remote learning experience provided by The Holmesdale School and complement the work set for students. Students are expected to follow their usual school timetable with the live lesson timetable to complement and enrich their remote learning.
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 broadly the same length lessons would equate to as if they were in school and as such they follow their usual timetable. Teachers will set work for each lesson in line with your child’s timetable. Lessons are 55 minutes long so activities set will broadly equate to this, however we understand working from home will require students to establish a remote learning routine and this is considered in the variety of learning opportunities for our students.
Accessing remote education
How will my child access any online remote education you are providing?
Our remote learning platforms are:
- Google Classroom
In order to access this at home, student will need a device that can access the Internet, such as a laptop, desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone.
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 access to the Internet or an electronic device and ask that you make us aware as soon as possible so we can help and support you using THS_Office@swale.at or through communication via the school office.
We take the following approaches to support those pupils to access remote education:
- We have devices available for students to borrow. This can be discussed following communication using the following link Reporting Remote Learning Issues
- We also provide paper based work packs, and revision booklets to support students
- If students are not able to submit their work online via Show My Homework or direct to their teacher’s school email accounts, students can take advantage of the drop box at the school following government guidelines on social distancing or send their work for teacher feedback, or can keep it safely at home and hand it in to their relevant teachers when they return to school.
How will my child be taught remotely?
We use a combination of the following approaches to teach pupils remotely:
- All lesson materials and resources are provided for student completion via Google Classroom. These are created using The Holmesdale Home Style, and are differentiated to support the progress of all students;
- All homework materials, quizzes and spelling tests are set and marked on Google Classroom
- During extended remote learning periods, teachers will create recorded lessons to set the context of the lesson, make links to previous learning, support, model and will guide students through well planned lessons. These lessons will be uploaded to Google Classroom daily based on student timetables.
- During extended remote learning periods, live Lessons will be conducted by the school. These predominantly will be full taught lessons, however where vocational and practical subjects are delivered these may be smaller seminar style or drop in support sessions which focus on support or feedback for students.
- Staff may share information relating to supporting materials and websites, such as BBC Bitesize, where appropriate and will be designed to complement, and not replace the learning provision outlined above.
For students who find Google Classroom difficult to navigate or do not have access to computer or Internet, printed paper packs are available to support your child’s learning. These packs can be posted home as requested, however if your child has previously received a work pack they will receive these again in the case of a cohort, or bubble approaching remote learning.
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?
It is important that all students engage in their remote education so that they continue to make good progress. Where possible we would expect them to log onto Google Classroom on a daily basis, and complete the lessons and learning activities set for them by their teachers. If they have questions or have difficulties, teachers are contactable via Google Classroom or their swale.at email.
We understand that if the situation arises where your child is asked to self isolate, which can be at short notice, it may present some challenges. We kindly ask for your support so we can continue to provide high quality education for your child during this time.
We do not expect parents/carers to take the place of our teachers or monitor them completing the remote education we are providing. However, it would be really helpful if you can communicate any difficulties so we can support you, and ask that you take an active role in setting set up their day, ask them about their day and what they have learnt from the work they have completed.
If possible, we would recommend creating a quiet learning space where your child can work without interruptions if they are working at home. Other approaches which will support home learning is to:
- Try to encourage your child to be ready and dressed for the start of the school day, and to keep to their timetable;
- Distinguish between weekdays and weekends, and make it clear when the school day is over, to separate home and school life;
- Plan breaks and exercise into the day to help keep your child active.
Parents/carers will all have access to Google Classroom once set up has been completed, which will inform you of work completed and/or deadlines missed by your child.
Your child’s tutor and Student Support Manager will also be available via email and will be in contact with you during an extended period of absence or school closure in line with government guidelines. These member of staff are the student’s first port of call if they have general questions or well-bring concerns. Your child’s year group Learnign Leaders are also contactable via email or through the school office.
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
Our staff will be online, checking and updating Google Classroom on a daily basis. In addition, it is expected that all students complete a daily morning attendance and welfare check. Students received this via their school email account from 8am. All students are required to complete this between 8am – 9:15am every day. The pastoral team will use this data and contact students who have not ‘attended’ to ensure that firstly, everything is ok and secondly that there are no issues accessing our virtual school.
During live lessons, students will be interacting with the class teachers. Please be aware teachers may contact you if they feel there is a lack of engagement during these sessions.
Finally, a key part of our remote learning requirements is the submission of work. This is vital and should take place following live lessons, and following recorded lessons communicated on Google Classroom. It is through this platform which we expect students to submit their work. In order to ensure students are making progress, if work is not submitted to teachers, you will receive a text message alerting you to the missed deadline.
There will then be 2 days in which the work can be submitted. If work is still not submitted, the teacher will contact you with further details. If after this communication work is still outstanding, students will be asked to come into school daily from that point forward to complete all work. This will then be reviewed on a weekly basis, with the decisions to return to remote learning made by members of the senior team.
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.
It is an expectation that marking, assessment and feedback will follow the usual cycle for Key Stage 4 and 5. This means that work is assessed, and diagnostic feedback provided, on a two weekly cycle. For Key Stage 3, during remote learning, this is every three weeks. Where students are in school, work will be completed and feedback provided in exercise books. For students who are not in school, work should be submitted via our online platform, and feedback will be provided there.
Through our online platform of Google Classroom, teachers will also be able to send messages to individuals or groups of students, and can respond to questions. While accessing the live lessons, students can virtually raise their hand, ask questions or use the chat facility, and teachers will answer these as soon as they are able. Students may receive more detailed feedback via lessons dedicated to reflection and improvement, and a chance to redraft and refine their work. Live lessons and recorded lessons supports this approach.
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:
- Contact from the SENCO to discuss concerns with parents, and provide a centralised place for support;
- A year group based Teaching Assistant will contact the student and/or parent regularly, at least once a week, often more, to check for issues and provide support;
- For classes where a Teaching Assistant is normally supporting, they will be in live lessons to support them in support student progress and answer questions relating to lesson and learning tasks;
- Intervention provision such as Lexia is delivered remotely to support student progress
- All lesson materials are differentiated and provide appropriate support to the needs of students in that class. The teacher may, if appropriate, provide a supporting recorded lesson to assist with explanation, modelling and demonstration.
Remote education for self isolating pupils
In some cases, individual students need to self-isolate but the majority of their peer group remains in school. In this situation students will access lesson resources via Google Classroom as described above. These will be the same as the resources used in the ‘physical lesson’, and will follow the Holmesdale Home Style. They will be able to submit work, ask questions to their teachers, and receive feedback in line with the usual marking cycle via Google Classroom.
Expectations for teaching staff who are self-isolating;
Unfortunately, we do have times when a member of staff is self-isolating. If they are unwell resources will be provided, where possible, by other members of the department. Any lesson resources or pre-recorded videos which have been produced by other members of the department may be utilised to support this.
If the member of staff is well enough to be working from home, they will continue to upload resources to Google Classroom. Where possible these will be supported by a pre-recorded video which can be played by the cover teacher in the classroom, or viewed by students who are also isolating, ensuring that the students gain input from their teacher, and that the Holmesdale Home Style and expectations remain clearly visible.
Please keep in touch with us and do let us know if you’re having any difficulties with remote learning, or if you have any questions.
If your child experiences issues or cannot access Live Lessons, Google Classroom or the daily Attendance and Welfare Check, please email:
or contact the school for assistance if you cannot find the solution on the school website. Finally, if you experience issues, have any accessibility issues or wish to inform us that you do not wish your child to be involved in live lessons, please use this link Reporting Remote Learning Issues. This link is also on the school website.