Coed Glas Primary School Online Learning and Blended Learning Policy
Welsh Government guidance (https://gov.wales/keep-education-safe-guidancelearning-over-summer-term) states that as we begin to think about learning and teaching for the next school year, schools should consider, “a blend of ‘in school’ and ‘out of school’ learning driven by a single curriculum: learners should not expect or experience two parallel curriculums, but practitioners will need to think how learning outside the classroom supports the valuable and limited contact time.”
United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
As a Rights Respecting School, this policy reflects the following articles, whether the children are in school or at home:
Article 28: Every child has the right to a good quality education.
Article 29: Your education should help you use and develop your talents and abilities. It should help you to live peacefully, protect the environment and respect other people
Article 23: You have the right to special education and care if you have a disability, so that you can live a full life.
Statement of Intent:
This policy will outline the types and methods of online and blended learning, provide guidance on the approaches that should be taken by staff, pupils and parents; and, aim to ensure consistency of approach within and across all phases.
We will continue to provide engaging, exciting and challenging learning opportunities, both in school and at home, which result in ambitious, capable learners, committed to lifelong learning. Additionally, the well-being of pupils and staff is a significant consideration; it is recognised that learning can give a sense of purpose and achievement which is good for mental well-being. The policy sets out how we will achieve an efficient blend of in-school and at-home learning, thus
allowing pupils to make progress.
Definition of Blended Learning:
"At its simplest, blended learning is the thoughtful integration of classroom face-to-face learning experiences with online learning experiences." [Garrison and Kanuka, 2004]. This means that time spent learning in the classroom will introduce key concepts, new content and skills; address misconceptions; answer questions; and, set clear expectations and guidelines for the work to be completed at home.
However, it should be noted that the learning that takes place at home will take a variety of forms and will not be restricted to online provision.
Definition of Online Learning:
Education that takes place over the internet. It is often referred to as e- learning among other terms. However, online learning is just one type of “distance learning”
- Ensure consistency in the school’s approach to online and blended learning
- Set out expectations for all members of the school community
- Allow children to develop independent study skills
- Encourage children to be creative and show responsibility for their own learning
- Provide useful information for parents on their children’s learning and ways to help
- Allow parents to cooperate, support and show interest in their children’s work
- Create home and school dialogue
Learning is not confined to the school day or to a particular approach. It is an ongoing, integrated approach which is supported by teachers, parents/carers and others, as well as by having varied experiences and the use of relevant resources, including ICT. Coed Glas Primary Schools’ approach is that online learning is a vehicle to support teaching and learning and to ensure that we meet our aims. Face-to-face learning and online learning should complement each other and be driven
by a single curriculum.
Learners will be provided with opportunities to develop learning in accordance with the Four Purposes of the Curriculum for Wales. There are opportunities to develop numeracy, literacy and digital competence (DCF) skills. All activities are to be planned and delivered in line with current operational guidance and the schools’ risk assessment.
In the event of school closure, this policy will allow staff to keep in daily contact in a professional and confidential manner with their classes and schedule learning in a manner that does not overwhelm children or families. Teaching and learning can be tailored, changed and updated as time progresses, allowing for alignment with activity and learning outcomes. In all communications we will prioritise the wellbeing of our school community.
All teaching staff will be provided with an appropriate ICT device to enable them to support the children remotely.
The school will maintain a register of children who do not have an appropriate ICT device to access their blended learning activities at home.
Should any child (ren) need to be at home for any period of time, an appropriate device will be provided by the school wherever possible. Parents/carers will be asked to agree an ‘Acceptable Use’ agreement prior to any device being taken home from the school.
We will follow the Welsh Government guidance as defined in the document ‘Stay safe, stay learning’ (https://gov.wales/sites/default/files/publications/2020-04/stay-safe-stay-learning-continuity-of-learning-policy-statement_0.pdf)
All staff will maintain their responsibilities as detailed in the school’s Safeguarding Policy ( https://primarysite-prod-sorted.s3.amazonaws.com/coed-glas-primay-school/UploadedDocument/3f7e7113b5f54b9a98c1ab2fe0fad1c8/child-protection-policy-2019-2020.pdf)
All staff will follow the Welsh Government guidance as defined in the document ‘Live-streaming and video-conferencing: safeguarding principles and practice’ (https://hwb.gov.wales/zones/keeping-safe-online/live-streaming-and-video-conferencing-safeguarding-principles-and-practice/)
Our draft Live Streaming and Video Conferencing Policy (https://primarysite-prod-sorted.s3.amazonaws.com/coed-glas-primay-school/UploadedDocument/9e0ecff2ced44ee6b9637eaef8047c1f/live-streaming-and-video-conferencing.pdf)
Safeguarding - Practical application
The school will:
- Ensure that all staff are reminded of safeguarding policies and procedures and in particular any changes.
- Remind all staff of their responsibilities to record and report any safeguarding concerns to the DSP via MyConcerns.
- Support all staff to understand their role in teaching online safety through the curriculum and activities that they deliver.
- Reinforce staff awareness of the need for appropriate professional behaviours whilst online
- Provide support routes for staff, children and young people to obtain support for technology issues when accessing content online.
- Be mindful that not all children and young people will have unlimited bandwidth or technology available at all times of day.
- Ensure that children and young people with ALN are considered in the planning and their access to blended learning accommodated.
Roles and responsibilities
- The governors’ first concern is staff and pupil wellbeing.
- Governors support the headteacher to articulate that vision of all staff and be clear about expectations.
- Governors support the headteacher to communicate expectations of ‘Stay Safe. Stay Learning’ to parents/carers. In doing this, school remains mindful of the unprecedented circumstances and the wide range of issues that families may be dealing with
- Governors clearly communicate what support is available from the school and signpost to other relevant organisations or support.
- Governors support the headteacher in being clear about the support that is available to staff in the school.
- Governors support the headteacher to consider the school policies to be reviewed during this period. These can include home and flexible working, use of digital technology, safeguarding and continuity of learning.
The Headteacher will:
- Be mindful that teachers’ workload should not be increased during this period and for all communication and workload to be negotiated and agreed with staff. Teachers who are able to work will be focusing on the children in their care and/or working from home on resources.
- Provide all staff with access to appropriate wellbeing support through Carefirst and the Local Authority’s Occupational Health Service.
- Ensure plans are in place to deal with pupil queries when teachers are ill or otherwise unable to work
- Ensure plans pay regard to all safeguarding elements of Welsh Government (WG) guidance on blended learning.
- Ensure there are clear systems and protocol for communication with parents and teachers.
- Agree platforms for staff to use and share information and resources, for example, Google Drive.
- Ensure the quality of work being provided is monitored.
- Ensure any contact between pupils and teachers will only be through a platform provided by the school and not through personalised accounts open to public viewing, comments or sharing.
- Ensure staff respond to pupils’ queries, ensuring parents/carers and pupils have reasonable expectations of the speed with which staff respond.
- Instruct staff not to exchange personal email addresses or phone numbers with pupils (again, paying regard to safeguarding guidance issued by the LA).
- Ensure any equipment provided by the school is for work purposes only and there are shared agreements in place for pupils and parents on what behaviour and contact is appropriate, with clear sanctions for misuse.
- Encourage teachers to set some activities that pupils can complete on their own in recognition that many parents/carers are also trying to work from home and might struggle to assist with schoolwork for a number of reasons. Parents are not expected to become teachers.
- Only be expected to work from school/home if well.
- Take care of their safety, physical and mental health.
- Carry out a reasonable workload when working at home.
- Contact pupils and families according to school protocol.
- Provide a variety of learning tasks across all areas of learning recognising that there will be a maximum number of hours of ‘learning’ per day which keeps children’s minds active but enthusiastic. Many of the learning tasks will be provided to allow a ‘flexible’ timetable for children to complete. It is educational to help with household activities such as washing, cooking and gardening; as is watching some informative television programmes or online streams, such as documentaries and drama.
- Consider what learning is appropriate to their learners based on: Maintaining and developing literacy, numeracy and digital skills and building resilience, reflection and independence.
- Ensure blended learning includes physical activities that learners could undertake at home or in line with health and social distancing guidance at that time.
- Engage in professional learning opportunities to improve subject knowledge or aspects of pedagogy, and engage in discussions with colleagues.
Parents and Carers should:
- Understand there is no expectation on them to ‘home school’. The parent/carer’s role is to support home learning, help their child build resilience and develop self-regulation skills, promote independence and encourage a ‘have a go’ attitude. For example, helping their child to devise a timetable that includes regular breaks and is mindful of their child’s mental and physical well-being. The aim is to work with the school to help the child develop as a lifelong learner.
- Understand that if staff are unwell, they cannot provide work or communicate with pupils and families
- Realise that many of the learning opportunities provided will be about consolidating what children already know and practising skills. Developing language and literacy skills takes time so realise you don’t feel you have to do it all
- Review resources made available on Hwb, available as links and downloadable documents e.g. from Google Classroom, Seesaw, Class Dojo as provided by school staff
- Recognise that getting children to help with household activities such as washing, cooking and gardening are educational; as is watching some appropriate, beneficial television programmes or online streams, such as documentaries and drama
Priorities for learning
- Health and well-being: learning will support learners’ mental, emotional, physical and social well-being as well as recognising the importance of outdoor learning and play.
- Purpose: all learning will have a clear purpose in mind, focused around what is important for learners now and in the longer-term.
- Literacy, numeracy and digital competence: learners will have opportunities to develop and apply these skills across the curriculum
- Broad and balanced: learners will have learning experiences which span a broad curriculum and which includes opportunities to develop a breadth of understanding and a range of knowledge and skills.
- Progression and assessment: learners will make meaningful progress throughout this period. Learning will be designed to consolidate existing knowledge and skills, and support increasing depth and sophistication of learning over time. We encourage the use of assessments to help learners move to the next steps in their learning.
- Partnership with parents, carers and learners: We will develop a common understanding and language with parents, carers and learners, this can help underpin learning and support learning experiences.
- Health & well-being
The ongoing pandemic means that learners may continue to spend varying amounts of time learning remotely. Learners who are not content, safe and secure will not learn effectively.
We will support our pupils’ mental and emotional well-being that is appropriate to the age and stage of the learners. Examples include:-
- Daily check-ins
- High pupil staff ratios to support and address pupils’ needs
- Wellbeing and self-regulating zones for pupils
- Access to appropriate agencies
- Positive relationships with parents/carers and effective systems of communication
- Daily Relax and Refuel time
We will support our pupils’ physical well-being that is appropriate to the age and stage of the learners. Examples include:-
- Mindfulness activities
- Outdoor physical education sessions
- Outdoor Health and Well-being lessons
- Literacy, numeracy and digital competence
We understand the needs of our learners. We know what knowledge, skills and dispositions we want our learners to develop. Learning will focus on raising standards in literacy, numeracy and digital competence. These skills, for the foundations of learning and are essential for learners to be able to unlock knowledge.
An adapted approach to learning in Coed Glas Primary School will provide authentic opportunities to develop and apply literacy, numeracy and digital skills, embedded in all learning across a broad and balanced curriculum. We will use a wide range of topics, activities and resources to develop knowledge and skills. It is important that these skills are embedded within other broader learning rather than seeking to apply them in isolation to wider learning.
This will include opportunities across learning time to:
- Develop listening, reading, speaking and writing skills
- Apply numeracy and solve problems in real-life situations
- Use a range of technologies to function, communicate and make sense of the world.
- Progression and assessment
Over the course of the disruption caused by a full or partial school closure, our expectation is that all learners should continue to make meaningful progress.
Our staff will determine what the steps of progression are for our learners. The purpose of assessment is to support each individual learner to make progress at an appropriate pace, ensuring that they are challenged and supported appropriately.
We will use a range of means of assessment and feedback to help our learners make progress. Examples of assessment include:-
- Assessment of Big Maths tasks
- Assessment of Reading tasks
- Formative assessment of all learning activities to inform next steps
Examples of assessment include:-
- Face to face feedback on return to school
- Written online feedback (to parents or pupils)
- Termly report to parents
- Partnership with parents, carers and learners
Learners: Active engagement between the learner and staff regularly is at the heart of the learning process and is especially important as learners continue to learn in different places and take more ownership of their learning as a result.
Learners will be supported to develop self-regulation skills and to take responsibility for their learning, engaging in dialogue and communicating with staff regarding what they are learning, how they are learning and their progression in learning.
We will support all learners appropriately.
Parents and Carers:
The participation of parents and carers in learning is essential for developing learning experiences that involves learning inside and outside school. Parents and carers engaging with learner at all ages will help consolidate school-based learning. We will communicate with parents, carers and learners to understand their roles in this process.
Each day, learning activities in the relevant Areas of Learning and Experience will be posted on Class Dojo, Seesaw, or Google Classrooms. Families should view this together, and then make appropriate plans to complete the work.
In Spring 2021, individual year groups will be providing the following opportunities for all children:
The school will offer synchronous (live) and asynchronous (pre recorded / planned) lessons during the week. A typical day will look like this:
Parent/carer video uploaded each evening on Class Dojo.
Literacy including storytime
9.30 - 9.50 - Google Meet (Live registration and engage/talk through the days activities)
Complete activities from Class Dojo ‘Portfolio’ and access virtual classrooms for links to support learning.
2.45 - Assembly type session. Pre recorded activity from teachers/Story time/PSD/Welsh.
Call set up with parents via:
Virtual Classroom shared via:
Submit work using:
9.00 - 9.20 - Google Meet (live registration and engage/talk through the days activities)
Complete the tasks on the grid in our virtual classroom throughout the day.
2.45 - Meet to share and celebrate work / Storytime / Home learner of the day
Communicate with parents via
Virtual Classroom shared via:
Submit work using:
8.30 - 9.20 Numeracy
9.30 Teams Call
1.00 pm Topic Work
2.00 - Storytime on Teams (SD)
2.30 Storytime on Teams (LT)
9.30 Teams Call to introduce the day’s learning.
Complete tasks on Google Classroom throughout the day.
2.30 - Meet to share work and story.
9.00 Teams Meeting to go through the work for the day.
1.30 Teams Meeting to review the morning learning and explain the tasks for the afternoon.
Staff support the children throughout each session across the day.
9.00 Numeracy introduction
11.00 Literacy introduction
1.15 Topic introduction
2.30 Guided group reading introduction
9.00 ‘registration’ on Teams followed by Maths Lesson introduction.
11.00 Literacy introduction on Teams
13.00 Reg and afternoon lessons introduction on Teams
14.30 Guided group reading session on Teams