Wednesday 3rd February 2021
Dear parent / carer,
Thank you to everyone who completed our recent survey concerning online learning. We had over 170 responses with an even breakdown from across the school. Having reviewed the document with staff and Governors I would like to take this opportunity to share the main themes with you and explain our next steps;
From those who responded;
- 86% of parents surveyed believed that their child is enjoying engaging through Tapestry or Seesaw
- over 90% of parents found the teaching easy to follow and activities were well chosen to support the learning.
- 97% of families already had the technology at home needed to access learning
- Over 90% of those responding were aware of the opportunity to get devices through school
When parents were asked to comment on the positive parts of the online learning so far, the vast majority were quick to highlight the ease with how Seesaw can be used and the feedback comments that the staff were leaving for the children. Below are some representative examples of parental comments;
“Timetable to follow and plan for week is helpful.”
“Seesaw is easy to use.”
“It has been lovely to see how much he has learned already in school. I am constantly impressed with his level of knowledge that I wouldn’t ordinarily see.”
“Love Seesaw as a platform – really easy to use. Love the daily tasks set by staff – really clear. Love the daily story – this is very much enjoyed by the girls. Love voice instruction on slides/links to websites and love the voice feedback too – makes learning more personal.”
When asked what parents feel would improve the current offer there were again some clear themes coming out from the comments submitted;
- Whilst parents were really happy with Seesaw, there can be issues with the texts – having to zoom in or writing on the actual documents
- Difficulty in getting children to engage with devices (concentration levels etc.)
- Technical issues – particularly for Early Years children (Tapestry)
- Feeling cut off from the school community
Therefore, when considering these themes, to support parents at home we will;
- Consider the activities/text etc. we are posting to ensure that they are a size easy enough to see without having to zoom in
- Continue to ensure that there are a range of activities that involve engaging with activities on the screen and also working practically away from the screen
- Continue to email the links to Reception parents as well as placing on Tapestry to ensure parents can access no matter what
- Continue to offer class zoom calls each week. We had a fantastic up take for these last week and hope these can continue throughout the rest of lockdown
- We will organise other events on the coming weeks such as Daft as a Brush day to support further engagement and develop a sense of community.
- Weekly virtual Golden Assemblies to celebrate achievement and encourage and enthuse pupils.
- Provide further support for parents
Several parents asked why we are not offering ‘live’ lessons during this period. As a school, the decision was taken not to do these for several reasons. Primarily we believe that offering the recorded version gives parents and children the flexibility to engage with the learning when is best suited to their own situation. When a great number of parents and siblings will be working from home and needing access at similar times. This way children do not feel as if they are missing out on anything.
At present our staff are working exceptionally hard to provide both face-to-face and online lessons and deliver good quality feedback to all pupils. This also enables staff to teach their specific year groups curriculum objectives to ensure clear progression of learning and therefore limiting the possibility of lost learning during this time.
Whilst the above actions are ones we have or can put in place quickly and easily, many parents also commented that they have difficulty in motivating their child. This is not as easy or straightforward to solve. Lack of engagement and motivation is not surprising when we consider that the once clear lines between school and home have become completely blurred for children. Being used to having your friends and peers around you to talk to and play with has been replaced with a computer screen and the members of your immediate family only.
It is essential to remember you can only do your best and the children will have highs and lows in their engagement with the online learning. Make the most of the times they are enjoying and really wanting to participate and keep the other times to a minimum. Whilst we need everyone to keep doing what they can to ensure the children don’t miss out on too much learning remember that, when this is all over and the children return to school, we will do everything in our power to get them to where they need to be. That is what we do, that is what we are trained for and we will move heaven and earth to ensure that each child gets to where they need to be at the end of the year.
Thank you again to those of you who completed the survey. Please keep doing whatever you can, stay safe and if there is anything that you are concerned about or are not sure of please contact school. We are here to support you as best we possibly can.
As you will be all too aware, the government have suggested we are working towards the provisional date of Monday 8th March for a return to school. Following the review which is to take place during the half term holiday, should things change and be extended please be assured that we will review our online offer and ensure that we are adapting to meet the needs of the children.
Finally, the Governors, staff and I would like to take this opportunity to thank every single one of you for your continuous support during these very challenging times. You are all doing a fantastic job!
Mr T Jones