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Headteacher's Update: End of Half Term 1

As October half term approaches...

Dear St Anne's community - students (and alumni), parents, carers, staff and governors,

I am writing firstly to wish you well at this time.  There are those in our community suffering from Coronavirus or self-isolating and we want you to know that we are thinking of you.  Our Monday Morning Prayer that goes out on social media this week is dedicated until further notice to those of you suffering in any way in this pandemic.

I am also writing to thank our community for its understanding.  Understanding around staffing issues, bubbles being sent home and all of the issues that this must raise for you.  We continue to make decisions as carefully and as considerately as we are able to - but recognising the frustrations that this will also bring.  

The focus of this update is to highlight for you in particular our new and refined remote learning offer that will begin straight after the half term break.  As a parent myself, I know that as my children have too had to sit at home through burst bubbles, I want to make sure that there is quality work set.  Our new Senior Deputy Headteacher, Michelle Critchlow, has worked tirelessly with our Subject Leads on our new strategy which you can now read below.

I wish you a safe and happy half term, as best we all can.

Yours in Christ

Dan Wright, Headteacher

Remote Learning Strategy October 2020: Phase 1

In the event of any year group(s) being sent home to isolate for 2 weeks:

Class teachers will:

  1. Set work on Microsoft Teams from day 2. These will be tasks using Knowledge Organisers with some links to our Independent Learning Strategies.
  2. Set a specific assignment requiring submission via Teams x 1 per week
  3. Monitor submission and chase missing work as usual

Additionally:

  1. English, Maths and Science* teachers will also host a minimum of 2 live lessons per week via Microsoft Teams. Live lessons will only be offered for whole year group isolations that are longer than 3 days.
  2. English, Maths and Science will set tasks each week that reflect the content of the lessons for students that are having to individually self-isolating at different times. 

Live lessons

  1. The Head of Year will coordinate the live lesson timetable and share it via the school website and a text to parents on day 2 of the year group isolation. Live lessons will begin from day 3.  
  2. Teachers will report any student not engaging in/attending remote learning to the Head of Year and Pastoral Manager. Heads of year will work with Form Tutors and Pastoral Managers to contact home for students who are not engaging in/attending these lessons.
  3. Lessons will be taught by the class teacher to their own classes where possible
  4. Clear expectations around behaviour during live lessons are below. Failure to comply with these expectations will result in sanctions.
  5. Lessons will last 40 minutes
  6. Work should be completed in subject exercise books or the students’ independent study journals unless told otherwise

Accessing live lessons

Students will access live lessons using their Microsoft Teams account. If there are any technical difficulties with this, please contact itsupport@stannesrchighschool.onmicrosoft.com Lessons can be accessed from a desktop PC/Mac/tablet or mobile device, however having a larger screen would be beneficial.

 

In the event of individual students self-isolating, they should access the Maths, English and Science work that is set weekly in the Year group Team, use their Knowledge Organiser with the Independent Learning Strategies to complete retrieval tasks and contact teachers for support using Teams.

Expectations for Remote Learning: staff, students, parents/carers

The school/teachers will:

  • Audit student access to remote learning and provide support where available
  • Communicate a clear timetable for online learning via the website, texts home and Teams
  • Students will be made aware which member of staff they will be meeting in the live online lesson and which Team to access the lesson via – year Team or class Team
  • Staff will have a register to record the students who attend each lesson
  • Staff will use their school Teams account and school email to login
  • Staff will follow the structure outlined for live online lessons 
  • Ensure their camera is disabled so as only their screen and voice are shared
  • Staff will reinforce expectations of behaviour that they would in the physical classroom, in line with the school’s behaviour policy 
  • Record all live lessons and then upload them to the ‘Team’ for students to access after the lesson

Students will:

  • Be punctual and make sure that they have books /equipment ready for the lesson
  • find an appropriate place to base themselves for the lesson without lots of personal distractions
  • make sure that their device is charged and sign in using their St Anne’s 365 email account
  • communicate politely and thoughtfully, treating others with respect and patience, just as you would in the classroom
  • wait for their turn to share ideas
  • follow the instructions given by the member of staff throughout the live online lesson and ask for help if I need it
  • not use the share function
  • not record, take photographs or screenshots of the live online lesson or the lesson content
  • be responsible for their behaviour and actions whilst using Microsoft Teams
  • Immediately report anything they come across that upsets them whilst working online
  • contact their teacher via Teams or email if they need further support or clarity on the lesson content
  • Ensure their microphone and camera are off during the live lesson. Microphones should only be unmuted if asked specifically by the teacher
  • Use the ‘raise your hand’ function in teams and the team chat function to communicate with the teacher – sensible comments and questions only
  • Be aware that all content on Teams ‘chats’ is recorded and monitored
  • Understand that all live lessons are recorded
  • Submit work as requested

Parents/carers will:

  • support their child to consult the timetable on live lessons
  • download the Microsoft Teams App and endeavour to familiarise themselves and their child with how it works
  • ensure that equipment needed is charged prior to the live online lesson and support their child in finding a suitable space to work in that is conducive to learning
  • support the school’s behaviour policy, and respect decisions made to remove their child from a live online lesson if this occurs
  • appreciate that this removal could result in the live lessons offer being revoked

Independent Study - a further update from Ms Critchlow, Senior Deputy Headteacher

I am writing to you to offer guidance and clarify our expectations with regards to learning beyond the classroom at St Anne’s. This encompasses homework tasks which we now refer to as ‘Independent Study’ as well our Remote Learning provision in the event of students and whole year groups having to isolate due to COVID 19. 

Remote Learning

Please see attached Remote Learning strategy which details what provision we can offer to students who are either individually isolating or are sent home to isolate with their whole year group bubble. Our all work for remote learning is communicated via Microsoft Teams and students should use their school email for Office 365 to sign in. The work set is a mixture of tasks, live lessons and opportunities to ‘chat’ to their teachers and ask specific questions or for specific support for their work.

If your child has difficulty logging into Microsoft Teams we have created 2 'how to’ videos (see links below and also available on the school website) or students can email itsupport@stannesrchighschool.com.

Computer guide - https://youtu.be/zA0840i5cMI

Phone guide - https://youtu.be/Jo5GmP5J19k

Independent Study

Research focussing on the relationship between independent learning and student achievement has shown clear benefits, particularly for students at secondary school. We strongly believe that learning independently helps to embed knowledge and skills acquired in class and provides students with the opportunity to develop a crucial range of learning habits including independent thinking, memory, resilience and initiative. 

Why is independent study important? 

  • It develops collaboration, by involving parents and others in the learning process and provides an important motivational function.
  • It develops resilience by allowing students to develop their ability to work independently. 
  • It develops discipline, by allowing valuable practice and extension of skills, knowledge and understanding learned in the classroom. 
  • It develops imagination, by allowing students to use materials and other sources of information that are not always available in the classroom. 

Knowledge Organisers

Knowledge Organisers are content based resources that cover all the vital information being taught each term in each subject area for every year group. These vital resources serve to support students in completing pre-learning of topics that will be covered in lessons, revision of what has been covered in past lessons and support parents in engaging with specific subject content. Our Knowledge Organisers are accompanied by 8 Independent Learning Strategies that support students to interact successfully with the content in the Knowledge Organisers.

All students in years 7, 8 and 9 have been provided with a Knowledge Organiser booklet (additional copies of these are available from student services for a small charge) and students in years 10 and 11 have been provided knowledge organisers from each of their class teachers as well as a folder to store them in (again available from student services for a small charge). You can also access all Knowledge Organisers for every subject and every year group on the school website in the student section under Independent Study. 

Students should be working proactively to address their learning gaps, go back through their class notes, create resources for revision and build their long-term memory through regular revision and testing. The provision of Knowledge Organisers and Independent Learning Strategies that students can deploy at home, allow lots of opportunities for students to develop effective independent learning habits even in the absence of specific homework tasks. 

How can you help? 

Students will need to work more independently at secondary school as they move closer to their GCSE exams and your interest and input are vitally important in helping them to do well: 

1. Provide a quiet environment and necessary equipment; 

2. Have a regular independent study routine; 

3. Praise effort, rather than achievement; 

4. Show an interest (especially to support time management and attendance at live lessons) 

5. Use the Knowledge Organisers to test your child’s subject knowledge; 

6. Contact school if you have barriers to accessing Remote Learning or Independent study (for example, no access to a device, internet etc)

Thank you in anticipation of your full support. 

Please get in touch if you have any queries. 

Regards, 

Michelle Critchlow

Senior Deputy Headteacher