Virtual Learning Curriculum
During the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, we have been requested to close the school by the government from 23rd March 2020, except for small numbers of children in specific groups.
Years 11 and 13 had their last day in school on 20th March 2020 and all examinations due for the summer have been cancelled. The current Department for Education guidance can be found here.
Each school has responded to this crisis (with 48 hours notice!) in different ways that are appropriate to their own situation. Although the government have stated that delivering an online education is not an expectation, we are in the fortunate position of all of our students having access to devices and teachers who have some experience of educational technology via our Blended Learning Programme. We have worked to develop a ‘Virtual Learning Curriculum’ that tries to balance the needs of everyone in our school community:
- A need to sustain some learning, but in changed circumstances that can’t fully replicate school
- Awareness that home environments differ. Need for safeguarding.
- Wellbeing. Acknowledging wider stress of situation, being away from friends and moderating the amount of screen time.
- Balancing childcare and own work demands.
- Managing workload and wellbeing of their children.
- Expectations of ‘home-schooling’, motivating students to engage.
- Professional development needs in new remote teaching tools and pedagogy.
- Many Sandringham staff have their own young families to care for during the school day.
- Planning and resource development takes much more effort than delivering in a classroom (x2 or x3 reported)
In designing the Virtual Learning Curriculum, we have also used our expertise as a Research School to follow the evidence on what works best for remote learning. The Education Endowment Foundation in their evidence review found that the quality of teaching was more important than if it was synchronous in a ‘live’ teacher-led lesson or asynchronous. They further found that the best remote learning approach will vary depending on content and student, and collaboration with peers and support for students to work independently are also effective strategies.
With this in mind, we have adopted the following overall Virtual Learning Curriculum structure, but have supported each Director of Learning to choose the approach, timing, resources and tools that work best for their subject.
|Year group||VLC details|
|Year 7 and 8||Following the timetable structure, but reduced number of lessons in the Core subjects to create some space. Faculties encouraged to set projects or tasks than span multiple lessons. Limited number of synchronous ‘live lessons’. A goal to have 2-3 hours of learning per day averaged out across the week.|
|Year 9||A fuller timetable with more synchronous live lessons, but the two hours of Y9 modular curriculum removed (other than Spanish for dual linguists)|
|Year 10 and 12||Follow the timetable, a mix of synchronous ‘live lessons’ and asynchronous lessons to sustain engagement. Homework or independent learning tasks for outside lesson times may be set. Regular knowledge checks and feedback from teachers. Y10 and 12 are priority groups if there is a phased school return.|
|Year 11 and 13||No expectation of further exam related work, enriching ‘bridging’ work has been supplied that prepares for the next stage: https://aatsandringham.wpengine.com/covid-bridging-work/
Y11 will be issued with BSV Summer Work on Y12 Induction day.
|All years||A programme that includes physical exercise ideas, assemblies, remote careers guidance, virtual choir and dance, wellbeing resources and specific support for SEND and Pupil Premium students|
Phase 4 VLC
|1||1st June||Normal VLC|
|2||8th June||Normal VLC|
|3||15th June||e-week||• Whole timetable suspended for everyone.|
• There will be a separate e-week timetable of activities for each year group (detail after half term). Whilst following this e-week curriculum, there will also be individual meetings.
• Y 7,8 and 9 – all students will have an individual virtual meeting with their tutor to discuss progress in all subjects and check on well-being.
• Y 10 – will be invited in for a personal one-to-one meeting in school with their tutor.
• Y12 – will be invited in for a personal one-to one meeting in school with their tutor.
• Y12 – some will be invited in for an interview for the positions of Head Girl and Head Boy.
|4||22nd June||Modified VLC Sixth Form Induction||Normal delivery for most of the week however some staff may be involved in the new sixth form induction process and unavailable for live lessons.|
|5||29th June||Modified VLC Arts Week||Normal VLC sessions 1 – 4 each day.|
Suspend timetable session 5 each day to allow for arts based activities. Separate programme to follow.
|6||6th July||Modified VLC Fit for Life Week||Normal VLC on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Timetable suspended on Wednesday and Friday. Wednesday – SPORTS DAY for everyone linked to House Points as usual. Separate programme to come. Friday – CHARITY RUN for everyone – FANCY DRESS and raising funds for MIND. Details to be posted later but we would like you all to run 5km and track this on a device.|
|7||13th July||Modified VLC Prize-giving assemblies||Normal VLC for most of week.|
Virtual Prize Giving for each year group END OF YEAR
In addition to the above, we are considering more face to face meetings with year 10 and 12 students later in the half term. These would be to prepare year 10 and 12 for progression into year 11 and 13 next autumn. Since our VLC is working so well, there is no need to call students in en-masse for lessons in school. However, anyone not fully engaging with the VLC may have to come in for additional work
All lesson materials will be posted via Google Classroom, with all live lessons taking place via Google Meet. Parents can access their children’s timetable via My Child at School. During this time, we will not be setting homework for students in years 7-9, so Show My Homework will not be used. Parents can also access rewards information such as Postcards Home via My Child at School.
Currently, engagement in remote learning is around 85-90%, with year 12 over 98%. The best thing that you can do to support your child is to establish routines and check in with them regularly. We can say that the response ‘I haven’t been given any work to do’ is almost certainly not true and deserves further exploration, but we have highlighted some resources below that can be used to supplement work being issued by Sandringham if there is a need. If you child is not attending ‘live’ lessons or hasn’t submitted work due, you may get an SMS message or phone call from a teacher or Performance Director for the year group to check on their engagement.
You may find some statistics from the first few weeks of the Virtual Learning Curriculum interesting
Please find some guides below on how to use the main tools (Google’s GSuite for Education) that we will be using during this period of closure, and some other materials on conduct and tips for successful remote learning.
- Parents’ Guide to Google Classroom
- Top 10 tips for remote learning (parents)
- Department for Education recommended resources (primary and secondary)
- Resources to support home learning routines from the Education Endowment Foundation
- Virtual Learning Curriculum code of conduct
- Student Guide to virtual learning
- Student Guide to Google Meet
- Top tips for remote learning (students)
- Sanctuary Club Newsletter
If you find that you have run out of things to do: