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Remote Learning Pastoral Support by Mr Leggett

Posted: 31st March 2020

Remote Learning Pastoral Support by Mr Leggett

At Skippers we are acutely conscious of the impact this virus is having on all of our community and greatly appreciate the support and understanding of families at this exceptional time; it has certainly  been an opportunity to pull together and support each other, reinforcing just what the Skippers community is all about. 

As with a snow day, many of our community may at first have been delighted to receive news of extra days off. The dawning reality, however, is very different and the atmosphere across the UK reflects the seriousness of the situation. The prolonged period away from school may cause anxiety in our community but the evidence of the first days of remote learning fills me with confidence that we will all get through these challenging times stronger as both individuals and as a community. 

I would like to share a number of the key lessons that we are learning through this experience. 

1. Technology supporting learning

It is clear that technology has reached a level that now enables high-quality learning at home. The virtual learning environments have been truly interactive, and ours is really coming into its own during this period with pupils and teachers both embracing Google meets / hangout every day. 

Remote learning is being used effectively to teach classes “face to face”, creating an opportunity for our students to work alongside their teacher and fellow classmates in an environment that closely resembles their normal classroom.

2. The importance of the human touch

Although we cannot currently put our students together physically with each other and their teachers, we can do our best to create situations that will provide much-needed pastoral care for our students during difficult times.

Our form tutors are striving to meet their classes every day, via Google meets, to check in on their home learning, and to provide that important smile of reassurance. They are encouraging our students to try to understand and reflect upon the situation we are in, and helping to continue to provide stability and routine for our pupils. 

I see our tutors and teaching staff reaching out to our families, to see how we can best support them and as senior leaders we are doing the same amongst our staff. 

This personal touch is a key difference between a school and an online learning environment and I am proud of the way that our teachers have shown that they understand our community and prioritise excellent relationships. 

This personal touch also encourages care and compassion for one another during difficult times and is as true for staff-to-staff relationships as it is between staff and students. We are all responsible for one another’s wellbeing. 

Please do follow our community’s progress using our social media channels on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Classlist, where the school will continue to share posts that connect us as a community.

I have attached some links to some online courses on mental wellbeing and anxiety for both parents and pupils that you may wish to use at home. 

David Leggett.

Parents

Mental Wellbeing

Understanding anxiety

Pupils

Mental Wellbeing 

Healthy Lifestyles

Understanding anxiety

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