With schools reopening Headteachers are juggling remote and in-class learning. Creating a hybrid education solution to meet the needs of an ever changing landscape.
What a tumultuous time for anyone involved in education right now. The 1st June marked the reopening of some UK schools for selected year groups. For school staff the half term was spent completing risk assessments, preparing class rooms and communal areas for social distancing. UK staff grateful for the insights gained from their overseas peers that reopened a few weeks back.
In the UK there are 700,000 students who haven’t had any kind of lesson since late March. The majority however have had access to some kind of remote learning. Here at Classlist we are seeing some fantastic examples of parents filling the gap by pooling resources and sharing their experiences of the multitude of online products available for free during lockdown.
Hybrid education solution
No matter the geography, no schools are operating with full attendance. Hence the term hybrid education is emerging. Both online and offline lessons are being offered to ensure that children aren’t missing out.
In the case of private schools, particularly those that have foreign pupils this is becoming a unique selling point a differentiator. In a market where private school pupil intakes are shrinking.
Both public and private schools are trying to work out how to divide their resources across remote, online, offline and in-class learning. Last week schools were surveying parents to work out how many children were likely to attend to help with teacher resourcing levels.
Now that many schools are continuing with ‘remote learning (note distinction from online) at the same time, consulting with parents on their experience so far has been essential for understanding what pupils and parents value. For instance, the extent of live vs recorded learning. Online tools vs printable documents. The quality and regularity of feedback to pupils and parents.
Leading schools are finding their parent community is a highly cost effective way of working out how to improve their beta ‘remote schooling product’. Even those schools that had invested in online learning prior to lockdown, their solutions weren’t put to the test of scaling across all students and subjects.
All agree that schools have put together prototype or ‘beta’ type solutions in rapid time. Setting a positive growth mindset example to their pupils: rolling out a new kind of education by focus, hard work and learning by doing. Like all good product development version 1:0 is what they call minimum viable. After half term school leaders are listening and making further iterations (version 1.5) following consultation with both pupils and parents.
Consulting parents not only provides just feedback. Involving them in your hybrid education solution converts your parent base from consumers into collaborators. From grumblers to contributors.
Two practical ways of collaborating:
The two most common ways we are seeing here at Classlist, that school communities collaborating are by surveying and sharing. Here are some popular tools being used by staff and PTAs.
Wiki tools: For pooling resources. This can be a section on your school website, shared on Classlist with links to other free repository tools. Our favourites are:
- Nuclino Cool interface. Need to check your situation and whether your needs would kick in to the premium version.
- Google drive Not exactly a wiki but a useful collaboration tool
- Dropbox Similar to Google
- Docuwiki Old fashioned interface but it works. Opensource so it’s free without limitations
Survey tools: Many schools are issuing surveys to learn how they can improve their initial offer and capture any good ideas. Particularly from the many families that may be experiencing remote learning from more than one school. An important question “Any ideas that work elsewhere?” is a great way to learn from other schools. Make sure you share the results. Including those ideas that are especially popular and that you can make a quick win by implementing.
Our favourite survey tools:
For further examples of what Classlist members are talking about go to What’s Trending in School Communities.