Jump to content
Proudmumofdd

Vocational schools still shut??

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Pas de Quatre said:

It is so odd that when every dance teacher I know has managed to set up on line teaching and state schools can't. I thought my parents were being overly grateful in their thanks to me for doing it, now I understand why!

Schools have to consider whether all pupils will be able to access the learning if they go ‘live’. Households with more children than devices would find their children rapidly falling behind. Add to that the safeguarding minefield for teachers and students: seeing into each others’ homes, the ability to take screenshots or recordings of classmates and teachers etc etc and you can see why so many schools have said ‘no’ to live lessons. Schools deal with a much broader selection of children than dance schools, and have to ensure that everyone is safe. Being inclusive as a state school means that everyone needs to be able to access the learning. As a dance school, you already limit your cohort to one that can afford after-school activities, and are not legally obliged to ensure access for all.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, alison said:

 

And they're not alone.  I was talking to a GP a few weeks ago who was telling me that adapting to doing consultations from home/online is pretty stressful, too.  Apparently when they have the patient in front of them in surgery they are trained to think and react very quickly, but when it's online or telephone it requires a completely different, slower, type of thinking to make sure they've covered everything.  Or something like that.

This is interesting to me - I had a telephone conversation with my GP at the start of lockdown and he called me 2 weeks later to say that he had been thinking about our conversation and felt that he should have given different advice at the time. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Pas de Quatre said:

It is so odd that when every dance teacher I know has managed to set up on line teaching and state schools can't. I thought my parents were being overly grateful in their thanks to me for doing it, now I understand why!

 

I think there are a number of explanations in this thread about the difference between providing full-time online education for classes of 30+ pupils, for 6 hours per day 5 days a week. Some of those children will e unmotivated, will not have a quiet place for participation, nor even their own computer.  And many many more reasons. 

 

At my university we were given a day's notice of the university closing - around 16-17th of March. A week later the whole country was in lockdown. Next week I'm being allowed, for the first time, to go back to my office for 30 minutes to pick up anything else I might need. Although I'm not permitted to take my big fast two monitor computer set up. I've not been given headset, or upgraded laptop, or office chair ...

 

So there are real and multiple issues.

 

Compared with dance teachers teaching maybe 15 at most in a class of children who want to be there, for maybe 2 -4 hours, three or 4 times a week.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Kate_N said:

 

I think there are a number of explanations in this thread about the difference between providing full-time online education for classes of 30+ pupils, for 6 hours per day 5 days a week. Some of those children will e unmotivated, will not have a quiet place for participation, nor even their own computer.  And many many more reasons. 

 

 

 

There will indeed be many people who have problems accessing but does this mean nothing should be available for those who can?  I didn't say it had to be full time for 30+ at the same time.  Many state school pupils are getting nothing at all.  Smaller groups could be taught in "bubbles" (to use a current term).  Half a dozen pupils at a time for 30 minutes, a couple of times a week, would be better than nothing.  

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe dance teachers are a bit more motivated and able to find a solution because they are generally self employed? 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It simply isn’t accurate to say that ‘many state school pupils are getting nothing at all’. It is true that there is no ‘live’ provision, for all the reasons that I set out in my earlier post, but pupils have been set work since the beginning of lockdown, in line with recommendations. You must be able to see the difference between teaching in a state school and teaching dance classes, surely?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Setting work is not teaching though. it’s boring and Unmotivating  and not using teachers skills. I don’t understand why some are so adamantly against online teaching? Many private and some state schools are teaching a full timetable online, it’s difficult to understand why some schools are unable to provide anything? Pre-record material, use dial in via a phone, don’t enable video? Use a good interactive online program? Get the kids without internet into school in preference to others? If this is going to continue into the next academic year I think we urgently need to re-evaluate. and schools need extra funding to make it work.

teaching and talking to people online is generally harder than face to face but it is something we need to get to grips with, or we need to think how we can get all children back into full time school. 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s entirely different demographics. 
 

There was an incident at my daughter’s school with zoom teaching. Being the kind of school it is, senior management were allowed to take immediate & decisive Disciplinary action and I assume there was parental support. It was an isolated incident and very clear warnings were given of a zero tolerance policy. 
 

At my son‘s school half of the parents could not care less. There are many students who would not want teachers or others to see inside their homes. Parents and siblings who would not respect classroom rules with regards to appropriate dress and language. And any breaches would not be able to be acted upon. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Jewel said:

It’s entirely different demographics. 
 

There was an incident at my daughter’s school with zoom teaching. Being the kind of school it is, senior management were allowed to take immediate & decisive Disciplinary action and I assume there was parental support. It was an isolated incident and very clear warnings were given of a zero tolerance policy. 
 

At my son‘s school half of the parents could not care less. There are many students who would not want teachers or others to see inside their homes. Parents and siblings who would not respect classroom rules with regards to appropriate dress and language. And any breaches would not be able to be acted upon. 

Absolutely! Not to mention the children with turbulent home lives who would be afraid of this being exposed for their classmates to hear, even on an audio-only lesson. It’s not as simple as schools just not bothering.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But you can’t penalise the majority who could happily access remote learning. The video element is not required at all. A solution needs to be found for those who can’t access it at home, like provide school places to access the work. I would personally put those with turbulent home lives in the vulnerable category who should already be being encouraged into school. Which again some schools are doing a great job of but others have closed completely. We need to get a bit more creative if this is going to continue. I can’t find the national average for

kids who have engaged with any home school but it’s pretty low isn’t it? Ours was 80% which was well above the average so that’s 20% of the school have done none whatsoever. Some school will have the majority of kids having done nothing since March. Perhaps we just need to concentrate all efforts on re-opening, I don’t know. Something needs to change because what we have isn’t working

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Pas de Quatre said:

It is so odd that when every dance teacher I know has managed to set up on line teaching and state schools can't. I thought my parents were being overly grateful in their thanks to me for doing it, now I understand why!


For children in households with access to their own iPad/laptop throughout the school day I agree this would be ideal.  This would only be a very small minority at many schools so zoom/live lessons would not be feasible as the students just can’t access them.  Setting work online allows individual households to share the device time throughout the day. I have a childin my class with 3 siblings and their mum’s mobile phone is their only device with internet access. Her work is always submitted in the early evening. I am supplying printed work to many on a weekly basis too and also currently working full time in school with a keyworker group.
Zooming to a dance class isn’t really comparable. 

Edited by Millie3
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I disagree that the majority don’t have access to a device. Since lockdown many people have bought them as they’re necessary in a way they weren’t before. It’s been prioritised over other luxuries many of which aren’t available anyway- days out, holidays etc! I think we’re mainly talking about secondary schools for online learning, primary is a bit different and there would be lower numbers of phones and tablets. Some people will of course be on the bread line but also many parents will have a little extra money because they aren’t paying for school uniforms, transport to school etc. Parents also find change difficult and as a teacher I’m sure you’re well aware of who is doing the best they can and who is just not bothering. The ones who are not bothering or who have extreme difficulty accessing work probably just need to be in school rather than home learning?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most do have access - it’s just shared within the household and therefore has time limitations. I was just replying to the post questioning why state schools don’t do live lessons.

 Unfortunately as much as we would like to have all the students in school who need the extra support we can’t under the current guidelines - there’s just not enough space!
Let’s hope all can return to school in September.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And as I understand it, from teacher friends, they are very busy also managing the children of key workers, checking in on the welfare of those children at home, and preparing and feeding back on work from children at home. 
 

 I can quite see how they can’t add in live lessons as well. To compare the demands on teachers in our schools with private dance teachers is verging on unfair. I think schools and teachers are managing under extraordinary conditions, and dealing also with sometimes contradictory, and certainly unpredictable government advice, as well as hugely restricted budgets. 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎10‎/‎06‎/‎2020 at 15:45, Kate_N said:

 

Tell me about it! I'm considering teaching outside in September/October. I can't be sure about my safety if I teach indoors - I'm a shade over 60 & asthmatic - I'm at risk in a way my 20 year old students are not.

 

I trust you've seen the WHO advice that people over 60 should wear face masks?  As far as I can see, very little seems to have been made of it in the UK.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Kate_N said:

And as I understand it, from teacher friends, they are very busy also managing the children of key workers, checking in on the welfare of those children at home, and preparing and feeding back on work from children at home. 
 

 I can quite see how they can’t add in live lessons as well. To compare the demands on teachers in our schools with private dance teachers is verging on unfair. I think schools and teachers are managing under extraordinary conditions, and dealing also with sometimes contradictory, and certainly unpredictable government advice, as well as hugely restricted budgets. 


I’ve had no calls and no personal emails, and the school shut to everyone. A lot of work is not even marked, a lot is just computer generated and marked quizzes. One core topic  consists of reading internet articles and then answering computer marked quizzes. No teaching, no marking, no feedback. And this is GCSE level. Whilst I realise this is not representative of every school or indeed every subject teacher, some of us parents are not complaining for no reason... 

I think it was only 2% of the school population who took or were allowed to take keyworker/ vulnerable places, they were very heavily restricted in many areas, again some schools much better with this than others. 

Edited by Peony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, alison said:

trust you've seen the WHO advice that people over 60 should wear face masks?


Thanks for this, Alison. I understood that face masks protect others from the wearer, rather than the wearer herself.  Of course, if we all wore Face masks, then we’d all protect each other.  My family in Germany wear them out in public - the German practice is for everyone to wear something in any public enclosed space (eg shops). 
 

We get so little secure or coherent guidance here - just look at the problems over school provision. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, Peony said:

I disagree that the majority don’t have access to a device. Since lockdown many people have bought them as they’re necessary in a way they weren’t before.

 

I find that statement outstandingly naive.  How does anybody know who has access to what in their own household and I include teachers in that!

 

Who knows what goes on behind anybody's closed doors?  Students (or teachers) who have a turbulent life may not want that exposed to their friends/colleagues/fellow students.  To say that children with turbulent home lives should be included in the list of vulnerable children assumes that even young children must be prepared to admit that their homelife is turbulent.

 

A couple of weeks a go a series of families were interviewed on Breakfast News and they all admitted to difficulties in accessing on line learning facilities for a variety of reasons.  Some people only had internet access through their phones, some only had use of one PC between several people and some stated the currently fashionable trend of open plan living as causing a lack of privacy.

 

It must also be remembered a very long thread on this forum recently about children not wanting to do online dance classes and losing their drive and commitment.

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Kate_N said:


Thanks for this, Alison. I understood that face masks protect others from the wearer, rather than the wearer herself.  Of course, if we all wore Face masks, then we’d all protect each other.  My family in Germany wear them out in public - the German practice is for everyone to wear something in any public enclosed space (eg shops). 
 

 

My husband is a seafarer currently based in Cannes and has to wear a mask whenever he is out in public and have his temperature checked before being allowed into a supermarket. I do shudder when I see people pull their masks down around their chins to chat to companions though as they are potentially doing more harm than good to themselves. I think it's evident when out and about, that in some cases, common sense is in very short supply. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting, the news on the wireless this morning said that around 700,000 pupils did not have adequate access for online learning.  It may not be the majority but it's certainly a very significant figure.

 

I am a school governor and find some of the statements on this thread quite incredible.  Luckily, my experience over the last three months has been very different to that described by Peony.  I don't know whether it is because 'my' school is an academy but there was no way it would be completely shut and, in fact, those teachers who are not shielding or vulnerable themselves have really gone out of their way to ensure that those pupils in school are provided for and with decent provision for home learning for those that aren't.  As mentioned above, the time taken by teachers in contacting all pupils (and parents) and, especially, dealing with those who need additional support or are vulnerable is significant (and appreciated).   

 

However (and as has been mentioned above), safeguarding is the biggest issue that prevents live on-line teaching at both primary and secondary levels.  This is a real issue, particularly with pupils who are already in a vulnerable position and I don't know the answer (other than the base line is that children must be protected and that is the over-riding priority).

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And I believe it's still the case - as is so frequently conveniently overlooked by those who want to push everything online - that only about 80% of UK households actually have internet access.  I don't think that percentage has changed much in recent years, and certainly in the relatively deprived area in which I live there are - in normal times - many children on the computers in the local library during after-school hours - and I don't think most of them are playing computer games!  Since lockdown started, I've seen numerous begging requests for any sort of computer, no matter how old, so that children can get online and catch up with schoolwork - and then there are those who can't even do that because they can't afford the internet access.  This pandemic has really made the gap between the internet "haves" and "have-nots" horribly apparent.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Jan McNulty said:

 

I find that statement outstandingly naive.  How does anybody know who has access to what in their own household and I include teachers in that!

 

Who knows what goes on behind anybody's closed doors?  Students (or teachers) who have a turbulent life may not want that exposed to their friends/colleagues/fellow students.  To say that children with turbulent home lives should be included in the list of vulnerable children assumes that even young children must be prepared to admit that their homelife is turbulent.

 

A couple of weeks a go a series of families were interviewed on Breakfast News and they all admitted to difficulties in accessing on line learning facilities for a variety of reasons.  Some people only had internet access through their phones, some only had use of one PC between several people and some stated the currently fashionable trend of open plan living as causing a lack of privacy.

 

It must also be remembered a very long thread on this forum recently about children not wanting to do online dance classes and losing their drive and commitment.

They all have a mobile phone Janet, it’s seen as essential, you are an outcast without one.. you can also dial in to webinars through a phone line without needing any internet

 

I am a parent, I know lots and lots of parents at different schools. This whole attitude of can’t be done, we’ll just settle for doing nothing is infuriating. Please don’t deny my experience. This is having a terrible effect on our children, much worse than on adults. When offices needed to work from home, what happened? They provided mifi devices and laptops. Most schools do actually have a bank of tablets and laptops. Schools could easily accommodate 30% of pupils in school with social distancing. I’m never one to accept that something that isn’t working can’t improve, education is so vitally important and teachers skills in teaching so missed at the moment

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Also worth remembering that schools get an additional payment of £1000 per pupil per year  (more for primary pupils)whose family is on low income specifically to help them access the curriculum.some schools already use that funding to purchase laptops for them

Edited by Peony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, alison said:

And I believe it's still the case - as is so frequently conveniently overlooked by those who want to push everything online - that only about 80% of UK households actually have internet access.  I don't think that percentage has changed much in recent years, and certainly in the relatively deprived area in which I live there are - in normal times - many children on the computers in the local library during after-school hours - and I don't think most of them are playing computer games!  Since lockdown started, I've seen numerous begging requests for any sort of computer, no matter how old, so that children can get online and catch up with schoolwork - and then there are those who can't even do that because they can't afford the internet access.  This pandemic has really made the gap between the internet "haves" and "have-nots" horribly apparent.

there is also the issue that  a lot of any  increase  may in fact be  via  mobile devices working over the cellular netowrks  ( and  data allowances  that still provide a meaningful cap on activity)   rather than the relative freedom of   landline  or cable  provided  access  (  whether the  link between the  router  and the device  is wifi or fixed ) 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
57 minutes ago, Peony said:

They all have a mobile phone Janet, it’s seen as essential, you are an outcast without one.. you can also dial in to webinars through a phone line without needing any internet

 

I am a parent, I know lots and lots of parents at different schools. This whole attitude of can’t be done, we’ll just settle for doing nothing is infuriating. Please don’t deny my experience. This is having a terrible effect on our children, much worse than on adults. When offices needed to work from home, what happened? They provided mifi devices and laptops. Most schools do actually have a bank of tablets and laptops. Schools could easily accommodate 30% of pupils in school with social distancing. I’m never one to accept that something that isn’t working can’t improve, education is so vitally important and teachers skills in teaching so missed at the moment

 

And please don't deny the experience of other families.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Up until lockdown when my employer bought me a laptop I only had a mobile phone with capped data.  Its great for contributing to online forums and going on facebook but you can;t really do proper work on it.

 

We are an affluent family but we struggle with wifi in our house.  Our kitchen & my bedroom is a dead area and my daughter has been kicked off numerous online classes due to poor connection.  I have been staying up late at night to do my work so that she can use the areas we can connect from for her schoolwork.

 

A 3rd year student we know ended up driving to our house and sitting on our drive in her car with her laptop to connect to our wifi just in order to upload her major project to get her degree.  I know several teachers who don;t have the technology themselves to teach online.

 

The provision at your school sounds particularly poor Peony but you are naive if you think that families can just access technology.  Maybe in your world they all have smart phones but in my world they certainly do not.  Or they have them that are fine just to facetime a friend but try and do anything more like connect to a zoom with more than a certain number of users and it won't cope.  Only last week I suggested to a friend of my son's that she record something but she had to admit that her phone won't do it.

 

And as for schools having a bank of laptops, that's laughable.  My son is entitled because of learning difficulties to use a laptop for schoolwork and exams.  But the school does not have enough to go around.  I assume that your £1,000 per year for low income pupils (it's not just based on income by the way) is Pupil Premium.  This is what my son's school spend their PP money on

 

External mentors for 1:1 and small group support with emotional and behavioral needs

Off Site provision to provide life/vocational skills for those who need them

Dyslexia support & training for staff

CAMHS support and a mental health worker

Teaching Assistants to support PP children

Literacy & numeracy support for the lowest attainers

Provision of a flexible learning centre for those who need time away from the classroom 

Software to help track students needs/collate evidence for EHCP's etc

Education Welfare liason support

Provision of specialist TA intervention co-ordinator post

Staffing needed to provide bespoke curriculum for those who need it

 

In previous years they have  used PP money to help children access the curriculum by being able to attend trips, music lessons and access to higher education sessions

 

Edited to say that it's not just PP money that is used for some of this, some of it comes from the normal budget but is in the schools action plan for PP children.

 

 

Edited by Jewel
  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I absolutely haven’t as I’ve been at pains to point out all the way through all situations and schools are different. There aren’t many views from parents and children on here though. Access is a problem but not an insurmountable one. Access is also a problem if you provide only written information to everyone with poor literacy skills (unfortunately not uncommon and higher in deprived children) and certain SEN. We are hitting the most deprived in society the most, they are already disadvantaged and are becoming more so. We’re a rich nation, surely we can find some solution.

I’ll leave it there but just want to say finally thank you to all our teaching staff and governors and others connected with schools working hard to improve things for our children, you are appreciated and missed greatly. It’s not criticism of you but of a system and society that is happy to see funding slashed and inequality increase

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You've made some excellent points there.

 

I take for granted the good internet and mobile service I have where I live in a very urban part of Liverpool.  When I visit my friend, who only lives 15 miles away, the internet and mobile service is a pile of poo!!  Yesterday I was participating in an organised zoom chat with Lachlan Monaghan of Birmingham Royal Ballet and even my usually excellent service started buffering on occasion.  It was noticeable when we were first locked down that the massive increase in requirement for domestic internet services could not be met although many of the issues have now been largely resolved.

 

I've got a friend who is a primary school teacher with two primary school children herself.  She had no choice but to take her children into school with her when she had to go in to teach essential workers' children and those classed as vulnerable.  Zoom meetings with her have been interesting too as her curious children have wanted to participate.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the same issues with poor internet, if you turn off incoming video it helps considerably, or stagger the usage. I didn’t suggest that parents could all buy equipment and internet. School overheads are considerably less at the moment, ours do lend laptops and tablets. They fund 2 TAs only for all of learning support, I think they’re on furlough at the moment as they can’t really work from home. I’m not suggesting one size fits all. Actually our primary school are providing zoom lessons, makes it more frustrating the poor provision for GCSE. 
 

edited to add- actually looking back practically all parents who’ve commented are getting Live learning of some type so perhaps it’s just our school, which isn’t in a deprived area so probably should be following suit. Hopefully things will improve in September!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Peony said:

I have the same issues with poor internet, if you turn off incoming video it helps considerably, or stagger the usage. I didn’t suggest that parents could all buy equipment and internet. School overheads are considerably less at the moment, ours do lend laptops and tablets. They fund 2 TAs only for all of learning support, I think they’re on furlough at the moment as they can’t really work from home. I’m not suggesting one size fits all. Actually our primary school are providing zoom lessons, makes it more frustrating the poor provision for GCSE. 

 

Whereas at my son's secondary school the members of the SEN department are making monthly, weekly or even daily phone calls to vulnerable children depending on their need. (my son has had three welfare checks so far plus a call about an ADHD assesment)  The calls came through to my mobile phone but they insist on talking to the child.  We did choose the school because of its good SEN provision though.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...