When the primary lockdown was introduced, colleges had been pressured to think about new methods to work remotely with out impeding studying.
For Newman RC School in Oldham nevertheless, college students and workers had been already ready to proceed their schooling from house having beforehand been pressured to work remotely on account of flooding on the faculty.
With a water leak drenching components of the higher and decrease flooring of the Catholic secondary greater than 30 lecture rooms and workplace areas had been out of use from February 29 till March 16.
When lockdown measures had been launched shortly afterwards, the college was properly ready to rapidly regulate to house studying. Workers offered college students with studying supplies, coaching on the right way to attend their digital classes and carried out new measures to maintain college students protected after they returned.
How did the college assist its college students throughout lockdown?
When the primary lockdown measures had been launched on March 23, Newman RC School acted rapidly to make sure that college students had been properly geared up for the unsure instances forward.
All college students in years 7, eight and 9 had been supplied with train and studying books, stationary in addition to a literacy and numeracy packs to work by means of.
Years 10 and 11 had been supplied with the identical together with additional revision books and work relying on their topic selections.
Assistant headteacher, Sophie McNee was happy with how the college was ready to reply to the disaster.
She mentioned: “We had been very lucky to be ready to be so ready for house studying due to the flooding challenge earlier within the 12 months.
“Shortly earlier than lockdown each scholar got here into faculty to do some coaching on on-line studying and the right way to use Microsoft Groups.
“The curriculum group arrange a timetable with two hour-long classes within the morning after which from 1pm till 3pm college students would produce other duties.
“Key stage three for instance got an additional doc of actions comparable to urged studying for every topic they had been learning or artwork tasks.
“The primary two classes of the day could be posted reside on Groups and the trainer could be accessible to reply questions as properly.”
In the course of the top of the pandemic the college had a 73% on-line attendance price that was solely introduced down by college students who didn’t have a pc or web entry.
The college supplied what assist they may to college students, offering them with laptops in addition to giving vouchers to these in receipt of Free Faculty meals, properly upfront of the federal government resolution.
Sophie defined: “Even earlier than the federal government talked about their stance on free faculty meal vouchers we had been offering them for our most susceptible college students.
“We despatched out 330 £25 vouchers on three separate events to assist our college students in addition to doing common welfare checks on pupils.”
What about now college students are again?
When lockdown measures had been lifted, Newman RC School carried out a number of adjustments in September to make sure that pupils had been stored protected.
The college’s 1500 college students had been positioned into ‘hubbles’ the place they had been separated by 12 months group to forestall the unfold of an infection. Annually group additionally has their very own entrance and exit to the college.
Throughout lesson time the college has carried out a strict seating plan. Subsequently if a scholar exams optimistic the college is aware of which college students have been in shut proximity with them.
Whereas a small variety of instances have been confirmed on the faculty, the influence of isolation hasn’t stopped the faculty delivering reside classes, recorded classes and extra.
Each college students and lecturers are required to put on masks when shifting across the faculty however they are not worn in lecture rooms according to Division for Training tips.
Mother and father are additionally being stored within the loop concerning any adjustments that the college is making.
Sophie defined: “It is not simply our college students who’ve had the college’s assist throughout these difficult instances, as mother and father are being always stored updated on any adjustments or information from the college.
“We additionally held a digital open night for fogeys trying to ship their youngsters right here in September. That included a pre-recorded tour and the pinnacle did a reside Q&A for 12 months 7 mother and father.”
The college has helped assist the local people
Sophie is extremely happy with the work Newman RC School has been doing to assist assist those that want it essentially the most.
She mentioned: “All through every part that has been occurring we now have been very lively inside the neighborhood.
“Our faculty has at all times remained open as a neighborhood hub. It was accessible for our SEND college students and for the youngsters of our key staff.
“Our workers have gone above and past with Mr Quigg creating over 300 PPE masks. We’ve got additionally been donating cleaning soap and goggles to Oldham hospital. Our #DressUpForTheNHS occasion raised cash if college students and workers wore their faculty uniform at house.
“We additionally had a number of Easter eggs for college kids however as we had been unable to offer them out throughout lockdown they had been donated to our native foodbank.”
As a Catholic faculty, Newman RC School has continued to have a good time its Catholic heritage all through the pandemic. The college not too long ago celebrated the anniversary of its patron John Henry Newman changing into a Saint with college students studying about his life, phrases and actions.
All the scholars of their lecture rooms took half in a digital liturgy with mother and father additionally being invited to affix in.
Newman RC School has additionally not too long ago joined up with MACFEST (Muslim Arts and Tradition Competition), an thought created by Qaisra Shahraz MBE, which helps to boost consciousness of Islamophobia. The college might be celebrating its Muslim heritage college students by means of arts and tradition.
The pinnacle, Mr G Potts is adamant that with “the toughest working group in schooling,” he can proceed to supply provision to his younger individuals and doesn’t imagine that colleges want to shut.
As a substitute, he believes that colleges ought to work to minimise disruption to studying and be given flexibility to make sure that the virus doesn’t negatively influence on workers or college students.
He mentioned: “We would like our mother and father and college students happy with the steps we now have taken to maintain them protected and to maintain them studying.”
To seek out out extra about Newman RC School and the way it’s safeguarding its college students go to the college’s web site right here.