Chair of Governors Blog 2:
Date: 20th Apr 2020 @ 4:20pm
Chair of Governors Blog 2:
Coronavirus and the effect on Education Locally and Nationally
Welcome to Blog number 2.
This blog looks at why schools have closed and how they are dealing with the following:
- Setting work for pupils during the Coronavirus closure
- Content of work
- Amount of work done by children each day
- Does the children’s work get marked?
Why have schools closed?
The first reason is to contain the spread of coronavirus.
The second is that as the virus proliferates, increasing numbers of teachers will have to self-isolate because they, or a family member, have symptoms of the illness or have been in contact with someone else who has.
This would leave schools understaffed and unable to provide a safe environment for pupils.
How are schools setting work during Coronavirus closure?
There are a number of different ways in which the schools are setting work for their children. ‘It is obviously different in each school and does depend on the schools’ capacity to plan, prepare and distribute work, their ability to set work using a range of media, taking into account the technology capabilities of the school, and schools’ expectations of how much support parents and carers will be able to give.’
The content of the work set does vary from school to school but try not to panic! What is obvious from the Headteacher replies that I have received is that there is a strong focus on filling gaps and reinforcing the basics like times tables, number and place value, spelling, and grammar.
How much work is your child supposed to do each day?
How long is a piece of string?
The Department for Education (DfE) says that children who are being electively home educated must receive a ‘suitable full-time education’ – but that does not apply when they’re at home because of isolation measures, rather than being home educated through choice.
In any case, the DfE says that home learning does not have to mirror the patterns of the school day. You are not required to:
- have a timetable
- have set hours during which education will take place
- observe school hours, days, or terms
Realistically, the amount of work your child is expected to do will depend on what their school sets and will vary from school to school and authority to authority.
From the responses given to this question, the average time that schools are expecting their pupils to spend on school work is approximately 2 hours per day, and more importantly as one Headteacher said, “I have stressed the importance of families spending time together”
Will your child’s work get marked?
The feedback from most schools is of a strong focus on providing learning resources rather than on marking, but again, this does vary from school to school.
SATS coronavirus update
Please note that the DfE has confirmed that SATs will not take place this May.
I hope that you have found this blog useful and I would also like to thank my colleagues in Cumbria, Cheshire and Lancashire for their input.
Chair of governors