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Priory Woods School & Arts College

Priory Woods School & Arts College A Special Place to Learn

Remote and Home Learning Policy

1. Aims

This remote learning policy for staff aims to:

  • Ensure consistency in the approach to remote learning for pupils who aren’t in school be it for self isolation, school closure or long term illness that does not impact the students ability to engage with learning
  • Set out expectations for all members of the school community with regards to remote and home learning for those students that are able to cognitively access it
  • Students that are unable to cognitively access remote or home learning will receive alternative resources and advice and guidance will be shared with parents/carers as to how they can use the resources to support learning.
  • Provide appropriate guidelines for data protection

2. Roles and Responsibilities

Priory Woods is a special school for students aged 4 -19. The students have a range of special education needs and disabilities and as such a ‘one size fits all’ is not an appropriate approach. Teaching staff know their students well and are able to identify what their needs are and how best to meet their individual needs.

  • Class teachers will communicate with families to request email addresses
  • The IT technician will work collaboratively with class teachers of those students that can cognitively and physically access remote learning via technology routes and teachers will communicate directly with the families of those that cannot. Teachers will provide physical work packs were appropriate, or ideas on the school website for families to explore at home with their child.
  • Phase Leaders will liaise with teaching staff to identify which students require access to remote learning using technology.

2.1 Teachers

When providing remote learning, teachers will specify their availability to facilitate remote learning and communicate this with families and students.

If they’re unable to work for any reason during this time, for example due to sickness or caring for a dependent, they should report this using the normal absence procedure.

When providing remote or home learning activities teachers will ensure that those students that can access remote learning or home activities materials are provided with them and that they are regularly communicated with to ensure that students have sufficient work/challenge.

Teachers are responsible for:

  • Setting work and/or providing access to resources – for students in their bubble (where appropriate) :
    • Ensuring that the amount of work they need to provide is sufficient to meet the needs of the students in their care
    • Some work will be delivered live either through Teams or accessed through the website using the Home Learning tab.
    • As work is set in bubbles and is pitched to the individual needs of the student, teachers will co-ordinate, if necessary with their colleagues to ensure that pupils with limited access to devices can still complete the work.
  • Providing feedback on work:
    • Where possible completed work will be shown on screen
    • Completed home work packs from pupils could be left at reception for the teacher, or they can be returned to school once remote learning period has ended. The teacher will be in regular communication with the student/family at home and can supply further home working packs/activities if this is required.
    • Feedback to students will be given during the regular contact or through remote learning sessions on Teams where appropriate.
  • Keeping in touch with pupils who aren’t in school and their parents:
    • Teaching staff will make regular contact by calling families and speaking to students (where this is possible) in addition to emailing or by using IT such as Teams. This contact is recorded on the system.
    • Teachers are not expected to reply to emails etc outside of their normal work hours.
    • Should a teacher/staff member receive any complaints or concerns shared by parents and pupils they must inform a member of SLT immediately
    • Safeguarding concerns must follow the usual procedures and be recorded on CPOMs and  DSL or Deputy DSLs as required.
    • Teachers will work collaboratively with families to help support them to work/tasks with their child and to complete any work set
  • Attending virtual meetings with staff, parents and pupils:
    • Staff will adhere to an appropriate dress code when delivering any remote learning
    • Teachers will carefully consider the location of where they conduct their remote learning session (e.g. avoid areas with background noise, nothing inappropriate in the background)
    • If teachers are working in school then the remote learning tasks may be set for students to complete individually and the teacher can check in with the student at the end of the school teaching day.
    • Teachers may be able to link to the student at home and involve them in the live lesson that is taking place in school and will do so if this is possible and appropriate.

2.2 Teaching assistants

When assisting with remote learning, teaching assistants must be available between their normal contracted working hours.

If they’re unable to work for any reason during this time, for example due to sickness or caring for a dependent, they should report this using the normal absence procedure

When assisting with remote learning, teaching assistants are responsible for:

  • Supporting pupils who aren’t in school with learning remotely and with home work packs:
    • The teacher will assign students and tasks to conduct to create home learning packs
    • Teachers will assign students and families for teaching assistants to contact regularly and report back to the teacher
  • Teaching assistants know that should they be required to attend virtual meetings with teachers, parents and pupils:
    • To wear appropriate attire
    • To carefully consider the locations from where they will host the meeting (e.g. avoid areas with background noise, nothing inappropriate in the background)

If teaching assistants are also working in school, where possible roles and responsibilities will be shared within a team bubble.

2.3 Phase Leaders

Phase Leaders will liaise regularly with their phase team and will:

  • Consider whether any aspects of the curriculum need to change to accommodate remote learning
  • Working with teachers teaching their bubble remotely or by home work packs, to make sure all work set is appropriate and consistent
  • Will update SLT on progress with remote learning tasks set and share any issues and challenges
  • Monitoring the remote work and home working set by teachers in their bubbles through discussion and planning meetings
  • Alerting teachers to resources they can use to teach their bubble remotely

2.4 Senior leaders

Alongside any teaching responsibilities, senior leaders are responsible for:

  • Co-ordinating the remote learning and home work packs approach across the school
  • Monitoring the effectiveness of remote learning and home work packs by holding regular meetings with teachers and reviewing work set or reaching out for feedback from pupils/families
  • Monitoring the security of remote learning systems, including data protection and safeguarding considerations

2.5 Designated safeguarding lead

The Role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL):

  • To ensure that through training that the DSL has a good understanding of their role and responsibilities, processes, and responsibilities of other agencies
  • Be aware of which students have a social worker
  • Help to promote educational outcomes by sharing information about the welfare, safeguarding and child protection issues with teachers and school and college leadership staff
  • Understand the Prevent Duty
  • Are aware of the risks associated with online safety and relevant knowledge and up to date capability to keep students safe online at school
  • Recognise additional risks of children/young adults with SEND
  • Share information
  • be the contact person for all staff who have concerns over any aspect of a pupil’s welfare
  • follow South Tees Area Multi Agency Hub Child Protection Procedures
  • attend relevant and regular Child Protection training 
  • ensure that all staff have a knowledge of South Tees Area Multi Agency Hub Child Protection Procedures
  • keep Child Protection records up to date and in an orderly manner and ensure in-year transfers take place
  • broaden consultation and decide what action to take with a member of staff who raises concerns
  • assist staff with writing reports for Child Protection meetings
  • liaise with other agencies and attend case conferences
  • notify the allocated Social Worker if there is an unexplained absence of more than two days of a pupil who is on the child protection register.
  • notify the allocated Social Worker and the LAC Designated Teacher if a child who is looked after, has any unauthorised absence.
  • inform LA Child Protection Officer of any action which has been taken in relation to Child Protection concerns
  • discuss any concerns / pass on relevant records to the appropriate DSL when a pupil is transferring to another school / establishment
  • maintain contact with other relevant schools, where there is more than one child in the family, and a child in our school is causing concern
  • support staff with and through any concerns they may have with Child Protection
  • support pupils with child protection issues through direct multi agency working, 1;1 assigned time and teacher led PSHE/ RSE/Thrive where appropriate
  • ensure that information sharing is appropriate and meets the welfare of the child as the most important consideration
  • the complaints procedure is followed rigorously should any complaints/reporting be received about any unacceptable behaviour towards children
  • to promote and maintain close working relationships with parents
  • to be responsible for the online safety education.

2.6 IT staff

IT technician is responsible for:

  • Fixing issues with systems used to set and collect work
  • Helping staff and parents with any technical issues they’re experiencing
  • Reviewing the security of remote learning systems and flagging any data protection breaches to the data protection officer
  • Assisting pupils and parents with accessing the Internet or devices

2.7 Pupils and parents

Staff can expect pupils learning remotely or accessing home working packs to:

  • Be contactable during the school day and time will be limited when using a device
  • Complete work to any deadlines set by teachers where appropriate
  • Seek help if they need it, from teachers or teaching assistants
  • Alert teachers if they’re not able to complete work where appropriate

Staff can expect parents with children learning remotely to:

  • Make the school aware if their child is sick or otherwise can’t complete work
  • Seek help from the school if they need it
  • Be respectful when making any complaints or concerns known to staff

2.8 Governing board

The governing board is responsible for:

  • Monitoring the school’s approach to providing remote and home working pack learning to ensure education remains as high quality as possible
  • Ensuring that staff are certain that remote learning systems are appropriately secure, for both data protection and safeguarding reasons

3. Who to Contact

If staff have any questions or concerns about remote learning or home work packs, contact the following individuals:

  • Issues in setting work – talk to the relevant phase lead, SENCO or SLT
  • Issues with behaviour – talk to the relevant head of phase
  • Issues with IT – talk to IT technician, Glen Grout
  • Issues with your own workload or wellbeing – talk to your phase lead or SLT
  • Concerns about data protection – talk to the data protection officer, Derek Evans and Glen Grout
  • Concerns about safeguarding – talk to the DSL, Janis French or a member of the Safeguarding Team

4. Data Protection

4.1 Accessing personal data

When accessing personal data for remote learning purposes, all staff members will:


  • How they can access the data, such as on a secure cloud service or a server on school’s IT network
  • Identify which devices they will use to access the data and staff will only use permitted school devices to do so

4.2 Processing personal data

Staff members may need to collect and/or share personal data such as email addresses, telephone numbers etc as part of the remote learning system. As long as this processing is necessary for the school’s official functions, individuals won’t need to give permission for this to happen.

However, staff are reminded to collect and/or share as little personal data as possible online.

4.3 Keeping devices secure

All staff members will take appropriate steps to ensure their devices remain secure. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Keeping the device password-protected – strong passwords are at least 8 characters, with a combination of upper and lower-case letters, numbers and special characters (e.g. asterisk or currency symbol)
  • Ensuring the hard drive is encrypted – this means if the device is lost or stolen, no one can access the files stored on the hard drive by attaching it to a new device
  • Making sure the device locks if left inactive for a period of time
  • Not sharing the device among family or friends
  • Antivirus and anti-spyware software is installed on school devices
  • Glen Grout ensures that operating systems are up to date and that the latest updates are always installed on school devices

5. Safeguarding

The safeguarding policy is available for staff on EVERY.

6. Monitoring Arrangements

This policy will be reviewed bi annually  by DHT, Hazel Souter. At every review, it will be approved by the Head Teacher, Janis French and the full governing body.

7. Links with other Policies

This policy is linked to our:

  • Behaviour policy
  • Safeguarding policy
  • Data protection policy and privacy notices
  • Home-school agreement
  • ICT and Internet acceptable use policy
  • Online safety policy