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Primary Learning Arrangements – Plans for 22 February onwards

Posted: February 5, 2021

Schedule for Primary Year Groups – AM sessions, from Monday 22 February 2021

As you will have seen in Mr Smith’s video update, after Chinese New Year we are able to welcome four Primary year groups onto campus daily, for half-days in the morning. 

This will follow the below schedule. These details will also be highlighted within the six-day timetable you’ll receive from your child’s class teacher.

Changes to Online Learning

Over the last few weeks, we have been pulling apart our online learning provision, identifying what is working and what could be improved. I have had conversations with a wide range of stakeholders and we have so far received lots of feedback from the ESF survey sent on Monday 25 January 2021. The survey remains open until Monday 8 February and we would appreciate any further contributions.

The majority of feedback has been positive; however, we are committed to a process of continual reflection and evaluation so we can continue to Grow. Discover. Dream. As a College, we believe in having a ‘Growth Mindset’ which we share and instil in our students. The situation today is different from what it was a year ago or even what it was just before Christmas.

In response to this, the DC Primary online provision is changing in the following key areas:

  • Greater Connection: The number of connection times via Zoom will increase across the board. This does not mean we are on Zoom all day. What it does mean is that lessons with teachers will happen regularly throughout the day in a variety of formats – from small group sessions to whole class sessions. Just like in class, though, the teacher will not be speaking for 45 minutes straight. As in the classroom, time will be given to introduce learning, for students to put new learning into practice, and for next steps, feedback and reflection. This will vary depending on the intent of the session as well as the year group.
  • Timetable: In order to accommodate as many students on campus as possible under the government guidelines, we are moving to a six-day Timetable Cycle. This means every six days the timetable reverts back to Day 1. (See table above)

    A six-day cycle helps enable us to continue to provide learning provision across all curriculum areas, including our four specialist areas of PE, Music, Drama and Art as well as our additional language, Chinese.

    If an online session is missed, it is missed. Accommodation of supplementary learning materials for a missed session will not be provided. This includes absence due to private tutoring or sports training during the school day.

    Key time changes to note for online/in-school days:
    • 8.15-8.25am – Attendance/Morning Check-in
    • 12.10-12.25pm – Mid-day Connect Time/12.25pm Dismissal for in-school days*
    • 12.25-1.15pm – Lunch
    • 3.00-3.15pm – End of Day Check-Out/Reflection

* Dismissal on in-school days for students using the school bus service may occur slightly earlier for logistical reasons

  • Online Afternoons on Half-Days in School: With the need to build in time for students to travel home and eat lunch, on days when a student is in school in the morning, online learning resumes at 2.15pm with block six and the end of day reflection/story time until 3.15pm.
  • Goodbye Grids (mostly): As learning will be shared in real-time with the teacher, the grids as you know them will phase out. If there are materials that need to be shared this will still happen, just not in the full grids that have gone home to date.
  • Feedback Shifts: There are a multitude of ways that feedback occurs whether it is oral, written, peer, teacher or self. This new model will see a decrease in responses to posted work and more meaningful, real-time feedback in live sessions.
  • Better Balance: The intention here is to bring a better balance to the day for everyone – parents, teachers and especially students. Learning will happen across the day, within the hours of the regular school day. The changes here should help return to the balance of relationships – parent to child, teacher to student and school to family. We will not be reverting to a framework that includes homework for the foreseeable future. Once the school day has finished, it is important children have time to shut off, have voice and choice in what they engage in, and do what they love.

More specific details of the new model and information will be shared in the coming days.

As with anything new, I’m sure there will still be some teething issues to start. I thank you in advance for your understanding and patience during the initial roll-out period. May the new year be a healthy and prosperous one for you and your family!

Kung Hei Fat Choi!

Josh Blue
Head of Primary