The events of the last 18 months have shown us several different ways to approach tasks. Some of these are ways that we may not have explored before to their full potential. It has also shown us some areas that work well with little need for improvement and others where improvements are needed.
When the entire country went into lockdown and pupils, and students of all ages found themselves thrown into the world of home learning, some thrived whilst others fell behind. While many families in the UK choose to home educate, roughly 23,000 children were removed from formal education in the two years before the pandemic. Remote education offers a more significant challenge to teachers and pupils. It is certainly nothing like the home education of those pupils who are no longer registered with a school.
Companies such as ebb3 are passionate about how the support that is offered for both remote learning and education can be enhanced because now more than ever, it is something that the whole world has come to realise is a valuable tool and one that we may be called on in the future to use again.
One point that became clear early in the pandemic was that accessibility was a massive obstacle for remote education. In some cases, this was access to the internet due to lack of Wi-Fi or bad Wi-Fi connections in the home. However, for many students, particularly those from lower-income homes, this was down to a lack of equipment to access the internet.
It doesn’t matter how fantastic educational establishments’ resources are; if students have no means of accessing them, they will fall behind. Offering equipment as a loan and help towards the internet costs can open up this valuable source of learning to all students irrespective of their financial backgrounds.
For those children who are identified as SEN, it is crucial to understand that whilst they may have the accessibility and equipment, they may need a little more than their peers in terms of support to use this; otherwise, as a group, they can also all too easily fall behind.
Unless you have worked in education, you will never truly realize just how much work educational professionals put into their roles. Teaching is so much more than the hours they put in in the classroom every day; the student-facing part of the job. It’s about the setting of work, the paperwork, the marking, and even worrying about students in their classroom who are struggling, falling behind, or having home issues.
When they are teaching remotely, this lack of face-to-face makes it even harder, yet they will still strive to offer the same level of education.
Staff need support to learn the best ways to use new technology, so they and their students benefit. They need to be supported to share tips with other teachers, and they need to be supported as they would if they weren’t remote teaching because the job hasn’t suddenly gotten easier.
Training in best practices for remote learning needs to be offered for all staff to help them use these new resources that are available to their full potential.
It is also essential to ensure that they have the appropriate equipment and internet access to do this; if they don’t, then there is a genuine possibility that nobody will be learning.