With the announcement of the new national lockdown coming into force, the delivery of all lessons to year 12 and 13 in GCSE, vocational and A Level subjects at S6C will all be taught online from Tuesday 5th January 2021.
The majority of lessons will be live lessons that will require students to participate in the learning experiences. At S6C we are in a favourable position to deliver live lessons in the normal timetabled slots and intend to provide the best learning experience we can. Our staff are well prepared to deliver high quality engaging experiences and our Year 13 students have had experience of this high quality delivery of teaching in the first lockdown back in March 2020. Year 12s have also been prepared to learn online as they experienced it for a week whilst the Year 13 mock exams took place in November 2020 which gave students the opportunity to learn the systems and adjust to online teaching.
The College will not be closed, we are providing a learning hub in the Study Centre for a small group of invited students to follow their lessons online – they will need to bring a laptop and headphones and a packed lunch (we will arrange provision in the case of free school meal entitlement). The hub is open to those who have contact with a social worker, are on an EHCP, young carers, and to the children of key workers who can demonstrate that they would be best placed working in college. It also includes those students who are unable to work effectively at home due to IT needs.
Throughout the lockdown, teachers will be monitoring students’ engagement in online lessons. And Parents will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns at the Parents’ Evenings which will still go ahead. Vice principal, Louise Henderson, says, “The upcoming Year 13 Parents’ Evening will allow us to assure parents that our priority for Year 13s is that we are still preparing these young people for their progression routes; university, apprenticeships and employment. We will continue to teach Year 13 students and we want them to know that we’re incredibly proud of them and want them to feel positive about their commitment that they have shown to their courses.”
When presented with the same situation in March, student engagement was very high. That is not to say though that some students may struggle with the different demands of working from home and not being in college with their friends. There will be regular posts to students with encouragement and resources to promote mental and physical health and wellbeing, online safety, study skills strategies, and tips for managing lockdowns. We will also be continuing with our remote Life Skills programme and will target this to be relevant for the times. Our counselling service will also continue online.
S6C Pastoral Lead, Rebecca Anderson, says, “This is a time when we will need to be safe, careful, diligent, flexible, positive, kind and understanding as we navigate this lockdown. These are qualities we have seen in our S6C students and staff – and we are very proud of our S6C community.”