Returning to school and Covid-19: guidance and resources
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For all the latest DfE documents, see coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for schools and other educational settings
Guidance includes the following:
- catch up premium
- data collection pausing and re-starting
- face coverings in education
- guidance for full opening
- planning for tier 2 local restrictions.
Whether we’re calling it blended, hybrid or remote learning, the likelihood is that some pupils will still need to access learning from home at some point.
Experiences so far mean that we have a better understanding of what makes for effective remote learning. Check out the following articles for ideas.
- 10 tips for providing constructive feedback remotely
- Effective remote learning: six keys to success
- Homeschooling for children and young people with SEND needs
- Risk assessment and consent for live streaming
Rather than diving headlong into closing academic gaps, pupils will probably need time and support to re-adjust and process the experience of the last months. Remember that everyone will have experienced the lockdown differently – don’t make assumptions about how people will feel.
- consolidating and reviewing learning: task setting and assessment
- planning SEND provision for 2020/21: five evidence-based recommendations
- preparing for pupils with SEND to return to school.
Setting a positive, supportive tone will be vital. Use our eight tips for senior leaders to prepare a consistent approach around key issues such as attendance, curriculum adjustments and staff engagement.
Your self-evaluation framework (SEF) might look different this year. Use the SEF template, updated to reflect the disruption to schooling, to identify development priorities.
Supporting mental health and wellbeing of pupils and staff will be a priority for schools. Advisers on our Wellbeing Award for Schools have distilled their experiences with schools over recent months into an eight step downloadable framework for supporting emotional wellbeing during and after lockdown.
The video recording of David Beeney's workshop on managing the mental health of all provides useful guidance, for example a suggested process for line managers to follow when having a mental health conversation.
For pupils with SEMH needs the transition back into school could be particularly challenging. See our guidance on SEMH and the return to school.
Sadly, some members of your school community are likely to have experienced bereavement due to Covid-19. For a better understanding of how children and young people are likely to experience grief, see Zoe Dale’s article supporting bereaved pupils: advice for staff and the recorded workshop how to support pupils with bereavement.
You can find further resources at:
- Child Bereavement UK
- Winston's Wish: advice and guidance on supporting bereaved children and young people during the coronavirus outbreak.
Use the DfE planning frameworks and SAGE guidance to update your existing risk register and health and safety assessment with new considerations as they arise. For key questions and a process to follow, see our guidance on assessing risk: making your school safer.
Do you have pupils with EHCPs? Download example risk assessments and get FAQs answered on ensuring the safe return of pupils with EHCPs.
BAMEed have published guidance for Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) staff and their employers in school settings, which includes an example staff risk assessment tool. Download the document from the BAMEed resources section. You can also refer to the government's review of disparities in risks and outcomes.
The HSE’s risk management section includes useful guidance, resources and templates.
The team at Browne Jacobson LLP have shared some short videos:
- health and safety musts
- PPE in the classroom
- communicate well and listen to your staff.