Dŵr y Felin Comprehensive School

Dŵr y Felin Comprehensive School

Strengthened by professional collaboration

 

Information about the school

Dŵr y Felin Comprehensive School is an English-medium 11-16 mixed comprehensive school in Neath Port Talbot. It has 1,131 pupils on roll.  Pupils are drawn from an area that includes Neath and the surrounding area.

 

Approach taken

Leaders needed to create the conditions for practitioners to work together and to share ideas openly. All staff took part in a Professional Learning Community (PLC) to focus on the Asynchronous approach to remote learning during the summer term. The aim was to increase staff confidence and understanding to deliver the best remote learning to pupils.

Between April and July 2020 all staff were invited to be involved in a remote Professional Learning Community (PLC). It was also decided that an action research model, drawing upon the experiences learnt through the National Professional Enquiry Project (NPEP), was the best approach. All staff undertook an initial staff survey to identify the level of professional understanding of remote learning. Also, one to one Head of Department interviews were undertaken by a member of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and the Enquiry Lead to identify the main foci for the PLCs. In total nine focus areas were identified (listed below). These findings were presented to the PLC members and all staff were invited to select a sub focus group to join.

Focus 1 – Remote Learning Lesson Map

  • What makes an excellent remote learning lesson?

Collaborate to develop a detailed remote lesson map using the 12-stage template provided.

Focus 2 – Resources Innovation

  • Establish Routines for Learning
  • Activating Prior Learning
  • Hook Activities
  • Instruction Application
  • Models and Scaffolding
  • Introducing New Concepts

Collaborate with your group to co-construct creative innovative resources which supports excellent teaching and learning in a remote learning environment. This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 3 – Tool Kit

  • Video/Audio – Guides
  • Loom/Visualizers

Collaborate with your group to co-construct a guide on how to create an effective audio-visual resource for pupils. This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 4 – Tool Kit

  • Microsoft Stream
  • Flipgrid

Collaborate with your group to co-construct a guide on how to use Microsoft Teams to host videos (recorded and live) This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 5 – Tool Kit

  • Effective PowerPoint Design for Remote Learning
  • Integration of Video/Audio Guides
  • OneNote

Collaborate with your group to co-construct a guide on how to create innovative PowerPoint presentations which suit the needs of learners in a remote learning environment. This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 6 – Resources Innovation

  • Independence
  • Routine
  • Pupil Practice

Collaborate with your group to co-construct a guide and resource, which teachers can use to support pupils in reviewing and developing work within a remote learning environment. This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 7 – Review Understanding

  • Creating Opportunities for AFL in Assignments

Collaborate with your group to co-construct a guide on how to create a Microsoft Form for monitoring pupil progress and providing feedback. This will be part of the remote learning tool kit.

Focus 8 – Pupil Voice

  • Collect and Reflect on Remote Learning Provision from a Pupil Perspective

Collaborate with your group to co-construct and evaluate the Remote Learning Provision from a pupil’s perspective and create pupil guidance resources to access provision.

Focus 9 – Safeguarding in a remote learning environment

  • Infographic Guide

PLC and SLT to collaborate in creating an easy-to-use reference guide/infographic for staff on safeguarding in a remote learning environment.

Each participant undertook wider reading on their focus area, attended progress meetings within their sub-PLC and started to develop resources. At this mid-point, a further staff survey was undertaken to assess the current level of impact on professional understanding and collaboration. Towards the end the findings, information and resources were shared through a series of five virtual professional learning workshops led by the sub-PLC leads. The final stage in this process was a post data capture, Blended Learning INSET in July and the launch of the Dŵr y Felin Blended Learning & Professional Enquiry website.

The impact of the launch of the remote learning PLC was 39 members of staff across all levels of professional experience signed up to the PLC and this number was sustained throughout. This accounted for a minimum of 16 hours of structured professional learning and collaboration. The impact of professional learning was:

  • Post intervention, 96% of staff felt that they were confident to implement a remote learning environment for their pupils, which was a 53% increase from the initial survey.
  • Post intervention, 97% of participating staff felt that the remote learning PLC had a moderate or high impact on their remote learning professional development.
  • Post intervention 95.3% of staff had a competent or complex understanding of Microsoft Teams compared to 23.8% prior to the intervention.
  • Staff understanding of the tools available to deliver effective remote learning greatly increased during the intervention period.
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