The purpose of this guidance is to ensure that all involved in supporting the student to achieve their goals, are clear on what targets are being worked on, what support is required, the learning strategies best employed, how progress will be monitored and learning adapted.
In order to continue delivering personalised programmes during this period, the suggestion is to hold a mini review meeting (via telephone or video call) with the student, any key staff/professionals who are available and the student’s key supporters. For some students this will be their parents or close family. Other students may prefer a friend or colleague.
This review should be led by the person who is responsible for the oversight of the student’s remote learning programme.
The purpose of the review is to answer three questions:
- What targets can the student continue to work on and how can these best be adapted to suit a home / different learning environment? (resources, availability of supporters, learning plan etc)
- What support will the student need to achieve these goals and maintain their health and well-being (support, learning strategies, motivation etc)
- How will we monitor progress and change the learning plan / targets when required? (feedback, monitoring systems, communication etc)
To prepare for the review it is suggested that information about current targets and planned end goals is sent to the student (and supporters, if agreed with the student). These should be delivered in a way the student best understands. This could be a recorded message from a teacher they know well, or in pictorial format, or over email.
The teacher should undertake an initial review of the targets and consider how they could be worked on at home or adapted to reflect the new learning arrangements, based on their current knowledge of the student (their living arrangements, family support, access to equipment etc)
The teacher should also consider what different learning approaches and support they are able to make available. This means they can have an informed discussion with the student and their supporters and everyone is clear on what can, and critically what can’t be delivered. This could include how best to deliver work books to learners homes, whether there is a support or learning hotline students can use, what support is available for health and well-being for the student (and their family / supporters), how much availability they and the rest of the team have to deliver online sessions, whether they can use the online sessions for group or individual learning etc?
If possible the teacher should make contact with college IT staff to check what online platforms they currently use, what systems will work with the student’s existing technologies, what other technologies are available online which could be supported by the college’s technology, what software systems the IT team are suggesting, whether specific software the teacher wants to use is able to be supported and what IT help is available to the teacher and directly to students and their supporters?
It may also be useful to send a short questionnaire to some students and their supporters (for whom it is relevant), so you can find out additional information in advance of the meeting. This could include:
- What targets are you currently working on?
- Which of these targets could you work on at home? How would these be different?
What support would you need to work on them?
- When is the best time of day for you to work on them? If you need support at home then are the people available at these times to work on them?
- How much work on your targets do you think you can do in a day and why?
- Please can you confirm your emergency telephone numbers.
It would also be useful to share the date of the meeting (call) with other key professionals such as social workers or the LA. They may want to attend or may just want key actions sent to them. Either way they will appreciate you letting them know what you are doing and how you are supporting the student to continue with their individual learning programme.
During the Review
It may help to have a standing agenda for each call. This may include:
- Welcome and purpose of the meeting – explain the changes that will be made. Many students will find these changes difficult to understand so it is worth spending time discussing at the start.
- Check on people’s health and well-being – the student, their supporters and professionals attending (this may help start a conversation about what health and well being support the student will need moving forwards)
- Check people have reviewed information sent before the meeting. Do the student and their supporters understand the targets they are working on? Discuss which of the targets the student and their supporters want to work on at home / in a different learning environment? Consider how those targets will need to be amended or prioritised in a different learning environment?
Questions which may help this:
- For each target – can it be worked on in a different learning environment? How would it need to be changed?
- What would be the best learning strategies to help the student achieve?
- How would the learning be delivered? For example, through physical workbooks, online resources, recorded training sessions, group chats?
- What support would the student need – college, friends, family, resources, technology?
- When would the learning be delivered? (think also about support availability – college, supporters, external agencies)
- It is important to consider how long you would want the student working on each activity particularly around how long they can engage or focus on specific activities
- Consider therapeutic and health and well being support the student will need and how this can best be delivered. Talk through what is available from a) your college and b) locally to support students at home. For example, this could include online occupational therapy videos designed to show students how to exercise and extend their hand movement.
N.B. Realistically not all support will be able to be provided in its current form but this is a chance to think creatively about whether support can be offered in different formats.
- Consider the technological support the student will require. This could include:
- Checking what existing technological hard/software is available for the student in their different learning environment
- Checking what existing expertise is available in this environment to support the student to use this technology and or trouble shoot. Check what additional support is required.
- Talking through what is available from the college – software, hardware and IT support
- Discussing the student’s individual assistive technology requirements and how they can best be supported remotely/in a different learning environment
- Monitoring progress and feedback. Explaining how you will use the college’s current systems for monitoring progress and adapt them during this period. Explain how you want the student and their supporters to input into this. For example, through self-reflection logs or online quizzes. Explain how feedback will be given on assignments and what will be the timeframe?
- Communication. Checking how the student and their supporters want to be communicated with – how often and in what way? Explain the purpose of this communication. For example, a weekly call to update on progress, to discuss learning strategies which are working / not, to change the learning plan if required, to arrange group calls with other students etc. Explain how the student (or their supporters) gains help with work they are struggling with.
- Safeguarding and health and safety. To share any information from the Gov / college on safest working practices – explaining what staff are/ not allowed to do and why. Identifying what the student / their supporters understands about how to work safely in this different learning environment – for example, what they understand about online safety. Identifying any additional learning needs or support. Sharing the information about reporting any safeguarding concerns/ how they gain help. Checking whether the emergency telephone numbers you hold are up to date.
- Individual learning plan – start updating this based on the conversation. The aim post the call is to update the learning targets, learning strategies and timetable post the call to share with the student and their family.
Establish the plan and share it with the student and their supporters to confirm.
Find out how the student and their supporters want that plan to be available to them – online, pictorial etc
Contact the student (and their supporters) regularly in line with your communications plan.
Check what progress the student is making and what you need to change on the plan (different support, activities, learning strategies etc).
Check the health and well being requirements of the student and their supporters. Liaise with key college staff to identify any trends or thematic issues you need to resolve as a college (and / or highlight to Natspec).
This plan is also likely to change depending on the restrictions applied to people moving outside of their homes.
You can also download this Guidance on Review Meetings as a word document.