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Remote Teaching Policy

This policy has been created in response to the 2020 COVID-19 situation and related national school changes including closures, but also reflects a long-term business model where Eastside provides the option of virtual training and teaching, alongside face-to-face options. This policy has been approved by the Board of Trustees with reference to the Eastside’s Equality Policy and Safeguarding Policy.

This policy has been created in response to the 2020 COVID-19 situation and related national school changes including closures, but also reflects a long-term business model where Eastside provides the option of virtual training and teaching, alongside face-to-face options. This policy has been approved by the Board of Trustees with reference to the Eastside’s Equality Policy and Safeguarding Policy.

The aims of the Equality Policy are to ensure that Eastside meets the needs of all, taking account of gender, gender identity, ethnicity, culture, religion, language, sexual orientation, age, ability, disability and social circumstances. It is important that we meet the diverse needs of students to ensure inclusion for all and that all students are prepared for full participation in a multi-ethnic society. The aims of the Safeguarding Policy are to keep children and adults safe.

This policy is based on the following principles:

Eastside wishes to:

  • Provide engaging, meaningful learning experiences for all our participants.
  • Recognise the challenges that many of our young people and their families and teachers face with regards to home learning, during school lock-down periods.
  • Recognise the challenges that Eastside staff face in terms of working from home or remotely
  • Safeguard staff, artists/practitioners as well as our students/participants.
  • Meet the diverse needs of students to ensure inclusion for all and that all students are prepared for full participation in a multi-ethnic society. Ensuring access for all students as much as we possibly can.

We will continue to provide engaging, meaningful learning experiences for all our students and partner schools. What does this mean?

  • Students will engage with work that has clearly defined objectives.
  • At appropriate points, students will receive feedback on specific aspects of their work to which they should be expected to respond.
  • To be engaging, the work will draw on a variety of resources, including video, Zoom (or other platform) classes live, resource packs and any other sources of information where appropriate.
  • Work will be accessible to all students and appropriate challenge and enrichment will be embedded.
  • The main platforms through which work will be delivered to students and schools will be: Zoom, Flipgrid, Microsoft teams, Google Classroom and Youtube or any other platform deemed suitable by Eastside management teams – Youtube in particular will be used for pre-recorded films.
  • High quality work should be formally acknowledged and if at all possible, celebrated by communicating this to school staff and requesting permission to post work on Eastside’s web site (using only the child’s first name or initials).
  • Where students consistently do not engage with the work set, we will continue setting it but also refer the matter to the respective school pastoral team.
  • Feedback is not required on all work / tasks set as this would not be the case in normal teaching circumstances. However, staff should try and be explicitly clear with our students as well as their parents and carers in terms of what work will be marked and/or fed back on.

We will recognise the challenges that many of our students and their families face with remote learning.

  • Eastside will ensure, as far as possible, that work / tasks set are provided in a format that the vast majority of students will be able to work on either in the classroom supervised by teachers or at home and via our secure delivery platforms mentioned earlier.
  • We will avoid setting work or tasks that require students to print out documents; as many families have no access to a printer and we must all remain acutely aware of the pressure any associated cost could bring at a time when many are now struggling financially due to the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic.
  • Where work is consistently not being accessed and any email reminders or prompts are also not being responded to, we should make the respective school pastoral team aware.

We will recognise the challenges that Eastside staff and school teachers face in working from home.

Staff members have differing home circumstances meaning it is difficult to have exact expectations about how they will work, however, there are some basics we must all aim to adhere to:

  • Staff will provide timely feedback to our students or teachers on specific pieces of work. This should be via the various established platforms we are currently using and can be in the form of brief positive comments, whole class feedback or specific targets as appropriate.
  • Staff will follow up lack of engagement from students in terms of work/tasks set in the ways clearly set out in this policy.

Video Lesson Protocols Key principles:

  • Safeguarding both our staff and artists/practitioners well as our students/participants.
  • Ensuring access for all students as much as we possibly can.
  • Safeguarding both Eastside staff, students and teachers receiving virtual training.

For the purposes of this section, ‘students’ refers to both child students and school staff receiving training.

  • Live lessons will take place through the secure platform, ZOOM (or other if specified by Eastside management). When using this platform, logging in will provide the security offered by our internal servers and associated systems.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will always initiate the session and will not join sessions led by a student.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will choose a blank/blurred/Eastside branded background for the video to ensure privacy. Where one to one mentoring is being delivered student cameras should be off unless otherwise directed by Eastside staff. In the event it has been agreed by Eastside management that it is appropriate for students’ cameras to be on, students should also blur/blank their backgrounds as appropriate. In educational settings (ie classrooms) students cameras may be left on.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will always be the last person to leave the session. This ensures all communication between students in the session is supervised by our staff only.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will control comments in the session and where/if necessary, mute any student who comments/contributes in an unacceptable manner.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will not invite any parents/carers to any live lessons.
  • Eastside artists / practitioners should be prepared to record the session in circumstances where they are delivering 1-2-1 to students where there are no other supervising adults (ie teachers) – for example as part of a mentoring programme. Eastside artists / practitioners must read out the following statement at the

beginning of your session if this is the case: “I will be recording this session for safeguarding purposes. The recording will be securely stored on Eastside’s password protected hard drive as a record of the meeting and will be deleted within 12 months.”

  • Specific Video lessons can be recorded provided that the appropriate permission has been secured from all participants so that if they are being taught fundamentally important information, participants can access this at a different time through the recording. A good example is where a teacher CPD session is recorded with permission, so that it can be shared with other teachers in the school or as part of a teacher evaluation meeting so that the conversation recording can be passed on to the programme evaluator.
  • All contact/use of such applications should be via Eastside’s account only, NOT any form of private or non- Eastside verified platform or app.

Ensuring access for all students

Video lessons may not be accessible to all students for a variety of reasons including a lack of appropriate technology. Therefore:

  • Specific Video lessons can be recorded provided that the appropriate permission has been secured so that if they are being taught fundamentally important information, students can access this at a different time through the recording. A good example is where a teacher CPD session is recorded with permission, so that it can be shared with other teachers in the school or as part of a teacher evaluation meeting so that the conversation recording can be passed on to the programme evaluator.
  • Alternative avenues of communication should, if at all possible, be provided, such as sending written instructions (via the school email) to be printed and posted alongside other children’s other school work.

Appendix 1

ONLINE WORKSHOP DELIVERY SAFEGUARDING CHECKLIST

FOR ARTISTS

Eastside wishes to:

  • Meet the diverse needs of students to ensure inclusion for all and that all students are prepared for full participation in a multi-ethnic society
  • Safeguard staff, artists/practitioners as well as our students/participants.
  • Ensuring access for all students as much as we possibly can.
  • Provide engaging, meaningful learning experiences for all our participants.
  • Recognise the challenges that many of our young people and their families and teachers face with regards to home learning, during school lock-down periods.
  • Recognise the challenges that Eastside staff face in terms of working from home or remotely

CHECKLIST

Before your workshop:

  • All workshop sessions should ideally be delivered via Eastside’s account only. Eastside management are authorised to make exceptions for this by prior arrangement with artists who will be using their own platforms.
  • Only whole class or group sessions are allowed. Eastside artists / workshop leaders should never conduct 1:1 video, audio or chat sessions with a student unless specifically authorised by senior management for example as part of a mentoring scheme or similar scheme of work, however this is allowed when providing online training for adult members of school staff.
  • Avoid setting work / tasks that require students to print out documents (some families may not have access to a printer)
  • Be prepared to record your session in circumstances where you are delivering 1-2-1 to students where there are no other supervising adults (ie teachers) – for example as part of a mentoring programme. You must read out the following statement at the beginning of your session if this is the case: “I will be recording this session for safeguarding purposes. The recording will be securely stored on Eastside’s password protected hard drive as a record of the meeting and will be deleted within 12 months.
  • Specific video lessons can be recorded provided that the appropriate permission has been secured from all participants so that if they are being taught fundamentally important information, participants can access this at a different time through the recording. A good example is where a teacher CPD session is recorded with permission, so that it can be shared with other teachers in the school or as part of a teacher evaluation meeting so that the conversation recording can be passed on to the programme evaluator.
  • The teacher(s) and where possible all participating students should be in a neutral area (preferably not their bedrooms, however if that is impossible the screen should be set up to face a neutral background e.g. bedroom wall). All involved should be appropriately dressed.
  • If a student is joining from home (e.g. shielding student) they should be advised to have a neutral or selected background, not their natural home setting or switch their video off. Be guided by what the teacher recommends regarding such students
  • The (online) video conference room is a classroom and the same standards and expectations in terms of behaviour, attitude and respect apply to this alternative environment.
  • Do not allow any unauthorised access to the video conference room. This includes parents/carers or any other family members.
  • Be careful when using screen sharing – it can be easy to accidentally share confidential information. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you shut down any email and confidential programmes before the lesson.

During your workshop:

  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will choose a blank/blurred/Eastside background for the video to ensure privacy. Where one to one mentoring is being delivered student cameras can be off unless specified. In the event it has been agreed by Eastside management that it is appropriate for students’ cameras to be on,

students should also blur/blank their backgrounds where possible or direct the camera to a neutral background. In educational settings (ie classrooms) students cameras may be left on.

  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will always be the last person to leave the session in order to ensure all communication between students is supervised by Eastside representatives. There may be cases where Eastside management can authorise students from particular working groups to continue planning and communicating unsupervised (e.g. BFI FIlm Academy)
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will control comments in the session and where/if necessary, mute any student who comments/contributes in an unacceptable manner.
  • Eastside artists / workshop leaders will not invite any of our parents/carers to any live lessons.
  • Parents/carers can help their child set up devices, but should not join any group/class chats you lead. When the live online session is finished, you should wait for all students to exit the meeting before leaving. This ensures that students do not continue chatting after the lesson has finished without you being present.
  • The chat facility within Zoom and Microsoft Teams should be solely for the asking and answering of questions during a lesson.

After your workshop:

  • Where work is consistently not being accessed and any email reminders or prompts are also not being responded to, we should make the respective school pastoral team aware.
  • Please report any safeguarding concerns in the standard way – see extract below from Safeguarding policy

EXTRACT FROM SAFEGUARDING POLICY

Responding to general suspicions:

Statements about or allegations of abuse or neglect made by children and adults must always be taken seriously. If an Eastside employee or volunteer becomes aware of suspected abuse or if a concern arises from their own observations, they should not attempt to investigate the situation any further or interview the child or young person regarding the situation. This action could complicate a sensitive situation and interfere with legal proceedings.

There is however a responsibility to protect children and any suspicions or allegations brought to the attention of an employee or volunteer should be reported to Eastside’s designated person responsible for Safeguarding and Child Protection, at the earliest opportunity. Employees and volunteers should not attempt to investigate any matter themselves; this is the responsibility of social services and/or the police.

Procedure when responding to a concern:

If a child confides in an Eastside employee or volunteer, below are guidelines on how to deal with a disclosure:

  • listen carefully to what the child is saying
  • react calmly so as not to frighten the child and take what they say seriously
  • avoid leading the child or judging what they say
  • do not promise to keep a secret; make the child aware that if they tell you something in confidence, you may need to tell someone else who can help
  • keep questions to an absolute minimum to ensure a clear accurate understanding of what has been said
  • make a full record of what has been said, heard and/or seen on an Eastside Safeguarding form (on display in the office and to be held by persons off site); as soon as possible. This should include the date, time, facts, observations and discussions that are relevant. You must ensure that the correct name and address of the child or young person is recorded. This record should be factual and not include opinions or personal interpretations of the facts presented. Records should then be signed and dated by you and given to the Designated Safeguarding lead in person who will also sign and date the form
  • the designated person will discuss the incident with the employee/volunteer and ask them to return the next day to follow up with them as part of due diligence to ensure actions have
  • been taken (as appropriate)
  • the Designated Safeguarding Lead should immediately inform the educational provider when there is a concern about a child. When off site, the designated person will consult the relevant Safeguarding Officer within the venue where the events were taking place (i.e. school, theatre, community centre etc), or contact Social Services and/or the police
  • the designated person records all action on the form. In the event of no action, clear reasons are given
  • the designated person must report back to the employee/volunteer to confirm they have acted on the information given. However, actions remain confidential and are not disclosed, unless there is a specific reason to do so.
  • once feedback has been given, the Designated Person for Safeguarding dates when feedback was provided on the back of the form and files it in the locked Safeguarding file in the office.
  • if further actions are taken by external providers (educational providers, social services or police), the Designated Safeguarding Lead must follow up to ensure these actions are undertaken and record each contact on the original safeguarding form.
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