Two primary schools have been able to put well laid plans into action to ensure the kids of Laxey and Dhoon don’t miss out on education during lockdown.
The schools, which are in fact run as one school with an executive headteacher, held a webinar for parents to explain the plans for how their kids would be educated throughout lockdown.
As well as holding online lessons and setting remote assignments, teachers have even been able to mark work and return it via email. Most of the pupils at the two schools have taken part in the lessons and work the schools have organised and any kids who didn’t have a suitable device at home were lent one by the Education Department.
Executive headteacher Max Kelly said: ‘It’s early days in this latest lockdown, but so far so good. After the first lockdown my staff have prepared rigorously for the possibility of another lockdown, including training in technology. Just before Christmas, we ran a test event, imagining that we had gone into lockdown and had to move to remote learning. It went really well and helped us evaluate the technology and check that our plans would work. Our preparation appears to be paying off, but we’ll continue to listen to feedback from parents and pupils to make sure that we can maintain a high level of support.’
The schools ran a virtual assembly during the first week of lockdown, which most of the kids and teachers took part in and Laxey was even able to hold its weekly awards assembly with headteacher Craig Astin dropping off the certificates on his evening walk around the village.
Mr Astin said: ‘As a school, we were adamant that we would find a way to hold our celebration assemblies which are always a big highlight each week and I was only too happy to spend an hour or so dropping the certificates off, contactless and socially distanced, of course! I live in Laxey village so most of the houses were on my evening walking route anyway.’
As well as kids at the schools keeping up with their school work, they’ve even been supporting their community, one brilliant example saw six-year-old George Wade digging potatoes so he could give them to people who need them.