1. Choose an expert to lead the process – and give them the time to do it properly
Remote learning and ‘onboarding’ is a new skill for any teacher, so it’s important to identify and train the right person or people to be able to do this in any organisation. Some schools and trusts are clear that this will be a long-term task and are recruiting externally.
2. Test the technology first
It’s easy to have inflated aspirations for new technology. But will it actually stand up to a group of real teachers and students at your school? Test this out first with a short pilot programme that involves a range of students.
3. Audit the equipment teachers will be using
One of the major challenges with any rollout is coping with the different equipment that users have – and in this case it may be that teachers are swapping between different equipment at school and home on a daily basis, and some equipment may be missing simple things like cameras or microphones.
4. Audit the experience teachers have
At this stage in remote learning, it’s easy to think that teachers are hardened veterans of remote learning, but many will have performed different roles during previous lockdowns or be new to the school or even the teaching profession. You may be able to help them by ‘buddying’ them up with more experienced colleagues.
5. Make training bite sized
Remote training is difficult to complete in one session, so try to arrange short sessions – perhaps allowing teachers to read material or watch training videos in advance so you maximize time together.
6. Work out what training students need and make this easy to share
As well as training teachers, it’s important that students can access new technology. Enable teachers to help with this by sharing the student user experience and providing support material than allows teachers to quickly solve student problems.
7. Share best practice and new ideas as you go
A good way of reinforcing new technology is to regularly share how people are using it through regular meetings – either all staff or department or phase groups. Problems can be solved, and examples of best practice stored and shared.
8. Ensure that school policies match the technology changes you are making
This might seem a minor point, but when things are changing at speed, it’s important to ensure that policies that weren’t designed for totally remote learning are updated – or even written for the first time! This helps ensure consistency – important as external inspections of remote learning are already starting!