Petty Pool staff and students have certainly been making the most of the recent lock-down and have been busier than ever over the last few months! Tutors and Learner Mentors have been finding new and inventive ways to connect with students remotely.
All students have had weekly activity plans and online training. We know how important routine and structure is to our students, and we have striven to kept the college day as ‘normal’ as possible during these unprecedented times.
Student Engagement and ‘Virtual Learner Mentors’
There has been an incredible weekly average of 97% engagement each week from students with the activities and remote contact. As well as online activities and videos, we have spearheaded our ‘virtual learner mentor’ scheme, which has seen our excellent learning support staff ringing, Zooming and even visiting students for safe and socially distanced walks in their community.
‘Petty Pool TV’
For the last twelve weeks the staff have created a rolling schedule of interactive and informative videos on our ‘Petty Pool TV’ channel on Facebook. This has been a huge success; with 40,000 comments and 350 films and challenges completed by the students over a wide range of subjects…from Zumba to Science, Music to Makaton!
Finding New Ways to Communicate
As the country has struggled to come to terms with ‘the new normal,’ Petty Pool has been using Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Facebook Groups and Pages, Instagram and lots of other inventive ways to communicate and connect with our students. We are experienced at utilising different communication methods to connect with students with different communication needs; and this has been a fascinating learning curve and opportunity for us to continue to diversify our techniques of reaching all of our students.
On Site Learning for Those Who Need It
For the few students who have Key-worker parents, we have kept a safe and small-scale provision onsite with a handful of staff where needed. This has helped maintain social distancing but also provide face-to-face education for those who need it the most.
This has been a difficult time for everyone. But Petty Pool has continued to work hard to bring the best and most inclusive education to all of our students during the pandemic. We can’t wait to get back to seeing each other again at College again, but we’ve had a lot of fun and learned a lot about reaching our students remotely over the last few months!