Distance Learning

Keep Wales Safe. Keep Wales Learning.

Thank you for your engagement over the past few weeks.

As you are aware, on Monday (20/04/20) Welsh Government published its policy to support schools during the ongoing Covid-19 disruptions.  The Stay Safe. Stay Learning: Continuity of learning policy statement intends to ensure the well-being of staff and learners across the country while supporting learners to access distance learning.  Each and every one of us recognise that staff across our schools have been doing a fantastic job in engaging learners and protecting their well-being since the formal suspension of the curriculum on the 20th March 2020.  We also recognise that schools are at different points in developing their distance learning strategy.

As part of this programme regional school improvement consortia, in conjunction with Estyn and ADEW have developed advice for settings, schools and pupil referral units (PRUs) to support them in their work with learners. This document is not statutory.

This advice can be read in conjunction with advice on continuing with school and PRU business during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It also relates to advice for parents/carers through the Stay Safe. Stay Learning’ programme and Distance learning tools through Hwb

In addition to the guidance, there are resources available to help prepare learning activities and these are being shared with you via your Supporting Improvement Advisers.

As part of developing and implementing Stay Safe Stay Learning, GwE, in partnership with local authorities, will work with schools to identify opportunities for supporting leaders and teaching staff. As announced by the Minister for Education last week, the first elements of support will:

  • address the digital exclusion by working with local authorities and schools on making access to Hwb and its learning opportunities more widespread, and addressing equipment and connectivity issues
  • provide guidance and support to school staff in developing practice in the new way of learning
  • provide guidance and support to schools on using Hwb to continue doing school business

It may take some time before we return to schools operating in what we consider a more traditional way, but it has been heartening to see the wide range of partners across the country coming together to provide guidance documents for schools that may need some additional support to get the most out of their digital learning strategy.

We would like to thank each and every one of you for the way in which you have risen to the challenges presented at this time. This is a new way of working for everyone and we will continue to support you as we continue on this journey.