PAFF_112718_touchmemory-609x419_edited_e
GOVERNMENT USES CARROT AND STICK APPROACH TO REMOTE LEARNING

The carrot. On 1 October the DfE announced that extra cash would be made available to support online teaching and other remote education provision. The DfE says that the package will fund 100,000 additional laptops and tablets for pupils and students most in need, should they be required to learn at home. The package also includes 80 grants of £1,000 each to be made available to colleges in England to pay for the services of specialist mentors and coaches to help college staff who are teaching students who are self-isolating.  More information on this package of support can be found at:
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-remote-education-support-for-schools-colleges-and-teachers

The DfE also announced extra funding for the expansion of the EdTech Demonstrator programme. EdTech Demonstrator schools and colleges are a network of providers that have shown that they can use technology effectively and have the capacity to help other schools and colleges to do the same. The extra funding will help them to support other schools and colleges that are most in need of support, including those that have recently adopted an online learning platform and/or that have high numbers of disadvantaged learners. The support that EdTech schools and colleges will provide includes advice, training, online tutorials, webinars, and recorded content designed to enhance at-home learning. More information on the EdTech Demonstrator programme can be found at:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/edtech-demonstrator-schools-and-colleges-successful-applicants/about-the-programme

The stick. On 1 October, the Government published a ‘Remote Education Temporary Continuity Direction on the provision of remote education in schools and colleges, under the Coronavirus Act 2020’. The Direction imposes a legal duty on schools and colleges to provide the same education entitlement to children and young people who are require to study at home, as they would if they were attending classes in person. Teaching unions have reacted angrily to the move, saying that ‘…government action should be focused on support, not sanction’. More information on this can be found at:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/remote-education-temporary-continuity-direction-explanatory-note