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Expected to teach live online lessons?

(85 Posts)
FlowerAndBloom Sun 15-Mar-20 19:56:04

Hi all,

We have received an email yesterday asking all staff to prepare to teach live online lessons during potential school closure on a new platform nobody has used before. My concern is that I cannot teach live all day while my own kids are at home and need supervising in their schoolwork. Has anyone else been asked this? How do I approach this? Private school in London if it makes any difference!

OP’s posts: |
Palavah Sun 15-Mar-20 19:57:22

If you were going in to teach who would be looking after your children?

nachthexe Sun 15-Mar-20 19:59:02

Why are your kids at home? How old are they?

BecauseReasons Sun 15-Mar-20 20:01:00

Teach your kids alongside the class? They can pretend they're schoolmates!

Bobbiepin Sun 15-Mar-20 20:02:09

@palavah probably their own school!

teaandajammydodger Sun 15-Mar-20 20:03:44

I assume the OPs own children would normally be in school while she teaches!

Are you in a union? NASUWT put out information on Friday.

OhioOhioOhio Sun 15-Mar-20 20:05:30


Yes, I'm worried about this too. How do I offer online input when I'm at home busy with my own kids?

ArabellaRockerfella Sun 15-Mar-20 20:05:46

I think if you want to get paid then you have to try and make this work.
I am in a similar situation in an independent school. If all parents ask for a refund this could have a catastrophic effect on the school finances. We may all end up without jobs, so we should try our best to be accommodating. Can you team up with friends to offer reciprocal child care?

FlowerAndBloom Sun 15-Mar-20 20:19:51

Sorry I wasn't clear, I meant if all schools are closed. So I would be trying to teach and support my own kids with their work as well. I can't leave my kids on their own, can hardly put them in a cupboard while we teach can we?

OP’s posts: |
SoloMummy Sun 15-Mar-20 20:22:11

Plenty of parents will have similar issues. I will have to be on conference calls - and usually back to back in my working day and still manage with my child. But I'd prefer that to no money!

Generally online teaching is shorter bursts of time.

flatoutpanic Sun 15-Mar-20 20:25:45

Is it not the same for anyone trying to work from home?

Or worse still, for a nurse whose children are off school?

I think it’s just a case of us all having to muddle through. We won’t all have the ability to support our own children’s learning if they are off school, while keeping a job going.

Michaelbaubles Sun 15-Mar-20 20:26:15

I don’t think the idea of live online lessons will prove workable in the long term for exactly this reason. Plus attendance will be impossible to chase up. I suspect a model of putting the day’s work up in one go and then taking in work/answering queries throughout the day would be more manageable and allow teachers to work around having kids at home. It’s going to be a bloody nightmare though. Especially for those with KS1 or younger children who won’t be able to get on with an independent task for long.

absopugginglutely Sun 15-Mar-20 21:14:35

My internet dips out each time our boiler makes a noise! So this is going to be infuriating!

oncemorewithfeeling99 Sun 15-Mar-20 21:25:56

Sounds tricky. Do you have a union rep or a long standing teacher who could raise these issues and try to compromise.

For example 10-15 minutes live at start of each lesson, answer questions by message/email and then marking of work done later.

That way you could mark work in the evenings whilst your own children are in bed and spend 45mins per hour working with your own children.

Schools are going to have to be flexible. People are going to get very used to online lessons (and business meetings for that matter!) pausing while Mrs Smith nips off to help her child in the loo. Everyone will be in the same boat.

Evilcat Sun 15-Mar-20 21:34:05

This has also been suggested by my school. I am clueless technically so apologies if the answers to my questions are obvious (Sorry to jump on your thread @FlowerAndBloom )

Can anyone explain what sort of broadband speed would be needed to teach a class over Skype? I am rural with poor broadband speeds.

Also would teaching over Skype affect my fair usage on my broadband?

FlowerAndBloom Sun 15-Mar-20 21:39:09

Not sure but if it’s you streaming and potentially your own children as well doing their lessons you would be over the limit maybe? From a safeguarding perspective...young children cannot simply be left. This seems ludicrous. Schools will be open with skeleton staff for children of nhs for those worried about that.

OP’s posts: |
likeafishneedsabike Sun 15-Mar-20 21:42:58

I think if you’re expecting to be paid while the school is closed then the education of your own children is going to have to take a back seat to making a living. In the case of those teachers with babies and toddlers usually in nursery, very difficult. In the case of teachers with children 5 and above, the kids at home have to be well prepared for the fact that parents will be working and will check in with them when they can. If you think that it’s not going to work (you don’t say the age of your kids or whether they have SEN?) it might be better to take unpaid carer’s leave and focus all your energy on home educating your own.

Theduchessstill Sun 15-Mar-20 21:58:32

* it might be better to take unpaid carer’s leave and focus all your energy on home educating your own.*

How utterly ridiculous - what if someone is the only source of income in the household? They should have to be a martyr for the sake of trying to pretend everything is completely normal when it's not?

I agree that we need to be working at home but live lessons all day is not going to work logistically - people may have insufficient broadband for a start. In my school we'd probably be streaming to no one, though I appreciate that may well not be the case if it's a private school.

My h/t has emailed today to say she's wanting to balance the needs and rights of parents/students with those of staff, and is aware live lessons is not going to work for those with caring responsibilities. She's just gone up massively in my opinion.

And those stating we need to do this to get paid are wrong. Staff covered by the Burgandy Book will be paid if absent due to infectious illness, and anyway, there are other ways of working without doing this.

CheekyMango Sun 15-Mar-20 22:01:21

Completely against Union recommendations OP especially on safeguarding teachers

BecauseReasons Sun 15-Mar-20 22:07:12

I'd want it guaranteed that you won't be expected to teach over the holidays too if I were you, OP. Apparently some teachers in China have been caught out by that.

missy111 Mon 16-Mar-20 06:19:07

Flower, what platform are they suggesting? I asked if this was possible in our (state) school and got told no as none of the software we had access to would record sessions- which could lead to safeguarding issues...

WelshMoth Mon 16-Mar-20 06:24:08

I'm in a city centre school and there's lots of unsubstantiated talk about staying open with skeleton staff for key health workers to have somewhere to send their children.

I have no idea what'll happen.

I've been prepped by my SLT to upload work onto a platform called Padlet. No 'live' teaching mentioned. We also have visualisers that can record footage - so I could go through an exam task with audio and visuals, systematically write notes and answers and everything is recorded.

This week, without knowing what the hell is going to happen and with key staff already off in my department, I plan on downloading all last year's exam papers in readiness to 'teach' them from home. I thought I could spend 2 hrs a day on them, upload, then prepare for the next day.

That said, I teach in a high child poverty and deprivation area and even though most kids have better mobile phones than me, they have no other means of internet access - no desktops or laptops at home.

I'm also really concerned about their clueless attitude towards this virus, but that's a whole other thread altogether.

WelshMoth Mon 16-Mar-20 06:25:25

FWIW, I think what we are doing could work. Live streaming, I wouldn't agree to. At all.

ElizabethinherGermanGarden Mon 16-Mar-20 06:27:35

There's a lot that can go wrong with live streaming. Much better to make sure that students are set up with booklets that revise previously covered content and have key times when you'll be answering questions etc. Those who teach online regularly say that it takes a while to learn how to do it well.

NeurotrashWarrior Mon 16-Mar-20 06:39:24

There's a concern that the unions have re live streaming and pupils capturing images and then messing with them etc.

So this has been ruled out.

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