How Each Measure Addressed a Specific Problem
Each communication addressed a different problem facing the trust. The health information page provided parents and staff with a clear presentation of the lengthy Public Health England advice. This relieved pressure on teachers to provide answers and ensured that no mixed-messaging was received by parents.
To respond to the fact that the situation was different in each school, a live school status page was published on every school website. An open spreadsheet detailing the operating status of each school was shared with all principals. The marketing team updated the status pages live as principals inputted any changes in the spreadsheet. This allowed parents to confidently rely on the school website and significantly reduced confusion at school gates. Between 1st March until the end of the school year the status pages were viewed a total of 34,6918 times by over 14,807 unique visitors.
Implemented early, the live chat function gave parents a means to get answers for specific questions from the trust. From their initial implementation until the end of the school year, parents and carers were able to find answers for 5,959 enquiries using the live chat. The live chat also helped the trust identify issues that required a larger response from the trust. Keeping a record of every interaction, the marketing team compiled and published extensive FAQ pages for parents, carers, and staff.
Giving advice and information on topics ranging from free school meals to finances to support for key worker families, the FAQs pages established the school websites as a genuinely useful resource. From 23rd March until the end of the school year, the FAQ pages were viewed over 15,000 times, an average of approximately 500 times per school website.
To address the management of provision for key worker families, forms were sent to parents every week to determine how many pupils would attend each day. Knowing the numbers, the trusts schools were better able to allocate resources and staff where it was needed.
Once the lockdown had begun, the next problem was how to continue educational provision while schools were closed.
While secondary schools in the trust had experience with virtual learning environments and distance learning, the primary schools in the trust were, at first, only equipped to send out physical packs of learning materials to families.
To facilitate direct communication between parents, all primary schools in the trust were connected with a virtual learning environment within a week of the schools closing.
Eduprise then collaborated with the central school improvement team then collaborated to produce a weekly updated home learning resources page for every primary school.
Every week, specialist teachers from the School Improvement Team created an easily navigable timetable of lessons and activities led by introductory videos.
By standardising the home learning resources provision, eduprise enabled the trust to dramatically reduce the workload on teachers to provide home learning materials. This allowed them to focus on pastoral support work, and spend considerably more time interacting with each child.
The home learning pages were used extensively by the thousands of families at the trust. At Forest & Sandridge Primary School, for example, over 6,000 unique users accessed the home learning resources page, showing that the sites were even being visited by users outside of the school.