Schools are on a steep learning curve as they devise new ways of teaching away from the classroom.
Parents have also realised just how difficult the job of a teacher is as they take on home schooling full-time.
The Pegasus Trust, which includes the primary and infant schools: Cypress, Ecclesbourne, Beulah and Whitehorse Manor, like many other schools has created an online learning resource www.pegasusacademytrust.org/online-learning to help children and parents navigate these unprecedented times.
However, it’s not just children’s education which needs to be maintained but also their physical development which is why the school is continuing to provide hot free school meals.
“We are serving hot meals for our most vulnerable pupils from Whitehorse Manor School but as a takeaway service,” said Jolyon Roberts, Trust Executive Head and CEO.
The school is opening from 1-6pm but only for the children of ‘key workers’ and have limited numbers.
He added: “I think we’ll be well used to dealing with remote learning as we go on.Â Â We are still on a steep learning curve here and will have to break down some of the traditional ‘professional distance’ if we’re to keep in touch with our children properly by, for instance, giving them our e-mail addresses or chatting through apps which would have been out of the question in the past.
“I think it’s important that families establish some kind of routine but we are well aware that they are not teachers and the current thinking is that setting around a third of what would normally be done in school is about right.”
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Mr Spoerer has long been an inspirational teacher at Ecclesbourne Primary School.
Last summer he took a group of children from the school to perform at the Albert Hall and most days after the school day has finished he is to be found running ‘Jam Bus’ music clubs.
However, on the last day of school before the shutdown he excelled himself. With unfailing patience and good humour he sent the children and parents who came to him away with a smile and something to keep them going over the uncertain weeks ahead.
Every child who came to him left with a musical instrument and a link to classes online where they could practice and improve. The enthusiasm of the children was palpable and they were queuing up to get the guitars, ukuleles, djembes and keyboards that Mr Spoerer was handing out.
Whilst this was going on, he still had a music club to run, and the children in this club waited patiently and with good humour for him to be finished so he could work with them. All of this is a culmination of the hard work and passion that Mr Spoerer has poured into his teaching of music at Ecclesbourne Primary School.
It also really shows the value of music education at school and the children of Ecclesbourne School are very lucky to have any music teacher, let alone one as inspiring as Mr Spoerer.