Blended learning, upskilling staff and adapting our school infrastructure

Case Studies

Blended learning, upskilling staff and adapting our school infrastructure

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The Gateway Learning Community supported by Brough Community Primary School

EdTech Demo
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The Gateway Learning Community [GLC] was launched in April 2012 and has grown into a partnership between the Gateway Academy, Herringham Primary Academy, Lansdowne Primary Academy, Tilbury Pioneer Academy and the Gateway Primary Free School. All of these schools are located within the Tilbury and Chadwell areas, which means that we are ideally situated to work collaboratively to create a seamless learning experience for all young people from Reception to Year 11. We joined the EdTech Demonstrator programme in February 2021.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, we established the use of Google Classroom across our group of schools to provide an exceptional remote learning offer. From here we agreed that we wanted to further the use of devices in school but were unsure of what effective blended learning would look like in our classroom, how to effectively upskill our staff, and adapt our school infrastructure to cater for using Google alongside our Windows interface.

Blended learning

The training opportunities were a huge benefit for our staff and really helped them to understand what blended learning may look like in the classroom but also provided an understanding of the technicalities of the Google Workspace apps and how they work harmoniously across a range of devices. It also gave us confidence to use the Google eco system as our main way of storing documentation. We felt we were not having to take such a huge risk as we had support with another large trust that used the same system. The help we received was a great fit for our school as we were provided with advice on ways to overcome barriers with our infrastructure, insight into how another school was using certain applications in teaching and offered effective training for our staff.

We have successfully migrated our groups’ centralised planning to utilise the Google Workspace applications which has allowed for better collaboration within and across schools. We have also begun a transition into blended learning across Key stages which has allowed for a wider and deeper experience of the curriculum. The benefits we gained were massive in terms of saving time in preparing suitable training for our staff. We were able to then focus on sorting the infrastructure for a seamless rollout of 1:1 devices across our schools.

Even though our partner school was a lot smaller and from a different context, they were able to put us into contact with other larger organisations to give support and advice on other areas of using the Google Workspace applications. We feel we have developed a good partnership with Brough Primary School to develop on further projects.