Remote learning quickly become a way of life for pupils across Stonyhurst when the pandemic hit. Teachers, parents and pupils quickly adapted to learning away from the traditional classroom. At Stonyhurst, the focus has been on safely ensuring a continuity of education for all pupils across academic, vocational and co-curricular studies.
Thanks to the introduction of Stonyhurst Anywhere, we have been able to provide remote online lessons, virtual assemblies, live-streamed masses and virtual weekly challenges. The Stonyhurst teaching and support staff have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to ensure that the remote learning on offer is the best possible. Pupils of Key Workers were also supported in school, accessing Stonyhurst Anywhere lessons online and taking full advantage of the beautiful outdoor environment during ‘recs’ (break times).
What is Stonyhurst Anywhere?
Stonyhurst Anywhere was created to provide a Stonyhurst education to pupils across the world and in the UK during the pandemic. We understood the importance of quickly creating and providing a continuity of education during this important stage of a child's personal development.
The ‘Stonyhurst Anywhere’ virtual learning environment recreated the cohesion provided by the daily shared experience. The reassurance of a shared academic and pastoral routine, including daily contact with teachers, deeply committed to their needs is essential to a child’s learning and personal growth. All being fundamental to the core purpose of education in our Jesuit tradition – the improvement in living and learning. We believe that the children and the wider school family benefit from the guidance, stability, structure, commonality of purpose and anchorage to a school community from which all derive strong support.
Pupils were taught online by subject specialists via 'Stonyhurst Anywhere' and moved around the curriculum in streamed sets for English, Maths and Languages. In parallel they were members of mixed ability linear classes of approximately 18 in size in their other subjects. This allowed the pupils in the Playroom to mix online with the majority of their peers over the working week, allowing boys and girls, day pupils and boarders, UK and non-UK pupils to study alongside one another.
You have found the perfect balance between focused teaching and free time for students to follow their own interests and spend time with family. The support from school is wonderful. Ben is enjoying his lessons and is motivated to do all his studies with very little input from us, his parents. We are impressed, grateful and delighted! Thank you.
Pastoral care or ‘Cura Personalis’ (care for the entire person) remained a strength of St Mary's Hall, for every pupil, even when working remotely. Weekly tutorials for KS3 pupils alongside PSHE lessons, masses and assemblies all help to make the pupils feel included and involved and, most importantly, allow us to monitor their wellbeing.
All pupils completed a self-evaluation form on the Wellbeing Platform each week, which provided a snapshot of how they were feeling. These evaluations were monitored by tutors and teachers and acted upon swiftly. The weekly Pastoral meetings between key staff for every age range continued and enabled us to support pupils and their families fully.
Prayer and Worship
Chaplaincy provided comprehensive support and resources for pupils, families and staff during this time, mindful of the particular challenges posed by the pandemic and the increased need to feel connected and spiritually nourished.
Safeguarding at St Mary's Hall remained at the forefront of everything we do, more so throughout the pandemic. It is the first item on any meeting agenda and our policies and procedures remained as robust as ever. We carefully considered the wide-ranging implications of remote teaching and have adapted our protocol accordingly and shared it among the school community: pupils, parents, and staff to keep everybody safe online. To further support pupils, we provided a range of contact details for internal and external agencies, including the school counsellor, who can be contacted if required, as well as resources and materials to support and promote wellbeing.