Back-up 10,000-lesson remote learning curriculum plan published for schools

Written by: Pete Henshaw | Published:

The government-funded Oak National Academy has published its curriculum plans for the next academic year so that schools can begin planning how they might make use of the free resources.

The online school was set-up in the midst of the coronavirus lockdown and offers video lessons and resources covering a range of curriculum subjects for pupils from Reception to year 11.

For the next academic year, the resource is part of the government’s back-up plans should there be a second spike in Covid-19 infections or in the case of local lockdowns.

While all schools are due to return in full from September, the government’s latest guidance requires them to have contingency plans in place to be able to continue remote learning should it be necessary.

Oak National Academy has received a further £4.34 million in Department for Education (DfE) funding as well as support from the Mohn Westlake Foundation to continue its work.

This will include nearly 10,000 lessons and resources, with the majority becoming available ahead of September.

A statement from Oak National Academy said: “To create an inclusive and flexible curriculum which meets the needs of as many schools as possible, Oak’s 40 subject leaders collaborated with a wide-range of teachers, subject associations and sector bodies to agree what lessons to produce.”

The curriculum published this week is designed to be flexible and outlines the detail of each subject and key stage available, with more subjects to be added early in the new academic year. It gives schools the choice of how to order the subjects and topics and the ability to download and edit resources to support lesson planning where copyright allows.

A team of around 300 teachers will now create and record the lessons in the coming weeks, ready for teachers to use in September.

Since launching, the online classroom has delivered more than 16.5 million lessons, reaching an estimated four million pupils.

Matt Hood, principal at Oak National Academy, said: “We’re all looking forward to schools safely re-opening in September, but with the potential for local lockdowns or staff absences it’s necessary to have a back-up plan. Oak is available to any school that might need us. We’ve tried to create a broad, flexible curriculum that teaches the most popular topics and gives schools choice over how to order them.

“Oak is a completely optional resource. It is up to teachers and school leaders to decide what is best for their school, we just hope it can ease workloads and support teachers through a challenging year.”

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