Praise for Delamere Academy’s lockdown learning team effort 

Headteacher Julie Clayton has praised parents, pupils and teachers for making Delamere CofE Academy’s online learning programme a success.

The team at the Stoney Lane school have worked hard to make virtual lessons during lockdown closely resemble a day at school.

Children have been taught by their teachers and support staff over Zoom lessons in all the key subjects, plus they have enjoyed online workshops in art, dance, PE and drama as well as book readings, fun challenges, science experiments and appearances by special guests.

Headteacher Julie Clayton said: “Capturing children’s imaginations and getting them to focus is so much harder over Zoom, so we’ve had to work extremely hard to find a way to engage them and keep them motivated.

“The day is split into manageable sections to help children to stay on track, stay motivated and stay positive.

“I have no doubt there will be gaps in learning when they return – online learning is no substitute for the classroom – but we are encouraged by they work that parents are submitting.

“All of our children are taking part and anyone who has fallen behind will receive additional help when they return to school.

“This has been a huge challenge for parents, teachers and children, and there will be a lot more to do when they are back to school, but we are grateful that everyone is pulling together to make it work. We are committed to making sure this generation does not suffer in the years to come.”

During a week of activities to recognise Children’s Mental Health Week, children also took part in games designed to help ‘express yourself’ – which was the theme of the week. Singing, baking, dancing, meditation and movement were all designed to encourage children to feel good and confident.

Mrs Clayton added: “The emotional wellbeing of our children is just as important as their physical health.

“We want every child to be the best possible version of themselves and health and happiness are essential to this.

“We saw the delight in their faces when they returned to school after the first lockdown and we can’t wait to welcome them back once again.”

Delamere Academy is part of North West Academies Trust (NWAT) which manages schools across Cheshire and Shropshire including two other Ofsted ‘outstanding’ schools St Martin’s Academy and Acresfield Academy, both in Chester.

CEO Steve Docking added: “I’m delighted with the way our staff have adapted learning so they can deliver it online, but everyone has to buy into the process to make it work.

“I’m very grateful to our children and their parents, as well as our staff, for coming together to make this solution the success that it has been.”