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The College is good with 11 outstanding features. Overall, all groups of students including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities make good progress in their learning. Care, guidance and support are outstanding. The College looks after students exceptionally well. As a result, students feel extremely safe and are able to contribute very well to the College and local community. The curriculum is excellent and constantly under review. This ensures that students can choose courses which meet their needs very well; this is increasingly helping students to attain good qualifications. The college is excellent at monitoring student progress carefully to ensure that extra help is provided should they fall behind their challenging targets.
What was the Challenge?
Horndean Technology College (HTC), a specialist Technology College, is a larger than average community secondary college. The College has been awarded the Investors in People Award and the International School Awards amongst other accolades. Homework policies existed whereby there was a rough weekly homework timetable and all homework was written by students in homework planners/diaries. In the past the College had invested much time and financial resources incorporating technology in the school so that students could view and complete assignments online, but this proved to be very cumbersome. HTC were looking for a working solution with a short roll out phase so that they could start using it for the next academic year.
HTC approached Show My Homework in June 2011, for a cost effective solution to get all homework assignments online with an option for students to submit relevant homework pieces online to their respective teachers for assessment. The College was adamant that a working system be in place for the new academic year and thus a proposed roll out plan was agreed for the entire school to begin using Show My Homework by September 2011, with a training session for all staff pencilled in for that time. However, due to the simplicity and ease of use, along with the availability of user guides and demo videos and direct support, all staff had signed up by the end of the summer term with a majority of staff posting homework for their classes. The training session was then replaced as a refresher.
Their Story So Far...
All teaching staff in the College have signed up and all teaching staff have accounts. With the College meant to be officially going Live from September, we have still seen 326 homework posts during the last few weeks of the academic term, (a period when all Year 11 have been on exams and a majority of Year 10 students are on work experience). HTC has linked its online homework calendar with its main school website, and parents have been notified of the new homework procedure starting for September, through letters home and at a recent parents evening. The concept has been received well by parents and students. Staff have also been given the opportunity to put forward suggestions for future features for development, making this useful piece of technology really work for them as a school.
The school provides an extremely supportive and caring ethos in which all students receive the help and guidance they need to do well.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ofsted came suddenly, worked swiftly and reported promptly that Chauncy is a good school with outstanding features. They were very complimentary about leadership and management and the pastoral care we provide. They described behaviour as very good and the students contribution to the community as outstanding. The best aspect, in my view, was that they praised the way our students look after each other, whether as mentors or just as young people in their everyday lives. Thirteen 'Outstanding' and twenty six 'Good'Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â grades to build on for next time - possibly in 2013.
What was the Challenge?
The Chancy School is a suburban school set in the county of Hertfordshire. In their last Ofsted inspection they received a 'Good' grade and were looking to build on that and push the school to 'Outstanding'. One of the areas they were looking to improve was Homework. Their Assistant Head, Katharine Lovell, was tasked with finding a solution to help organise the homework process so that the SLT could monitor the amount of homework set on a weekly basis and make sure that all subjects were giving the appropriate amount of good quality homework. They already had a homework policy and a homework timetable, the trouble was that it was near enough impossible to track the actual homework that was given on a weekly basis by staff. They needed a solution that would track and monitor homework and also show evidence to Ofsted that homework was given regularly across the school. Show My Homework helps parents support their child and the school as it can be accessed by anyone.
Mrs Lovell, approached Show My Homework in March 2011 and took a trial with other SLT members. They found the site easy to use and felt that having their schools own online homework calendar would also encourage their students. The key for them however was the fact that all SLT staff and Heads of Department could track and have visual representation of the amount of homework the school was giving on a weekly, monthly and termly basis. Further to this, they could drill down and track homework set by year group, department and even by teacher, all with the click of a button.
Their Story So Far...
In April 2011, the Chauncy School decided that Show My Homework was the tool they needed to improve their homework policy. With one training session, all staff were introduced to the system and were all logged in posting homework for their students. Since then the school has posted 1117 homework questions. The SLT can monitor on a weekly basis how much homework was posted by department and can take relevant actions when homework levels drop off. Their students can see exactly what their homework is and when it is due in and the school is also able to engage with parents and unite to help students raise attainment.