Loreto Secondary School, Letterkenny, Co Donegal
Tel:  (074) 9121850     Fax:  (074) 9126479      e-mail: info@loretoletterkenny.ie     www.loretoletterkenny.ie

 Distance Learning Guidelines 2021

Mission Statement
Loreto Letterkenny is a Catholic school committed to the development of the whole person. The school endeavours to develop student responsibility for learning in a safe, caring and spiritual environment, where each individual experiences personal success and fulfilment.

 Distance Learning during the Covid-19 pandemic
Distance learning presents incredible challenges and opportunities for teachers, parents and students. This year’s changing circumstances call for great flexibility and resilience as learning moves from home to school and back to our homes again.

Everyone’s circumstances are different. More focused and independent learning from home is easier for some students and families than others. Even very digitally-savvy young people may struggle with educational technology. While some aspects of education may not transfer easily to online environments, students often learn new skills and develop important personal and academic competencies in distance learning environments. 

We all need to be mindful that each home is experiencing their own challenges when it comes to on-line engagement. This applies to both students and teachers. Some homes are sharing devices, some homes do not have very strong wifi connections, many homes are made up of parents and students all trying to work at the same time. Some of our students are helping to look after siblings, some of our teachers are trying to teach their classes while also being responsible for the on-line engagement of their own children. Everyone in the Loreto Letterkenny school community is trying their hardest to adapt and meet the challenges of this second period of on-line schooling. 

We have learnt so much about on-line engagement over the last year, our skills in technology have evolved at such a rapid pace and this allows us to engage in a much more effective manner. The Department of Education and Skills has issued guidelines as to the different ways we can adapt our on-line methodologies in order to offer students a blended learning experience.

What is Blended Learning?
Blended Learning combines in-person and online instruction to give your child the best of both worlds. Students will have their lessons and classwork posted online so that they can learn at home.  Our teachers are working hard to make this lock down as close to a ‘normal school’ as possible. Things will look a little different, but rest assured your child’s education is in good hands. This blended learning through Google Classroom will involve a mix of live classes, pre-recorded classes, posted work with instructions and emails. The number of live classes is not set. A blend of methodologies must be used in order to ensure that all our students are offered equality of opportunity depending on their individual home circumstance

What should I be doing as a parent/guardian?

Steps to Blended Learning for Parents/Guardians

  • Check your child’s google classroom account to see what assignments they have due, to check that they are engaging with all their teachers and assigned work.
  • Look for any communication from your child’s teachers.
  • Help your daughter to remember to keep their device charged.
  • Remember to email gsuitesupport@loretoletterkenny.ie if your child is experiencing any difficulties with their google classroom account. Most problems have a simple solution.
  • Encourage your child to stick to their normal class times in as far as possible and to participate in scheduled assigned class work.

What should my child be doing?

Steps to Blended Learning for Students

  • Keep your device charged and updated.
  • Log on to your school account daily and check for any work assigned during your class time and follow the teacher’s agenda. Participate in all scheduled meetings and/or view class required content.
  • Pay attention to all timelines and deadlines.
  • Check for and complete all assignments on or before the posted due date.
  • Interact and communicate appropriately with others. Always follow the rules in the school Acceptable Use Policy
  • Reach out to your teachers, year heads, the SEN department, guidance teachers or deputy principals for any help or assistance you may require.    This also relates to any issues that are causing you anxiety.  It is always better to seek help and to communicate rather than avoiding things.