Rathdown School – Covid Impact Statement
Rathdown School was mandated by the Department of Education and Science to close down on 13th March 2020. We did not reopen to students or faculty until 31st August 2020 when we resumed normal school hours.To date we remain open but the situation is being monitored daily and could change at any time.
From the 13th March online classes through Google Classroom took place following normal timetables and holidays such as Easter were observed.
The following observations can be made about remote/blended learning and the long term effect on UCAS applicants.
- Not all students had access to technology or broadband and were unable to access the classes.
- Practical experiments could not take place.
- Many students have remarked on the difficulty in maintaining focus in a virtual class.
- They found it difficult to have the normal class interaction with the teacher or to ask questions during the class.
- The students felt a sense of isolation and lack of social interaction.
- We ran house exams online with students at home.
- Some subjects were unable to cover the usual volume of material and are therefore potentially behind where they would normally be.
- UCAS meetings took place on Google classroom, which was not very satisfactory, and one to one meetings were on WhatsApp. Having no personal contact with the students from March to September was poor preparation for UCAS applications.