ESS Educators Take on the Challenge of Online Learning
In preparation for the shift to online learning, the faculty and staff of Elizabeth Seton School-South underwent training to familiarize themselves with the various platforms to be used in the Home-Based Virtual Learning Program (HVLP).
The institution prepared its educators for the shift to home-based learning by equipping them with knowledge about Eliza (the school’s LMS), Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), Moodle, etc. Learning these platforms aided in the development of efficient and collaborative modules created by the faculty that enabled them to interact with their peers and students virtually.
Most were required to successfully complete the first level in the Google Certification for Teachers program to meet the requirements of being a LearnLead Educator. With this assessment, the institution can ascertain that its educators are more than capable of teaching online by being able to utilize the tools provided in the school’s online platforms. Selected faculty members were also required to gain the Moodle Educator Certification to help assist in the development and management of the technical aspects of the online program.
Initially, the teachers were provided with forums and basic training to familiarize themselves with the platforms to be used. This enabled them to have a general understanding of the concept of such and why these were selected. A more intensive and detailed training occurred afterwards, which was spearheaded by faculty members, a majority of them being ICT teachers, who have attained the certificate programs prior to the training. They were assigned to guide their peers to learn the basics of the program and achieve the same level of certification as them. After completing the program, they were required to execute an online demo with their fellow teachers, superiors, and the school’s technical team. This aided the institution to discover whether the educators have sufficient connectivity to perform online teaching and also provided the faculty with guidance on how to resolve probable technical issues. Faculty members who wish to work from home were required to pass the demonstration and receive their certifications before proceeding to teach their future students.
Majority of the training was conducted via ZOOM, which is also used for synchronous classes between the learners and the teacher. This helped the educators gain prior knowledge about its interface before conducting online interactions with students. Face-to-face meetings were limited to members who were required hands-on training and physical observation to monitor their progress. Observance of safety protocols such as social distancing and wearing of protective gear (face masks and shields) were strictly enforced.
Despite the sudden shift in the learning environment, the school still aims to provide quality education to its learners. With the training programs and preparation of the ESS faculty and staff, they continuously ensure to educate with excellence in the new normal.
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