Habsmonmouth Online

Pastoral care

Protocols for videoconferencing

Protocol for instrumental teaching/counselling/academic tuition sessions via videoconferencing

  • The School will write to parents of pupils in advance of Summer term videoconferencing sessions, to introduce the service and to allow parents to opt out, if they wish.
  • Videoconferencing sessions may be used only for a limited number of purposes: for music tuition, for academic tuition or for counselling with one of the school counsellors only. Staff should not use videoconferencing to contact pupils for any other purposes. It is not an expectation of classroom teachers that they use videoconferencing to deliver teaching sessions on any of our academic subjects, although we are aware that some may wish to do so.
  • Staff conducting a videoconferencing session should use Skype for Business or Microsoft Teams, with their school email account as their Skype ID, and not a personal Skype, or other platform, account. ICT staff can help colleagues set up their Teams/Skype for Business accounts.
  • The staff member conducting the session should record it and make the recording available to the participants via Teams. Pupils should not record the session and neither staff nor pupils should make private recordings of the session. The exception are counselling sessions, which will not be recorded.
  • The member of staff calls the pupil, after adding them as a contact, and ends the call after the session.
  • Dress – pupils and staff should dress appropriately, i.e. fully clothed, nothing revealing, no extremes of fashion, no T shirts with controversial slogans etc. The standard of dress for colleagues is smart casual.
  • The pupil is in a “public” room, e.g. a kitchen or living room, where an adult can come and go freely. A bedroom is only used in exceptional circumstances, e.g. quarantining or if this is the only room in which an instrument can be played, and, if so, the door is left open. The only exception to this are sessions with a School Counsellor.
  • A neutral background which nothing too personal to the staff member, no controversial pictures etc.
  • Timing – during 8.30am – 5.30pm only, unless an exception has been agreed with SMT, e.g. because of a different time zone
  • Staff should keep a log of all videoconferencing sessions and report any safeguarding concerns that arise during them to the relevant DSP

For one to one sessions only (except with School Counsellors):

  • Email contact (using school email address) is made with the pupil and copying a parent/guardian in, before the videoconferencing session, agreeing the time and date of the session.
  • Chaperone – there should be an adult present in the house of the pupil, who introduces him/herself at the start of the session on camera and gives permission for the session to proceed. The adult may then stay in the room to supervise, or may be in a different room, but still in the building. Counselling sessions will normally proceed without a chaperone.
  • In exceptional cases only, where it is not possible for a chaperone to be present (e.g. where a single parent or both parents are key workers and the pupil is old enough to be left home alone), the parent gives email consent for the session to proceed without a chaperone in advance of the session.